Research Article

Feasibility of blood testing combined with PET-CT to screen for cancer and guide intervention

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Science  03 Jul 2020:
Vol. 369, Issue 6499, eabb9601
DOI: 10.1126/science.abb9601

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A real-time trial of a cancer blood test

Cancers diagnosed early are often more responsive to treatment. Blood tests that detect molecular markers of cancer have successfully identified individuals already known to have the disease. Lennon et al. conducted an exploratory study that more closely reflects the way in which such blood tests would be used in the future. They evaluated the feasibility and safety of incorporating a multicancer blood test into the routine clinical care of 10,000 women with no history of cancer. Over a 12-month period, the blood test detected 26 cancers of different types. A combination of the blood test and positron emission tomography–computed tomography (PET-CT) imaging led to surgical removal of nine of these cancers. Use of the blood test did not result in a large number of futile follow-up procedures.

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