Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Saliva test could dramatically increase detection of oral cancer

Date:
April 17, 2012
Source:
Michigan State University
Summary:
Scientists are working to create a simple, cost-effective saliva test to detect oral cancer, a breakthrough that would drastically improve screening and result in fewer people dying of the world's sixth most common cancer.

A Michigan State University surgeon is teaming up with a Lansing-area dental benefits firm on a clinical trial to create a simple, cost-effective saliva test to detect oral cancer, a breakthrough that would drastically improve screening and result in fewer people dying of the world's sixth most common cancer.

Barry Wenig, a professor in the College of Human Medicine's Department of Surgery and lead investigator on the project, is working with Delta Dental of Michigan's Research and Data Institute to compile study data and recruit dentists. The study will enroll 100-120 patients with white lesions or growths in their mouths and tonsil areas to test as part of the clinical trial.

Wenig and his team will be looking for certain biomarkers previously identified by researchers at UCLA; the biomarkers have been shown in studies to confirm the presence of oral cancer. By creating a simple saliva test which could identify the biomarker's presence, physicians and dentists would know which patients need treatment and which ones could avoid needless and invasive biopsies.

"Most white lesions are benign, so a majority of people who develop them are getting biopsies that are not needed," Wenig said. "Conversely, a simple test would allow us to identify those patients with malignant lesions and get them into treatment quicker."

Oral cancer has a poor survival rate linked to late detection, Wenig said: Only 60 percent of patients live beyond five years after diagnosis. Among black males, the survival rate is less than 38 percent.

"The key challenge to reduce the mortality and morbidity of oral cancer is to develop strategies to identify and detect the disease when it is at a very early stage," he said.

In addition to Delta Dental's Research and Data Institute, which works with researchers from leading universities to monitor advances in science, Wenig is collaborating with PeriRx, a Pennsylvania company that will sponsor upcoming trials with the Food and Drug Administration.

"The results of this trial could be life changing for many people," said Jed Jacobson, chief science officer at Delta Dental and a licensed dentist. "It is a tremendous opportunity for the dental community to participate in what could be a groundbreaking research project."

Wenig and members of his team recently returned from southern California, where they met with UCLA colleagues, who are working to develop saliva diagnostic tests for other cancers as well.

"These tests are as noninvasive as it gets; patients simply need to spit into a cup," Wenig said. "The ease of the test will greatly expand our ability to effectively screen for the cancerous lesions.

"Right now, there are no early screenings available for most head and neck cancers."

The test also has the potential to accelerate health care savings, he added, since the number of biopsies can be dramatically reduced.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Michigan State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Michigan State University. "Saliva test could dramatically increase detection of oral cancer." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 17 April 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120417152734.htm>.
Michigan State University. (2012, April 17). Saliva test could dramatically increase detection of oral cancer. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120417152734.htm
Michigan State University. "Saliva test could dramatically increase detection of oral cancer." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/04/120417152734.htm (accessed September 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

Jury Delivers Verdict in Salmonella Trial

AP (Sep. 19, 2014) A federal jury has convicted three people in connection with an outbreak of salmonella poisoning five years ago that sickened hundreds of people and was linked to a number of deaths. (Sept. 19) Video provided by AP
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