A doctor inspecting a woman’s skin for melanomas.
A doctor inspecting a woman’s skin for melanomas.

Aussie scientists make breakthrough in detecting cancer

AUSTRALIAN researchers have developed a "world-first" blood test to detect melanoma.

Lead researcher Pauline Zaenker, of Edith Cowan University's Melanoma Research Group, described the test as an "exciting" potential screening tool because it could pick up melanoma in the very early stages when it was still treatable.

"Patients who have their melanoma detected in its early stage have a five-year survival rate between 90 and 99 per cent, whereas if it is not caught early and it spreads around the body, the five-year survival rate drops to less than 50 per cent," she said.

Queensland has the highest rates of melanoma in the world with more than 3600 cases diagnosed and about 300 people dying from the skin cancer annually.

The West Australian researchers compared blood samples from 105 people with early stage melanoma and 104 health volunteers.

Read the full story at the Courier Mail


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