When researchers at the 2019 World Conference on Lung Cancer announced they’d seen positive results from a new early lung cancer detection tool, it raised the hopes of mesothelioma physicians around the world. The rare and fatal form of lung cancer caused by exposure to asbestos is notoriously difficult to treat, and one of the reasons is that it is always diagnosed when it is in an advanced stage. If the new test can be successfully used on those at risk for the asbestos-related disease, there is a significant chance of extending lives, and maybe even being able to achieve a cure.
Study included over 12,000 patients at risk for cancer
Though Oncimmune’s EarlyCDT® Lung test was not specifically created as a mesothelioma test, the information presented by chief investigator Professor Frank Sullivan was enough to provide scientists who treat the rare disease with reason to hope. Sullivan revealed that the results of a randomized controlled trial of 12,209 people in Scotland showed that its use facilitated a reduction the incidence of late-stage cancer when compared to those who were diagnosed using traditional methods.
The study found that among those who were at high risk of developing lung cancer, use of the blood test revealed the disease at a much earlier stage of the disease. It does so through its detection of immune system activity. According to the researchers, the technology detected cancer four years or more earlier than would have been possible using standard diagnosis protocols.
Technology detects early antibody activity
When mesothelioma or another cancer is growing in the body, the immune system immediately kicks into action to defend against the malignancy. Unfortunately, this activity takes place at a microscopic level. It is not until years later that symptoms begin to appear and act as catalysts for diagnostic inquiry. As a result, the disease is often undiagnosed until it has metastasized to other parts of the body.
The trial conducted in Scotland is thought to be the largest for the detection of lung cancer using biomarkers ever conducted. Notably, its results showed that 41.1% of those who would eventually develop lung cancer within two years were diagnosed at an early stage as a result of the test’s use.
If you have already been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma, there are many protocols available that may help improve your quality of life and survival time. For information, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net at 1-800-692-8608.