Posts Tagged ‘biomarkers’

Can a Urine Test Improve Bladder Cancer Treatment?

Friday, March 6th, 2015

Can a Urine Test Improve Bladder Cancer Treatment

Bladder Cancer urine test: A new study published in the British Journal of Cancer concluded that being able to reliably identify patients with the most aggressive cancers early by use of a urine test, and promptly initiating therapeutic interventions might significantly improve outcomes. The validity of two urinary biomarkers could offer a new way of tailoring treatment. In this research two prognostic urinary biomarkers, epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) and a protein, epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM) were identified and validated in over 400 clinical samples. They found both were independent predictors of bladder cancer-specific survival and have prognostic value over and above that provided by standard clinical and pathological observations. Thus, measuring these biomarkers would offer a simple and useful approach to speed up prognosis and treatment of patients with the most aggressive form of bladder cancer.¬† Researchers said “These biomarkers alone cannot be used to diagnose bladder cancer, but there is immense value in being able to easily and independently indicate the prognosis of the disease in order to guide treatment and decide whether more or less aggressive management is required.”

More Sensitive Blood Test Identifies Recurring Breast Cancer Earlier.

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

Research presented at the 243rd National Meeting & Exposition of the American Chemical Society (ACS) on March 29 concluded that a new more sensitive blood test is twice as effective at detecting breast cancer a year earlier than current blood tests. The researchers said the recurrence of breast cancers for women within 10 years of treatment is about 1 in 5 and early detection of these can save lives. However, current tests are not very sensitive  and the best test known as the CA 27 29, misses many cases of recurring cancerr and detects them late.

The researcher said “We have identified a group of nine biomarkers that signal recurrence of breast cancer.”¬† “Our markers detect twice as many recurrences as the CA marker does at the same specificity. They also detect cancer recurrence earlier, about 11-12 months sooner than existing tests. They accomplish this with blood samples, rather than biopsies. with less discomfort to patients.”

To locate these markers the researchers analyzed many hundreds of “metabolites” in the blood of breast cancer survivors. The markers can be detected with a mass spectrometer in clinical labs and compared with CA values to generate a score that indicates whether or not the cancer has probably returned. If believed to have returned the patient would likely undergo imaging tests to locate the tumor. It is hoped that the new test will be available within a year.

Abnormal Cells in Blood Linked to Lung Cancer and Increase as the Disease Progresses

Wednesday, August 4th, 2010


A research report in the journal Clinical Cancer Research reported finding genetically abnormal cells in blood of non-small cell lung cancer patients that match abnormal cells found in tumor cells and these increase as the disease progresses. Lung cancer patients also had many more of these circulating in the blood than in the blood of closely matched controls. The researchers believe further research will show that these circulating abnormal cells are circulating non-small cell lung cancer cells. They said “Blood tests of these circulating tumor cells could be used to diagnose lung cancer earlier, monitor response to therapy and detect residual disease in patients after treatment.” To detect the abnormal cells the researchers used a technique called fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) and believe this is the first time this technique has been used this way.
Using 12 biomarker probes that target aberrations previously connected to lung cancer they analyzed 59 cases of non-small cell lung cancer and 24 controls including smokers and non-smokers. Findings showed 1) a highly significant difference in the average number of abnormal cells in the blood of cases and controls. 2) abnormal cells were significantly associated with the stage of the disease with cells increasing as the disease progressed. 3) Eight of the biomarkers had a strong overall correlation between the circulating abnormal cells and tumors. More information can be found in the above named journal.

New Method to Predict the Risk of Invasive Breast Cancer

Friday, May 7th, 2010


A new study reported online by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute concluded that women with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) that is the most common form of non-invasive breast cancer will have the opportunity to be more selective about their treatment in the future. This is a result of discovering a way to predict which women with DCIS are at risk of developing more invasive tumors later in life.
Following the medical histories of 1,162 women aged 40 and older who were diagnosed with DCIS and treated with lumpectomy, the researchers found two factors predictive of risk of developing invasive cancer within 8 years after a diagnosis of DSCI. These were the method by which the cancer was detected (lump or mammography) and the expression of several biomarkers (estrogen receptor, progesterone receptor, Ki67 antigen, p16, epidermal growth factor receptor-2, and cyclooxygenase-2). Results showed that a breast lump diagnosed as DSCI was more predictive of a higher risk of later invasive cancer than DSCI diagnosed by mammography. In addition, different combinations of biomarkers identified on the initial DSCI tissue were associated with different levels of risk of invasive cancer. Women who had high levels of p16, cyclooxygenase-2, and Ki67 were more likely to develop invasive cancer after their initial DCSI diagnoses and these markers will predict as far as 8 years in the future. One of the researchers said the findings show that the group of patients with the lowest risk has only a 2 percent chance of developing invasive cancer by 5 years and 4 percent chance at 8 years. He further said “This is an exciting and powerful beginning to be able to predict which pre-cancers will lie dormant and which will lead to invasive cancers. For the first time, we’ve identified that group of patients who have the lowest risk and the group at highest risk of developing invasive cancer. It’s a big step.”

Future Prospects for Diagnosing Lung Cancer With Blood Tests

Friday, January 29th, 2010


In an effort to let lung cancer patients avoid invasive diagnostic procedures such as biopsies or cancer producing high radiation procedures such as CT scanning and to develop a more accurate diagnostic procedure researchers are investigating blood tests. In a study presented at the AACR-IASLC Joint Conference on Molecular Origins of Lung Cancer Dr Steve Dubinett and colleagues at the Lung Cancer Center at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California in Los Angeles developed a 40-marker panel of potential lung cancer biomarkers based upon investigation of 90 patients with lung cancer and 56 controls believed to be at high risk because of smoking histories. These biomarkers correctly identified those with lung cancer 88% of the time and correctly identified those without lung cancer 79% of the time. Thus, the tests had a good sensitivity and specificity (ability of the test to correctly identify those who had the disease when they had it and to correctly identify those who did not have the disease when they did not have it). Although the researchers said the findings are preliminary and would not be available for several years, the fact that 21 of the 40 biomarker panel were significantly different between patients with stage 1 non-small cell lung cancer and the controls is promising.