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Detect cancer in a drop of blood

To save more lives, early detection is an essential ingredient. Thanks to a new technology, it may be possible to detect breast cancer earlier and more easily, thanks to the work of Dr David Junker.

The earlier the disease is detected, the higher the chances of recovery. This is exactly what David Juncker and his team at McGill University are working on. With the financial support of the Canadian Cancer Society, a few years ago, these researchers developed a microchip capable of detecting substances associated with cancer in the blood.

Recently, Dr Juncker’s team used this new technology on lab mice to discover six substances in the blood that increase as a tumour grows in size. “These biomarkers associated with breast cancer were sometimes detected even before the tumour could be felt by touching the breast,” says the researcher.

This breakthrough will not replace mammograms or the knowledge that women should have of their breasts. It may, however, help detect cancer and assess the effectiveness of treatments. The McGill University laboratory is continuing its research to develop an even more efficient microchip. You can support research projects like this and hundreds of others that the Canadian Cancer Society is funding across the country.