A University of Nottingham spin-out company has developed a blood test that can help to detect cancer up to five years earlier than current testing methods, such as mammography and CT scans.
Doctors will know the result of their patient's test within one week of sending in a blood sample.
Oncimmune has developed a new immuno-biomarker technology that replicates the cancer proteins that trigger the body's reaction to the disease, and uses robotic technology to measure this response.
This new technology enables much earlier detection and is likely to transform the diagnosis and treatment of most solid cancers such as lung, breast, ovarian, colon and prostate cancers.
Oncimmune has used this science, based on the work of cancer specialist John Robertson, to create a commercial test. The first early cancer detection test to launch will be the test for lung cancer, EarlyCDT-Lung.
Geoffrey Hamilton-Fairley, Executive Chairman of Oncimmune, said: "We believe this test, along with the others we will launch in the next few years, will lead to a better prognosis for a significant number of cancer sufferers."
Initial research results were derived using blood samples from patients with breast cancer and from a group of high-risk women attending for annual mammography in Nottingham. The results showed that the signal could be detected not only in patients with cancer, but in some high-risk patients who would not be diagnosed with cancer for up to four years.
EarlyCDT-Lung will be launched in the USA this month and in the UK early next year. Further research will allow validation of the test in other solid tumour areas.