How a routine blood test may help screen for cancer
Screening is one of the best ways to detect cancer early, when it can most effectively be treated. Unfortunately, many people today are not being screened in line with clinical recommendations. In colorectal cancer, for example, the second leading cause of cancer death in the US, one in three adults are not getting the recommended screening23 despite current guidelines recommending that all adults 45 years of age and older get screened.
Blood tests are now in development to detect the smallest amounts of abnormal signals in the blood, which can signal that a person may have the very earliest signs of cancer. By being able to see the earliest presence of cancer from a routine blood draw, a person can find out whether they have cancer or not, with additional diagnostic testing.
Here are just a few helpful educational resources for patients and their families:
Patient advocacy organizations
If you have been diagnosed with cancer, there are organizations that can help you and your loved ones connect with the cancer community and find the support needed. Below are just a few groups that may be able to assist you.
Colorectal cancer organizations:
Lung cancer organizations:
Gastrointestinal cancer organizations:
We also support the following patient advocacy initiatives:
- Shaw AT, Riely GJ, Bang Y-J, et al. Crizotinib in ROS1-rearranged advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC): updated results, including overall survival, from PROFILE 1001. Annals of Oncology. 2019;30(7):1121-1126.
- Ramalingam SS, Gray JE, Ohe Y, et al. Osimertinib vs comparator EGFR-TKI as first-line treatment for EGFRm advanced NSCLC (FLAURA): Final overall survival analysis. Annals of Oncology 2019;30(5):v851-v934.
- Garon EB, Hellmann MD, Costa EC, et al. Five-year long-term overall survival for patients with advanced NSCLC treated with pembrolizumab: Results from KEYNOTE-001. J Clin Oncol. 2019;37(28):2518-2527.
- Camidge DR, Dziadziuszko R, Peters S, et al. Updated Efficacy and Safety Data and Impact of the EML4-ALK Fusion Variant on the Efficacy of Alectinib in Untreated ALKPositive Advanced Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer in the Global Phase III ALEX Study. J Thorac Oncol. 2019;14(7):1233-1243.
- https://www.hcp.novartis.com/products/tafinlar-mekinist/metastatic-nsclc/efficacy/ Accessed online Jan. 10, 2020.
- Gadgeel SM, Garassino MC, Esteban E, et al. KEYNOTE-189: Updated OS and progression after the next line of therapy (PFS2) with pembrolizumab (pembro) plus chemo with pemetrexed and platinum vs placebo plus chemo for metastatic nonsquamous NSCLC. J Clin Oncol. 2019;37(suppl; abstr 9013). DOI: 10.1200/JCO.19.03136.
- Sandler A, Gray R, Perry MC, et al. Paclitaxel-carboplatin alone or with bevacizumab for non-small-cell lung cancer. N Engl J Med. 2006;14;355(24):2542-2550. DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa061884.
- Raja R, Kuziora M, Philip Z. Brohawn PZ, et al. Early Reduction in ctDNA Predicts Survival in Patients with Lung and Bladder Cancer Treated with Durvalumab. Clin Cancer Res; 2018: 24(24): 6212-6222. DOI: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-18-0386.
- Aggarwal C,Thompson JC, Chien A, et al. Dynamic monitoring of circulating tumor DNA next-generation gene sequencing as a predictive biomarker of response and progression-free survival after pembrolizumab monotherapy in patients with advanced NSCLC.J Clin Oncol; 2019: 37:15 suppl, 3040-3040. DOI:10.1200/JCO.2019.37.15.
- Kim ST, Cristescu R, Bass AJ, et al. Comprehensive molecular characterization of clinical responses to PD-1 inhibition in metastatic gastric cancer. Nat Med; 2018: 24(9):1449-1458. DOI: 10.1038/s41591-018-0101-z.
- Shaw AT, Martini JF, Besse B, et al. Early circulating tumor (ct)DNA dynamics and efficacy of lorlatinib in patients (pts) with advanced ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). J Clin Oncol; 2019: 37:15_suppl, 9019-9019. DOI: 10.1200/JCO.2019.37.15.
- Pascual J, Cutts RJ, Kingston B, et al. Assessment of early ctDNA dynamics to predict efficacy of targeted therapies in metastatic breast cancer: Results from plasmaMATCH trial [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the 2020 San Antonio Breast Cancer Virtual Symposium; 2020 Dec 8-11; San Antonio, TX. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2021;81(4 Suppl):Abstract nr PS5-02.DOI: 10.1158/1538-7445.SABCS20-PS5-02.
- Mack PC, Redman MW, Moon J, et al. Residual circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) after two months of therapy to predict progression-free and overall survival in patients treated on S1403 with afatinib +/- cetuximab.J Clin Oncol; 2020: 38:15_suppl, 9532-9532. DOI: 10.1200/JCO.2020.38.15.
- Maron SB, Chatila WK, Millang BM, et al, Pembrolizumab with trastuzumab and chemotherapy (PTC) in HER2-positive metastatic esophagogastric cancer (mEG): Plasma and tumor-based biomarker analysis. J Clin Oncol; 2020: 38:15_suppl, 4559-4559. DOI: 10.1200/JCO.2020.38.15.
- Modi S, Park H, Murthy RK, et al. Antitumor Activity and Safety of Trastuzumab Deruxtecan in Patients With HER2-Low-Expressing Advanced Breast Cancer: Results From a Phase Ib Study. J Clin Oncol; 2020: 38(17):1887-1896. DOI: 10.1200/JCO.19.02318.
- Zhang Q, Luo J, Wu S, et al. Prognostic and Predictive Impact of Circulating Tumor DNA in Patients with Advanced Cancers Treated with Immune Checkpoint Blockade. Cancer Discov; 2020: 10:12, 1842-1853. DOI: 10.1158/2159-8290.CD-20-0047.
- Thompson JC, Carpenter EL, Silva BA, et al. Serial Monitoring of Circulating Tumor DNA by Next-Generation Gene Sequencing as a Biomarker of Response and Survival in Patients With Advanced NSCLC Receiving Pembrolizumab-Based Therapy. JCO Precis; 2021: 5, 510-524. DOI: 10.1200/PO.20.0032.
- Reinert T, Henriksen TV, Christensen E, et al. Analysis of Plasma Cell-Free DNA by Ultradeep Sequencing in Patients With Stages I to III Colorectal Cancer. JAMA Oncology. 2019; 5 (8): 1125-1131. DOI: 10.1001/jamaoncol.2019.0528.
- Tie J, Wang Y, Tomasetti C, Li L, Springer S, et al. Circulating tumor DNA analysis detects minimal residual disease and predicts recurrence in patients with stage II colon cancer. Science Translational Medicine. 2016; 8 (346): 346ra92.
- Tie J, Cohen J, Wang Y, et al. Circulating Tumor DNA Analyses as Markers of Recurrence Risk and Benefit of Adjuvant Therapy for Stage III Colon Cancer. JAMA Oncology. 2019; 5(12): 1710-1717.
- Peng J, Li Y, Mo S, Ma X, Hu X, Zhang L, et al. Prognostic value of circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) detection during adjuvant chemotherapy in patients with stage III colorectal cancer: The interim report of a prospective, observational study. Journal of Clinical Oncology. 2020; 38, no.4_suppl.
- Tarazona N, Gimeno-Valiente F, Gambardella V, et al. Targeted next-generation sequencing of circulating-tumor DNA for tracking minimal residual disease in localized colon cancer. Annals of Oncology. 2019; 30 (11): 1804-1812.
- Colorectal Cancer Facts & Figures. American Cancer Society. 2020-2022. https://www.cancer.org/content/dam/cancer-org/research/cancer-facts-and-statistics/colorectal-cancer-facts-and-figures/colorectal-cancer-facts-and-figures-2017-2019.pdf. Accessed online June, 2021.