Could a simple blood test detect cancer?
Clinicians agree that cancer screenings, such as mammograms, offer the best hope of finding cancer before it’s out of hand. Unfortunately, screening is often uncomfortable and can require invasive techniques. It also generally involves several days of anxious waiting before results are available.
Replacing these sorts of screenings with a simple blood draw, one which could provide instantaneous results, has been a tantalizing yet unrealized dream among researchers for decades. (It was also the failed promise underpinning the Theranos scandal, which rocked Silicon Valley in recent years.) USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences Dean’s Professor of Biological Sciences Peter Kuhn says such screening technology isn’t just a pipe dream, however.
He and his team are developing a new method they’ve dubbed “the Pink Test” to detect breast cancer by looking at a patient’s bloodstream rather than imaging tissue. It could revolutionize cancer screening and treatment monitoring for many types of cancer.