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Cancer blood tests are now available, but are you ready for prime time?

August. Nov. 11, 2022 – A new blood test that can detect up to 50 types of cancer from a single blood sample is gaining popularity in the United States.

The Galleri blood test method network is being offered by several health agencies in the United States, in partnership with the company that developed it. They include the Department of Veterans Affairs, Mercy Health, Ochsner Health, Intermountain Healthcare, Community Health Network, Oregon Health and Science University Knight Cancer Institute, Premier and Cleveland Clinic.

Eric Klein, MD, of the Cleveland Clinic, is enthusiastic about the test, describing it in a blog post as a “game-changer” because it can detect at a very early stage Many different cancers.

Current screenings for cancer focus on one cancer at a time: for example, mammography for breast cancer and colonoscopy for colorectal cancer.

In contrast, the Galleri test involves only a blood sample, which is then analyzed for all the particles that cancers release into the blood, called cell-free or circulating tumor DNA. It detects if cancer is present and where it might be.

This test “revolutionized our approach to cancer screening investigation,” said Jeff Venstrom, MD, GRAIL’s chief medical officer, who markets the test.

Doctors worry it’s too soon for the test to be widely available.

Blood testing for multiple cancers is “a very good idea, and the scientific basis for the platform is sound,” Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health and Boston Dana-Farber Cancer Research said Dr. Timothy Rebbeck of the Institute.

Very early stage cancers are found and there are pathways for follow-up (diagnosis, monitoring, treatment, etc.),” ​​he said.

Galleri provided to Those over 50 and with a family history of cancer, or those at higher risk for cancer, or those with compromised immune systems. The company recommends that those interested in testing contact their healthcare provider, who then need to GRAIL Register and order a test.

EXCEPT In addition to a prescription from a health care provider, people who want the test must pay out of pocket, about $950. The test is not covered by health insurance and is not FDA-approved.

The company emphasizes, The Galleri test is designed to complement (not replace) recommended cancer screenings, such as mammograms.

This is a “screening” test for people who do not have cancer, so it is designed to In use by primary care physicians, Rebbeck said. He cautioned that a “clinical pathway” for primary care providers to process test results is not yet in place, although he said they are in development.

The test Returns one of two possible results – “positive, cancer signal detected” or “negative, no cancer signal detected”.

According to the company, the test can also Predicting the source of cancer signals with “high accuracy,” which helps guide next steps in diagnosis.

Patients may face multiple follow-up tests if they test positive, medical Sameek Roychowdhury, Ph.D., in partnership with The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center in Columbus.

“Not everyone gets real cancer, But they may go through a lot of inspections, including a lot of stress and cost, and still not find anything. I can tell you that every time someone is screened for cancer, that day is not easy,” he said.

The positivity rate is less than 1%. Only one person with cancer received a result that detected cancer in the absence of cancer. The accuracy of the test varies by type of cancer and how advanced they are.

Rebbeck said the test “is still relatively poor at detecting very early stage cancers, so additional adjustments are needed before the goal of multi-cancer early detection is truly achieved.

Venstrom acknowledged that the test was “not perfect” and said the company will continue to update and improve its performance. New data is expected in September, he said.

The UK is collecting data on the performance of the test in clinical practice, and the Galleri test is being used in a large trial in the UK National Health Service (NHS). Approximately 140,000 healthy, cancer-free volunteers have signed up Participate in the trial.



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