Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Test for Early Detection of Bladder Cancer Could Save Lives

Researchers are developing a test that can detect bladder cancer in its early stages. The test, if validated, could save lives. Bladder cancer, diagnosed early is treatable.

The new test uses current lab test techniques to check for the absence of microRNA. According to Liana Adam, M.D., PhD, assistant professor in urology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, “Measuring expressions of microRNA in bodily fluid represents a very promising tool with widespread implications for screening.

Bladder cancer is the fifth most common type of cancer. In men, it is the fourth leading cause of solid malignancy.

MicroRNA Dysregulation Accurately Predicts Bladder Cancer
For the study, researchers found common variations attributable to bladder cancer. They found 79 microRNA dyregulations in the blood of cancer patients that have previously been identified. The scientists say the test is, so far, shown to be highly accurate.

According to the National Cancer Institute, it's important to be screened for the disease for symptoms of blood in the urine, frequent urination, or feeling the need to urinate without success, painful urination and low back pain that could be mistaken for other conditions.

Adam said the test needs further validation, but “we could reasonably use this method for widespread screening of bladder cancer" that is curable in the early stages.

American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)