Navigation Links
Blood Test May Spot Pancreatic Cancer Early
Date:9/1/2009

Researchers hope to detect the disease while it is still treatable

TUESDAY, Sept. 1 (HealthDay News) -- Texas scientists say they have found small molecules in the blood that can spot pancreatic cancer, a finding that could have diagnostic implications in the future.

Levels of these molecules, called microRNAs, are elevated in patients suffering from pancreatic cancer, the fourth-leading cancer killer in the United States. The disease usually isn't diagnosed until it is in an advanced stage, when treatment is all but ineffective, the researchers say. Less than 5 percent of these patients survive five years past diagnosis.

"We have detected elevated levels of these microRNAs in the blood of pancreatic cancer patients," said lead researcher Subrata Sen, of the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center's department of molecular pathology.

"This is an extremely promising finding in terms of developing a blood-based assay for detecting pancreatic cancer," he said.

If such a test could be developed, the question remains: Who should be screened? Sen thinks people with a family history of pancreatic cancer and those with risk factors for the disease, such as smoking, are the first candidates for testing.

However, how early high levels of these biomarkers appear in the development of pancreatic cancer is still unknown, Sen said. "That's the million-dollar question," he said. "That is something that has to be investigated with a bigger patient population."

MicroRNAs are short strands of RNA that regulate what proteins genes make, and they play an important role in both normal cells and cancerous cells. Changes in microRNAs have been seen in different cancers. Because microRNAs can be detected in blood, that may be useful in diagnosing cancer, Sen said.

The report was published in the Sept. 1 online edition of Cancer Prevention Research.

For the study, Sen's team looked at four microRNAs that have been linked to pancreatic cancer: miR-21, miR-210, miR-155 and miR-196a. The researchers looked at levels of these microRNAs in 28 patients with pancreatic cancer and compared them with 19 healthy individuals.

The team found the four biomarkers accurately detect pancreatic cancer 64 percent of the time. In addition, these biomarkers were able to find patients who did not have pancreatic cancer 89 percent of the time.

Toumy Guettouche, manager of the Oncogenomics Core Facility at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, thinks this test shows promise, but is far from being ready for "prime time."

"This is an interesting diagnostic method with a lot of potential," Guettouche said.

However, the sensitivity and specificity of the test is too low, he said. "This would have no chance of getting diagnostic clearance [from the FDA]," he added. It looks for 98 percent accuracy, he noted.

In addition, Guettouche said these same microRNAs have been linked with other cancers. "The problem is to determine pancreatic cancer to begin with," he said.

"What tells you that these upregulated microRNAs are from pancreatic cancer? They could be from another cancer," he said.

More information

For more information on pancreatic cancer, visit the American Cancer Society.



SOURCES: Subrata Sen, Ph.D., department of molecular pathology, University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston; Toumy Guettouche, Ph.D., manager, Oncogenomics Core Facility, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine; Sept. 1, 2009, Cancer Prevention Research, online


'/>"/>
Copyright©2009 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Blood Thinner May Prevent Chemo-Related Clots
2. Reflux Drugs OK With Blood Thinners
3. This Guys Got Blood, and Heart -- At 320 and Counting, Al Fischer Sets Record for Blood Donations
4. Summit VetPharm Helps Veterinarians Protect Against Product Diversion, Counterfeiting and Shrinkage Using Vectra(R) Bloodhound(R) Technology
5. Omron Healthcare Reaches 100 Million Blood Pressure Monitor Units Sold
6. Steady Improvements Seen for Young Blood Cancer Patients
7. Memorial Blood Centers in Urgent Need of Type O Negative and Type B Negative Blood Donors
8. Blood Flow Mismatch Seen in Pancreatic Cancers
9. Mayo Clinic Proceedings: Common Blood Disorder May Not be Linked to as Many Serious Diseases, as Previously Thought
10. Cord Blood America $1.6 Million in Debt Retired in Third Quarter 2009
11. Blood Mercury Levels Rising Among U.S. Women
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Blood Test May Spot Pancreatic Cancer Early
(Date:7/27/2017)... ... July 27, 2017 , ... SSCI, a division of Albany ... challenges worldwide, representing a milestone achievement. , As an industry-leading provider ... scientists have served as expert and fact witnesses to assist our clients to ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... July 27, 2017 , ... Healthy eating isn’t always easy. Currently, more ... At the same time, many Americans overeat refined grains and sugar. This trend may help ... of adults in the U.S. are obese. , As a culture, we seem to have ...
(Date:7/27/2017)... ATLANTA, Ga. (PRWEB) , ... July 27, 2017 , ... ... Man native Sam Brand to the men’s pro squad as a stagiaire for the ... to make his professional debut on July 31st at the Tour of Utah. , ...
(Date:7/26/2017)... ... , ... An inventor from Salisbury, N.C., knows the difficulties involved with leech ... dignified way to keep leeches in place during therapy," she said. "That’s why I ... effective way to keep a leech in place on the skin during therapy. It ...
(Date:7/26/2017)... ... ... greater Bay Area roller derby leagues are partnering with Brown Paper Tickets and the American ... blood drives in California, beginning July 29. Make ‘Em Bleed roller derby blood drives have ... have helped to save up to 2700 lives. , “The Make ‘Em Bleed blood drives ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:7/14/2017)... International plc (NASDAQ: ENDP ) will announce its second-quarter ... senior management team will host a conference call and webcast before ... The dial-in number to access the call is U.S./ ... is 45397076. Please dial in 10 minutes prior to the scheduled ... of the call will be available from August 8, 2017 at ...
(Date:7/13/2017)... York City-based market research firm Kalorama Information notes seven trends ... new products to new costs, to the threat of generic ... Potential Pipeline Disruptors . Among them are ... Age-Driven Growth - True Impact Moment Arriving   ... growing population and, to a more extreme extent, the aging ...
(Date:7/11/2017)... has awarded grants totaling more than $2 million to 16 ... Hemophilia Awards Program (BHAP). Four U.S. clinicians and researchers from ... Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in ... announced last night during a reception at the International Society ... Germany . ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: