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Sun Nov 3, 2019, 05:40 AM

Breast cancer may be detected by blood test five years before clinical signs show


Breast cancer may be detected by blood test five years before clinical signs show

Robin McKie

Sun 3 Nov 2019 04.13 EST

Breast cancer could be detected five years before clinical signs appear in patients thanks to a blood test that could identify the body’s immune responses to tumour cells. That is the claim that has been made about research to be presented at a national cancer conference in Glasgow on Sunday. However, other cancer experts have warned these claims should be treated with caution.

The study is the work of researchers at Nottingham University’s School of Medicine who focused on chemicals known as antigens. These are produced by cancer cells and trigger an immune response inside humans. In particular, they cause our bodies to make auto-antibodies that target and try to block those invading antigens.

Researchers wanted to know if they could detect the presence of specific auto-antibodies in patients and show whether they had been triggered by antigens from tumour cells. So the team took blood samples from 90 patients newly diagnosed with breast cancer. They compared them with samples taken from a control group of 90 patients without breast cancer.

Finally, the group screened the blood samples to see if they could detect auto-antibodies triggered by tumour antigens. The researchers correctly identified breast cancer in 37% of blood samples taken from affected patients. Crucially, they were also able to show that there was no cancer in 79% of samples from the control group.

The results are considered to be highly encouraging by the group, which says they indicate that it will be possible to detect early breast cancer this way.

“The results of our study show that breast cancer does induce auto-antibodies against specific tumour-associated antigens,” said Daniyah Alfattani, one of the Nottingham team. “We were able to detect cancer with reasonable accuracy by identifying these auto-antibodies in the blood. Once we have improved the accuracy of the test, then it opens the possibility of using a simple blood test to improve early detection of the disease,” added Alfattani, who will present the study at Sunday’s National Cancer Research Institute annual conference.

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Reply Breast cancer may be detected by blood test five years before clinical signs show (Original post)
nitpicker Nov 3 OP
BlueMTexpat Nov 3 #1

Response to nitpicker (Original post)

Sun Nov 3, 2019, 06:06 AM

1. I wish this had been

available earlier!

Breast cancer survivor here!

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