A team of Israeli researchers revealed a new discovery that could help diagnose one of the most aggressive types of prostate cancer. No invasive procedures are involved and the system has proven a solid accuracy.
They have discovered a protein that seems to have an important part in developing tumors at a speedy rate. Thousands of lives will be saved due to the cheap, accessible breath test.
Each year, more than 7,000 British people develop stomach cancer and, in most of these cases, the diagnose comes too late, when the cancer is already spreading in the advanced stages. There are many attributes of the new test that head of research, Professor Hossam Haick of the Russell Berrie Nanotechnology Institute in Haifa, had presented.
Haick and his team are excited about the test for more than one reason: it has a great advantage due to its non-invasiveness, it proved to be very easy to use, and it had a speedy rate of predictiveness. What researchers also found is that the test was little or not influenced at all by confounding factors and the fact that it could potentially be really low cost also offered an appeal.
There were also other medical projects and previous research which discovered various methods of diagnosing stomach cancer, but none of them studied the possibility of detecting pre-cancerous modifications in the body.
Almost 500 people participated in the study by giving breath samples – including 99 people who already knew they stomach cancer diagnose. After collecting the samples, researchers analyzed the “nanomaterial sensors”, which are chemical signs or patterns that warn about the changes associated to stomach cancer. These changes can be detected in very small particles found in the patient’s breath.
The test’s accuracy surprised in the fact that early and late stage gastric cancers showed different patterns, helping researchers make the difference. One of the applications of the breath test is to offer alternatives to the more expensive and invasive endoscopies, which involve a long flexible tube.
Besides the study that has been published online, the researchers added that a more extensive trial is underway, with thousands of patients taking part in Europe – including people who have stomach cancer or experience pre-cancerous changes. The purpose of the trial is to test the technology’s appropriateness as a diagnosing method.
Other tests that are currently available for testing cancer changes are unreliable, many of them prone to offering false positive results. Moreover, they can only identify the possibility of a tumor being present. That’s why further research in this field might lead to a very simple biopsy procedure that diagnoses after the first complains of symptoms.
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