Cancer scientists led by principal investigator Dr. Daniel De Carvalho at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre have combined “liquid biopsy,” epigenetic alterations and machine learning to develop a blood test to detect and classify cancer at its earliest stages.
The findings, published online today in Nature, describe not only a way to detect cancer, but hold promise of being able to find it earlier when it is more easily treated and long before symptoms ever appear, says Dr. De Carvalho, Senior Scientist at the cancer centre, University Health Network.
“We are very excited at this stage,” says Dr. De Carvalho. “A major problem in cancer is how to detect it early. It has been a ‘needle in the haystack’ problem of how to find that one-in-a-billion cancer-specific mutation in the blood, especially at earlier stages, where the amount of tumour DNA in the blood is minimal.”
By profiling epigenetic alterations instead of mutations, the team was able to identify thousands of modifications unique to each cancer type. Then, using a big data approach, they applied machine learning to create classifiers able to identify the presence of cancer-derived DNA within blood samples and to determine what cancer type. This basically turns the “one needle in the haystack” problem into a more solvable “thousands of needles in the haystack,” where the computer just needs to find a few needles to define which haystack has needles.
The scientists tracked the cancer origin and type by comparing 300 patient tumour samples from seven disease sites (lung, pancreatic, colorectal, breast, leukemia, bladder and kidney) and samples from healthy donors with the analysis of cell-free DNA circulating in the blood plasma. In every sample, the “floating” plasma DNA matched the tumour DNA. The team has since expanded the research and has now profiled and successfully matched more than 700 tumour and blood samples from more cancer types.
Beyond the lab, next steps to further validate this approach include analysing data from large population health research studies already under way in several countries, where blood samples were collected months to years before cancer diagnosis. Then the approach will need to be ultimately validated in prospective studies for cancer screening.
The Latest on: Cancer blood test
via Google News
The Latest on: Cancer blood test
- Localized Prostate Cancer: Treat With Surgery or Wait?on October 20, 2020 at 1:09 pm
Follow up requires periodic physical exams, PSA blood testing, repeated prostate biopsies and ... The art of handling active surveillance patients is to capture these tests before cancer spreads or ...
- Researchers find biomarker that can appear before stomach canceron October 20, 2020 at 12:39 pm
A promising new biomarker that appears in patients before stomach cancer develops may help with early detection of the disease and improve patient response to therapy, according to findings in a study ...
- Jeff Bridges Has Lymphoma—Here's What to Know About This Form of Cancer, and What His Treatment Might Involveon October 20, 2020 at 11:24 am
Actor Jeff Bridges has been diagnosed with lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system, the actor shared in a tweet on October 19. Bridges referred to his character in The Big Lebowski, writing, "As ...
- Nature Communications publishes Bluestar Genomics' technology for cancer detection studyon October 20, 2020 at 11:04 am
Bluestar Genomics, an innovative company leading the development of next-generation epigenomic approaches to early cancer detection, announced today the publication of study results in the ...
- UArizona Health Sciences researchers find biomarker that can appear before stomach canceron October 20, 2020 at 9:58 am
A microRNA that can be found in a blood sample may make it easier to detect gastric cancer and could lead to improved treatment for the disease and others like it that are resistant to common ...
- Validation of Bluestar Genomics’ Technology for Non-Invasive Detection of Pancreatic Cancer Published in Nature Communicationson October 20, 2020 at 8:11 am
Novel Epigenomic Approach Provides Proof of Concept for Early Cancer Detection Paving the Way for Next-Generation Screening Tests Bluestar Genomics, an innovative company leading the development of ...
- Todos Medical Receives Notices of Allowance From the European Patent Office Covering Use of TBIA Cancer Platform to Detect Benign Colon Canceron October 20, 2020 at 6:28 am
NEW YORK, NY, REHOVAT, ISRAEL, SINGAPORE, Oct. 20, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via NewMediaWire \-- (OTCQB: TOMDF), an in vitro diagnostics company focused on distributing comprehensive solutions for ...
- Point of View: Better early cancer detection for the Sunshine Stateon October 20, 2020 at 4:52 am
The COVID-19 crisis that swept through our nursing homes and continues to put every older American at risk shows that we have work to do – as a nation and a state – to serve this population better.
- Blood test could help identify best treatment for melanomaon October 15, 2020 at 10:00 pm
Cancer patients with high levels of cancer cells in their blood may benefit from receiving more aggressive drug treatment for melanoma, a study published Friday by Clinical Cancer Research found.
via Bing News