B.C. researchers hope blood test could be ‘crystal ball’ for cancer treatment

B.C. researchers hope blood test could be ‘crystal ball’ for cancer treatment
BC Cancer is launching a new study to determine the effectiveness of blood testing in determining key information about a person s cancer.

Getty Images


B.C. researchers are hoping a simple blood test could be a “crystal ball” that allows doctors of the future to custom tailor cancer treatment for patients.

Researchers with BC Cancer’s breast cancer team are embarking on a two-year study to look at tiny fragments of DNA from an individual’s cancer known as circulating tumour DNA, or ctDNA.

Scientists believe understanding ctDNA could allow doctors to choose the right drugs and stay one step ahead of the cancer.

The study will be led by Dr. Stephen Chia, a medical oncologist and chair of BC Cancer’s breast cancer tumour group.

“ctDNA represents the next frontier in understanding who and how to treat breast cancers,” he said in a media release.

“We believe this will have critical implications for other cancers, such as lung, colon, ovary, pancreatic and bladder.”

As a part of the study, BC Cancer will begin collecting and analyzing ctDNA from consenting patients across the province.

Recovering breast cancer patient Sanja Simic said she hopes the research could help patients like her deal with the uncertainty of remission in the future.

“You really don’t know if it’s going to come back,” she said.

“And this kind of treatment really has the potential of adjusting the course of treatment and improving and adapting medications and treatments as you go.”

The new study will be conducted with the support of a $1.2 million donation from the Conconi Family Foundation.
News Topics :
The study heralds the future of personalised cancer medicine. At the moment drugs like chemotherapy cause damage throughout the body. One of the researchers is Dr Fiona Behan, whose mother...
Scientists have developed a three in one blood test that could transform treatment of advanced prostate cancer through use of precision drugs designed to target mutations in the BRCA genes. By testing...
A new blood test developed in the U.S. can diagnose early stage cancers by examining the sequencing of plasma DNA. SinobadZ/Istock Relaxnews Published Friday, August 18, 2017 7 02AM EDT An...
Scientists have identified key changes in immune cells within cancerous tumours that could help improve the development of treatments. advertisement The study also found a set of genes that are...
Detecting cancer before you ever get ill is a scientific breakthrough researchers around the world have been working towards for decades, but a new experimental study by the BC Cancer Agency...