Detecting cancers through blood tests holds promise, but major hurdles remain – CBC

Canadian doctors say the test and similar tests need to be reviewed independently before widespread adoption

Sep 25, 2022

A simple blood test to detect more than 50 types of cancer is being hailed by the makers of the test as a new approach to cancer screening, but Canadian medical experts caution the technology needs more work.

Earlier this month, Grail — an American biotech company — reported their latest results from their study on their Galleri blood test, a multi-cancer early detection test (MCED).

The test is designed to find multiple types of cancer through a blood sample by looking for signals of cancer on DNA that cells shed into the bloodstream.

In the company’s recent clinical trial of their product, they found that out of about 6,600 people over the age of 50, the test flagged potential cancer in 92 people.

Of those 92 people, most of them – 62 per cent – did not have cancer after they were followed up with further testing including imaging, scans and biopsies. Some of the flagged people did have cancer, with 35 people diagnosed with 36 cancers.

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