A new, low-cost blood test may be an effective way to detect pancreatic cancer early, a research team says.
The nation’s No. 3 cancer killer, pancreatic cancer often goes undiagnosed until it is too far along to remove.
Current screening techniques typically catch it only “after it causes pronounced symptoms, when it has advanced far enough to be lethal,” said study author Kenneth Zaret, director of the University of Pennsylvania’s Institute for Regenerative Medicine.
Sometimes it’s found during a body scan for another health issue. But such scans are too costly for routine screening, even for people with a high risk of pancreatic cancer, he said. That includes parents, siblings or children of people who have had pancreatic cancer; those with some gene mutations; and people over 50 who suddenly develop diabetes.
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