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Blood test may identify lung cancer in early stages
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A new study suggests that a simple blood test may be able to detect signs of lung cancer in its early stage, which would represent a promising strategy to improve survival rates.

The survival rate of people diagnosed with lung cancer is very low -- the two-year survival rate is only about 15 percent, due to the fact that the disease is often diagnosed in advanced stages.

If lung cancer is detected in its early stage, then by administering early treatment, patients have a greater chance of living a longer life than they would if their cancers were detected later.

According to the research, people with lung cancer have a specific genetic marker in their blood that has proven to be correct in more than 88 percent of diagnosed cases.

The blood-based lung cancer genetic fingerprint is suitable to identify the disease and predict its occurrence within two years.

"Early detection of lung cancer is a major need," said leading researcher Dr. Thomas Zander of the University Clinic Cologne, "and more studies are needed to validate the findings."

The researchers presented their study findings at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

(Agencies via Xinhua News Agency June 2, 2008)

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