Arizona researchers reportedly develop cancer-detecting blood test

TUCSON, Ariz. (KVOA) – Every year, millions of people are diagnosed with cancer. A new blood test developed in southern Arizona could help better detect the disease and save lives.

When it comes to fighting cancer, early detection is key. And researchers at the University of Arizona say a simple blood test could be your best weapon.

UA College of Pharmacy Professor Dr. Bernard Futscher said, “We believe that simple, inexpensive blood tests are really the road to the future for cancer detection and monitoring.”

The test is called Desert-DX.  Researchers say a specific set of markers found on DNA shows cells’ identity.

Dr. Futscher said, “We know cancer is a loss of cell identity, so these markers change. We can detect those changes in two teaspoons full of blood sample.”

Desert-DX was commercialized with the help of Tech Launch Arizona.

The researchers are working on clinical trials so they can get the test into the hands of doctors.

UA College of Medicine Professor Dr. Mark Nelson said, “We hope to be able to offer this test to patients by 2020.”

Dr. Futscher added, “It will decrease the burden that cancer has on humanity.”

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