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DNA-based screen would aid treatment decisions for people with early-stage disease
By Mary Elizabeth Dallas
Thursday, July 7, 2016
THURSDAY, July 7, 2016 (HealthDay News) -- A blood test that detects bits of DNA shed from colon cancers may someday help doctors predict a relapse, researchers report.
This "liquid biopsy" predicted -- with imperfect accuracy -- the return of colon cancer in patients with early forms of the disease, the team said.
"Although this and other DNA-based blood tests are not perfect, this study shows that when we find tumor DNA circulating in the blood of cancer patients, recurrence is very likely," said study co-author Nickolas Papadopoulos. He is professor of oncology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore.
As the researchers explained, stage 2 colon tumors generally have not yet spread to other organs in the body. This makes it tough to determine which patients stand to benefit from chemotherapy after their surgery./;;;/