New test may improve cervical cancer detection

November 23, 2012

Routine smear tests have considerably reduced the number of cases of cervical cancer, but despite intensive screening 250 women in Sweden still die from the disease every year. Researchers at Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have developed new methods of minimising the number of missed cases and making diagnosis more reliable.

Since the introduction of organised screening in Sweden in the 1960s, the number of women being diagnosed with and succumbing to cervical cancer has fallen dramatically. Screening, where a sample of cells is collected from the cervix and examined under an optical microscope, detects early cell changes so that they can be treated before they cause cancer.

However, despite intensive screening 250 women still die from cervical cancer each year in Sweden, and a further 500 develop the disease.

The sensitivity of the current test is low, which means that cell samples must be taken at least every three years. A large number of tests must also be repeated because of unreliable results - something which causes anxiety among patients and additional costs for the health service.

Researchers at Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg have now developed a complementary test capable of minimising the number of missed cancer cases.

"Around 70 per cent of all cervical cancer cases are caused by two specific virus types, known as HPV16 and HPV18. We have developed a method that identifies proteins of these oncogenic viruses in cells, enabling a more objective interpretation of the test results," explains Maria Lidqvist, a doctoral student, who presents the method in her thesis.

"This method can hopefully produce a more reliable diagnosis in uncertain cases and reduce the number of missed cancer cases, as well as the number of women who have to be re-called because of cell samples that are difficult to interpret."
-end-
The research behind this method has been financed by the Swedish Research Council and conducted at Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, in collaboration with Fujirebio Diagnostics AB in Gothenburg.

Contact:

Maria Lidqvist, doctoral student at the Institute of Biomedicine, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg
+46 (0)31-857032
+46 (0)70-6013883
Maria.lidqvist@fdab.com

Supervisors:

Jan Holmgren, +46 (0)31-7866205,

Christian Fermér, Fujirebio Diagnostics AB, +46 (0)31-857037

University of Gothenburg

Related Cancer Articles from Brightsurf:

New blood cancer treatment works by selectively interfering with cancer cell signalling
University of Alberta scientists have identified the mechanism of action behind a new type of precision cancer drug for blood cancers that is set for human trials, according to research published in Nature Communications.

UCI researchers uncover cancer cell vulnerabilities; may lead to better cancer therapies
A new University of California, Irvine-led study reveals a protein responsible for genetic changes resulting in a variety of cancers, may also be the key to more effective, targeted cancer therapy.

Breast cancer treatment costs highest among young women with metastic cancer
In a fight for their lives, young women, age 18-44, spend double the amount of older women to survive metastatic breast cancer, according to a large statewide study by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Cancer mortality continues steady decline, driven by progress against lung cancer
The cancer death rate declined by 29% from 1991 to 2017, including a 2.2% drop from 2016 to 2017, the largest single-year drop in cancer mortality ever reported.

Stress in cervical cancer patients associated with higher risk of cancer-specific mortality
Psychological stress was associated with a higher risk of cancer-specific mortality in women diagnosed with cervical cancer.

Cancer-sniffing dogs 97% accurate in identifying lung cancer, according to study in JAOA
The next step will be to further fractionate the samples based on chemical and physical properties, presenting them back to the dogs until the specific biomarkers for each cancer are identified.

Moffitt Cancer Center researchers identify one way T cell function may fail in cancer
Moffitt Cancer Center researchers have discovered a mechanism by which one type of immune cell, CD8+ T cells, can become dysfunctional, impeding its ability to seek and kill cancer cells.

More cancer survivors, fewer cancer specialists point to challenge in meeting care needs
An aging population, a growing number of cancer survivors, and a projected shortage of cancer care providers will result in a challenge in delivering the care for cancer survivors in the United States if systemic changes are not made.

New cancer vaccine platform a potential tool for efficacious targeted cancer therapy
Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered a solution in the form of a cancer vaccine platform for improving the efficacy of oncolytic viruses used in cancer treatment.

American Cancer Society outlines blueprint for cancer control in the 21st century
The American Cancer Society is outlining its vision for cancer control in the decades ahead in a series of articles that forms the basis of a national cancer control plan.

Read More: Cancer News and Cancer Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.