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Breath test for cancer: Breathalyzer for lung cancer could be game-changer

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A breath test for cancer? That is what researchers at the University of Colorado think is possible and they are working diligently on its development. CBS News shared the details.

The test in development would be a breath test for cancer that could help doctors differentiate between lung cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). MSN shares that the breathalyzer can detect the cancer, which is typically difficult to find in its early stages, and assess whether it is in advanced or early stages. The findings on the breath test for cancer were presented this past weekend at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting.

Early research has indicated that the breath test for cancer accurately discovered lung cancer in four out of five cases. Given how difficult is currently is to find lung cancer in its early stages, this lung cancer breath test could revolutionize the detection and screening of the deadly disease. Lung cancer is currently the top killer in the United States of the various types of cancer. Long-term survival is greatly impacted by being able to find the disease early, but early detection is difficult.

How does the breath test for cancer work? Researchers have learned that the tumors related to lung cancer emit volatile organic compounds that provide a specific scent. The lung cancer breathalyzer homes in on that specific scent. A recent study at the Technion Institute in Israel had quite promising results in a recent study. The thinking is that the breath test for cancer could be a first step in determining who needs further intensive screening.

Alpha Szenszor, a Boston-based company, has acquired a license for the lung cancer breathalyzer technology. They are aiming to have it available within the next few years. Should this breath test for cancer become widely available at affordable prices, it could significantly change the landscape of battling lung cancer.



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