Health News: Blood Test Detects Early Stages of Some Cancer

Researchers at Kansas State University have developed a simple blood test that can accurately detect the beginning stages of cancer.

In less than an hour, the test can detect breast cancer and non-small-cell lung cancer—the most common type—before symptoms like coughing and weight loss start. The researchers anticipate testing for the early stages of pancreatic cancer shortly.

“We see this as the first step into a new arena of investigation that could eventually lead to improved early detection of human cancers,” said Deryl Troyer, professor of anatomy and physiology. “Right now the people who could benefit the most are those classified as at-risk for cancer, such as heavy smokers and people who have a family history of cancer. The idea is these at-risk groups could go to their physician’s office quarterly or once a year, take an easy-to-do, noninvasive test, and be told, early on, whether cancer has possibly developed.”