Tissue biopsy is recommended for cancer patients to detect cancer and monitor the growth of tumors. Though the procedure helps in detecting cancer accurately, it is very painful and scary.
A new study presented at American Society of Clinical Oncology showed that a blood-based liquid biopsy can effectively detect cancer and may be a good alternative for conventional biopsy.
‘A blood test detects the presence of cancer mutation 94-100% of the time accurately and the results match to those of an invasive tumor biopsy.’
Researchers looked at the results of nearly 15,000 liquid biopsies conducted by Guardant Health among 398 patients. The liquid biopsy test used was Guardant360, which looked at more than 70 mutations.
A liquid biopsy can detect the presence of cancer mutation in the blood. They compared the results of liquid biopsy with tissue samples previously removed from the patients. They found that liquid biopsy was able to detect the mutation 94-100% of the time accurately.
However, it was not able to detect the tumor DNA, small pieces of DNA shed by cancerous tumors. They suggested that tissue biopsy will remain as the standard cancer detection test, but more research on liquid biopsy can make it as an effective alternative in the near future.