More research is to be done before such a test could be widely used, the researchers wrote however in the study. But new horizons opened for medicine even at this first step. “The success rate of therapeutics and surgeries is going to be much, much higher, we believe, if the cancer is found very early, before symptoms,” said Dr. Nickolas Papadopoulos, professor of oncology and pathology at Johns Hopkins Medicine and senior author of the study.
For the blood test approach used in the new study, the researchers combined assessing levels of circulating proteins in the blood and mutations in cell-free DNA. Levels of eight proteins and the presence of mutations in 2,001 genomic positions to detect signs of cancer are analyzed in the new test. At this stage results were different in comparison. CancerSEEK was able to detect 98% of ovarian cancers, but when it came to the much more common breast cancer, the accuracy was significantly lower, at 33%.