Groundbreaking new test can detect FOUR cancers on your regular smear

The new GROUNDBREAKING test can detect if you’re at risk for four cancers during routine smear testing.

Called “a woman’s cancer risk determination,” it can predict her chances of developing ovarian, breast, uterine and cervical cancer.

Up to four cancers can be detected in a single common smear test


Up to four cancers can be detected in a single common smear testCredit: Getty – Contributor

It would catch 30% more women at high risk for these killer diseases compared to current tests.

Using samples taken in one smear test also means minimal discomfort and appointment needed to keep tabs on multiple body parts.

Together, these four cancers account for more than 50% of all cancers in women in Europe.

More than 250,000 European women and those with female organs are diagnosed with these diseases each year, and almost 45,000 die from them.

The earlier a cancer is found, the better the chance of beating it – so if risk factors are known early, this can be extremely helpful in treatment.

Those found to be at high risk for any of these four cancers may then be offered regular check-ups or risk-reducing surgery – potentially preventing thousands of cancers. cancer patients each year.

The study, funded by The Eve Appeal and the European Research Council, published today in the journal Nature Communications, looks at specific markers on our DNA.

It’s called “DNA methylation,” and can tell what the future of cells will look like.

For example, throughout life, methylation can change with lifestyle and environment – ​​this affects how our bodies respond to disease, such as cancer.

The changes may be present in cells many years before cancer develops, but can be used to predict future risk from these markers.

The researchers used cervical screening samples as a surrogate tissue to measure DNA markers of cervical cells and found that they may be specifically related to whether someone has breasts or not. ovarian cancer.

Liz O’Riordan, a former breast cancer surgeon breast cancersaid: “This study is extremely interesting.

“Currently, there is no screening test for breast cancer in women under the age of 50. If this test could help detect women who are at high risk of developing breast, ovarian, cervical and uterine cancers, there is no screening test for breast cancer in women under the age of 50. provided at a younger age, it could be a game changer.”

The study found that the WID-Test outperformed a method currently used to determine breast cancer risk by combining information about genetic variants.

The current method identified 47.5% of women with breast cancer in the highest risk group, the WID-Test improved by almost 30% (29.1) on this and identified 76.6% of those with breast cancer. these women.


Similarly, for ovarian cancer, the current test identifies 35.1% of women in the highest risk group, while the WID-Test identifies 61.7%.

Professor Martin Widschwendter, Department of Women’s Cancer, UCL, UK, said: “Our studies have taken a completely new approach and assessed an individual’s risk of multiple cancers. multiplied by evaluating several different epigenetic footprints in a cervical screening sample.

“The WID test looks for footprints on a woman’s DNA as she goes through life, recording the path she’s taking and whether she’s headed for it. cancer.

“We look forward to a future where cancer screening is fueled by better molecular tests, giving women the choice to take preventative measures in the early stages and journey through cancer.” .”

Athena Lamnisos, Managing Director, The Eve Appeal, said: “The ambition of this research program is to stop cancer before it starts.

“This could represent a step change in screening for important cancers – not finding them early but stopping them from growing.

“Creating a new screening tool for the four most common cancers affecting women and those with female organs – especially those currently hardest to detect in its early stages – from a single test The only experience that can be a revolution.” Groundbreaking new test can detect FOUR cancers on your regular smear

Emma Bowman

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