ctDNA Test: New Breakthrough Tool to Screen and Monitor Cancer


In recent years, circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) painless liquid biopsy has been confirmed that it is capable of reflecting tumor heterogeneity and provides more information on cancer-related genes than conventional tissue biopsies can do. About 30 kinds of cancers and 197 genes can be detected with only 10 to 20 cc of blood. Sub-healthy people can use this test to screen cancer, and cancer patients can monitor cancer. The detection rate is over 90%, which is a great boon for our people!

In current medical check-up programs, cancer screening is broadly divided into two categories, one is tumor markers via blood test, and the other is medical images. However, tumor markers are less accurate; systemic medical images are limited by the resolution of the image and are less noticeable when the tumor is small.

Generally, when patients have a tumor in the breast, lung, or colon, they undergo imaging examinations. Tissue samples of the tumor are also taken via invasive methods, such as needle biopsy or surgery, to aid in greater diagnostic accuracy. However, these invasive methods are often limited by the number of samples that can be taken, the size of the samples, and organ tissue.

ctDNA test is an easier, non-Invasive, and repeatable sampling new method! Compared to the conventional cancer testing using imaging, biochemical, and tissue biopsy methods, ctDNA analysis offers a safer and more accurate approach for patient care without the risk of radiation exposure and infection due to surgery.

Most human DNA exists within cells and after a cell dies, its DNA is released into the bloodstream and becomes cell-free DNA (cfDNA). Similarly, the DNA of a tumor cell that has died is also released into the bloodstream, thereby becoming circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA).

Regular blood tests to detect ctDNA can help determine whether relevant genetic mutations have occurred in patients and provide a reference for targeted therapy. Unlike conventional imaging and biochemical examinations, ctDNA provides more current information on the tumor within a patient’s body, thereby enabling more effective monitoring and greater efficacy of therapy. Recurrence or new mutations can also be detected earlier so treatment strategies can be promptly adjusted. The technique of detecting ctDNA in blood samples is called liquid biopsy.

[ctDNA Test Procedure: ]

  1. Physician or nurse explains test procedure
  2. Sign consent form and provide blood sample
  3. Sample delivered to laboratory and starting data analysis
  4. The report is completed in 14 working days
  5. Physician explains test result

[ctDNA test applies to whom:]

  • Sub-healthy people
  • Patients with solid tumors (especially with lung cancer, breast cancer, colorectal cancer) who:
    • Assess treatment effectiveness
    • Evaluate suitable target drugs
    • Use ctDNA as a long-term treatment evaluation
    • Evaluate drug resistance
    • Unable to provide tissue samples regularly 

*This test can only serve as a reference for professional medical personnel. Please consult your doctor regarding the clinical meaning of the results or any other medical issues.

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