Cancer blood-testing with a wearable device
For people who have been diagnosed with cancer, or who are suspected to have cancer, a common test doctors use to learn more is a so-called “liquid biopsy”. A sample of blood is taken and tested for cells from a cancerous lump that have broken off and made their way into the bloodstream - called circulating tumour cells, or CTCs. These CTCs can tell doctors a great deal about the cancer, which can help them direct better treatments.
The problem is, these tests can only sample a small amount of blood at any given time, and often fail to gather many CTCs, which leaves doctors wishing they had more information. But this week, a team from the University of Michigan have come up with a possible solution...Ben McAllister spoke to study author Dr. Daniel Hayes.