The fight to cure Cancer can never start soon enough, but the earliest current detection techniques allow for detection is once we see the first symptoms of the disease.
This was the case however, until April 2017, when we saw a significant breakthrough in Cancer detection as Researchers from the University of California revealed software that detects Cancer before any symptoms arise.
Utilising data from the Cancer Genome Atlas database, and implementing the technique of machine learning, the software is capable of identifying and locating cancerous cells through the analysis of blood samples.
CancerLocator works by analysing DNA that escapes into the bloodstream when cells die. By analysing this DNA, the software can identify where the cell originated from and by analysing individual methyl groups in the DNA, identify if there has been any cancerous activity that has affected the cell.
So far, trials have proven an 80% effectivity for the software in the detection of lung, liver and breast cancers. By doing so, it currently gives these 80% of patients a chance of a much earlier detection and thus, a much higher chance of survival.
Furthermore, CancerLocator even prevents the need of performing invasive biopsies, that cause even more delay in detection and a potential extra physical exertion that comes with having any kind of surgery.
As an R&D Consultant, I feel it makes our job a lot more interesting when we see R&D produce life altering solutions for the bettering of humanity. Here is to hoping that in the near future, we can see this software see the light for use in the real world and start saving lives as soon as possible, and also see a lot more R&D efforts produce more life-saving innovations.
Lavin, Consultant, Leyton Spain