Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Simple Blood Test For Colon Cancer: New Early-warning Test Detects Polyps Before Cancer Sets In

Date:
November 21, 2008
Source:
American Friends of Tel Aviv University
Summary:
Researchers in Israel have developed a simple early-warning test that can detect colon cancer in the blood. Using biomarkers, it is the first test on the market that can detect cells of colon polyps the precursors to colon cancer in the blood, with a very high degree of sensitivity and accuracy.

People are often reluctant to undergo a routine but painful colonoscopy ― but the consequences can be fatal. According to the American Cancer Society, colon cancer is the third most common cancer found in American men and women and kills about 50,000 Americans every year.

“85% of those who develop colon cancer have no symptoms or family history,” says Prof. Nadir Arber, a professor of medicine and gastroenterology, at Tel Aviv University’s Sackler Faculty of Medicine. “Generally speaking, it’s much harder to get these people to comply with taking the test.”

To convince more people to undergo the potentially life-saving colonoscopy, Prof. Arber has developed a simple early-warning test that can detect colon cancer in the blood. Using biomarkers, it is the first test on the market that can detect cells of colon polyps the precursors to colon cancer in the blood, with a very high degree of sensitivity and accuracy.

This painless, non-invasive and inexpensive test could very well be a breakthrough of the decade.

An Attractive Diagnostic Step

“If we can identify those who are prone to cancer through a less invasive test, we can convince them to do the colonoscopy,” leading to earlier detection and treatment, says Prof. Arber, who heads the Integrated Cancer Prevention Center at the Tel Aviv Souraski Medical Center.

Now being prepared for the market by Bio Mark Ltd., a subsidiary of Micromedic Technologies Ltd., Prof. Arber’s “CD24” test could begin to save thousands of Americans’ lives by as early as 2010. With the test, doctors can catch polyp growth in the colon in 80% of patients.

The American Cancer Society suggests that all Americans over the age of 50 receive periodic colonoscopies. With Prof. Arber’s test, doctors will be able to screen patients for colon cancer quickly and easily as part of a routine blood test. While not 100% accurate, it will provide a convincing argument for patients to undergo the colonoscopy, and then polyp removal, if necessary.

The novel invention is based on testing CD24, the oncogene for colorectal cancer. It utilizes the fact that polyps in the colon emit biomarkers, which can be detected in the blood at very low levels. Recent studies show that the test can correctly identify adenomas, the polyps that convert to colon cancer, at a success rate of more than 80%.

Some patients forego colonoscopy not just out of fear or distaste, but due to its high cost. Here, too, the breakthrough is significant. While traditional colonoscopies cost about about $1,500 per test, Prof. Arber’s procedure is expected to cost much less ― $50 to $100 per test.

Prevention Is Still the Best Medicine

Prof. Arber recommends a number of preventative steps against colon cancer, especially by those at risk. “There are some lifestyle choices people can make to prevent malignancies,” he says. “Eating well, exercise, and avoiding smoking and drinking are very important.”

Prof. Arber is also working on a drug that prevents the growth of polyps in the colon.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Friends of Tel Aviv University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Friends of Tel Aviv University. "Simple Blood Test For Colon Cancer: New Early-warning Test Detects Polyps Before Cancer Sets In." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 November 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081120144240.htm>.
American Friends of Tel Aviv University. (2008, November 21). Simple Blood Test For Colon Cancer: New Early-warning Test Detects Polyps Before Cancer Sets In. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 17, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081120144240.htm
American Friends of Tel Aviv University. "Simple Blood Test For Colon Cancer: New Early-warning Test Detects Polyps Before Cancer Sets In." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/11/081120144240.htm (accessed April 17, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Could Even Casual Marijuana Use Alter Your Brain?

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A new study conducted by researchers at Northwestern and Harvard suggests even casual marijuana use can alter your brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Thousands Of Vials Of SARS Virus Go Missing

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) A research institute in Paris somehow misplaced more than 2,000 vials of the deadly SARS virus. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Formerly Conjoined Twins Released From Dallas Hospital

Formerly Conjoined Twins Released From Dallas Hospital

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) Conjoined twins Emmett and Owen Ezell were separated by doctors in August. Now, nearly nine months later, they're being released from the hospital. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins