Liquid Biopsy for Cancer Detection
A liquid biopsy is an important spoke in the wheel of precision oncology: this non-invasive genetic test provides extremely fast results on the mutations driving your specific form of cancer – and often enables us to start you on the correct targeted treatment within just 10 days.
What is Liquid Biopsy (ctDNA, cfDNA)?
- It’s a fast, simple, non-invasive blood test that looks for tumour DNA in your blood sample.
- It instantly provides data on all tumours in your body, as well as detailed information on the percentage of each mutation (tumour DNA) found in your blood.
Liquid biopsy can determine:
- Which mutation is driving your cancer
- Which mutation needs to be the primary target for your cancer therapy
- Which targeted cancer therapy will be best suited to your unique mutations
- How well your treatment is working on an ongoing basis
- Whether any adjustments need to be made in your treatment
How Do Liquid Biopsies Work?
Tumour cells release DNA into your bloodstream. This DNA has the same genetic mutations as the primary cancer tumour, as well as other sites of metastasis. This means we can test your tumour DNA with just a blood test, rather than a biopsy sample.
A Liquid Biopsy (ctDNA / cfDNA) test checks your blood for tumour DNA to tell us what mutations may be driving your cancer. The concentration of tumour DNA in your bloodstream tells us how advanced your cancer is and whether your treatment is beneficial.
- Benefits of Liquid Biopsy for Cancer
- Inexpensive, non-invasive, and fast testing
- Easily obtains blood samples to look for tumour DNA
- Identifies the genetic variation in all your tumours, simultaneously
- Tracks individual mutations to see which drugs are working – and which aren’t
- Identifies new mutations that may drive the recurrence of tumours
- Monitors you during remission to catch any potential recurrence
- This means we can catch the recurrence of cancerous cells before any visible signs of tumour are present.
- So if your cancer does return, it will be much easier to treat since we’ll know about it immediately.
Liquid biopsies are also sometimes called ctDNA, cfDNA. These acronyms refer to the type of DNA findings the test produces.
- What is circulating tumour DNA?
- Circulating tumour DNA Analysis (ctDNA)
- Refers to circulating tumour DNA found in the blood
- Is specific to the DNA from tumours
- What is Cell free DNA?
- Cell free DNA Analysis (cfDNA)
- Refers to any DNA found in the blood, including tumour DNA
- (Blood contains DNA from other cells, such as leukocytes)
Liquid biopsy (ctDNA, cfDNA) is an essential tool for two major aspects of precision oncology:
- Targeted cancer therapy
Liquid biopsy quickly identifies any common targetable mutations driving your cancer.
- Within just 7 days or less, you’ll have the results back
- That means you could be starting the correct targeted therapy shortly after just 7 days of contracting CTOAM
- Cancer treatment monitoring
Liquid biopsy offers an easy, fast way to monitor how well your treatment is working.
- This simple blood test enables us to make quick adjustments to your treatment, as needed, on an ongoing basis
- That means you won’t need to engage in regular CT scans or MRIs for treatment monitoring
This simple blood test for cancer is a powerful tool for cancer diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring;the speed with which it provides results can help you get the treatment you need as fast as possible. If you or a loved one have received a cancer diagnosis and want to learn more about this invaluable blood test, please connect with our care team.