3 hospitals piloting blood tests to detect cancer

More hospitals and systems are testing the effectiveness of blood tests to detect cancer.

Recently, the Prostate Cancer Foundation also updated its guidelines and said that PSA blood tests should be considered the first-line method of detection, followed by further diagnostic tests, such as a biopsy, if PSA levels are found to be higher than normal.

Here are three hospitals piloting blood tests to detect cancers:

1. Seattle-based Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center researchers found a blood test could detect colorectal cancer with 83.1% accuracy. The blood tests had a similar accuracy rate as at-home stool tests but are not as sensitive as a colonoscopy, researchers said.

2. Minneapolis-based Allina Health Cancer Institute is launching a first-of-its-kind clinical trial using artificial intelligence and a simple blood draw to find and diagnose breast cancer. Using AI, researchers at the institute will create a 3D holographic image of the cells found in the blood draw, identify the cancer cells and separate them from healthy ones. The isolated cancer cells can then be characterized to study how they survive, spread and determine how to keep dormant cells from triggering new cancer.

3. Results from a pilot study led by New York City-based Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center suggest that a single blood test may be able to detect the presence of 50 different cancer types. Samples were taken from 6,600 patients who did not have any symptoms of cancer. In 92 of those individuals, the test detected early cancer signals. Of those patients, about 1 in 3 whose screening test was positive were ultimately confirmed to have cancer.

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