Artificial intelligence trained to detect the DNA of cancer cells in the blood

The genetic material of lung cancer cells can be found in the blood. Scientists at Stanford University (USA) have found that detecting DNA fragments of mutant cells in the blood can be considered as an early biomarker of lung cancer. 

Lung cancer is one of the most deadly cancers. Early detection increases the chances of survival, but the only way to do so in time is with CT scan. Due to the high cost of screening, people do not undergo MRI diagnostics for prevention, and there are virtually no symptoms at an early stage of the disease. Therefore, simple and inexpensive methods to detect lung cancer at an early stage are being sought. The detection of tumour DNA in blood samples meets these requirements. Experts believe that the function of scanning and analyzing blood for the presence of cancerous cell genome samples is best handled by artificial intelligence. The study showed that a specially trained program was able to detect lung cancer at the first stage in 63% of cases. This figure is lower than MRI, but high enough to be widely used - especially in people with high hereditary cancer risk.

April 2, 2020, 9:45 a.m.

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