Lung cancer is the third most common cancer in Wales and the leading cause of cancer death. Most patients are diagnosed at an advanced cancer stage, often leading to very poor one-year survival prospects.
The discovery of targeted genomic changes has significantly advanced and improved treatment options. However, current diagnostic pathways can take about 8 weeks or longer for genomic reports to be delivered. Patients with advanced lung cancer can deteriorate rapidly and die if treatment is not received in time. There is a critical need to improve and shorten the current diagnostic pathway and implementation of liquid biopsy into the lung cancer pathway could help to achieve this.
A liquid biopsy is a simple and non-invasive alternative to surgical tumour biopsies done through a blood test. It can be collected early in the diagnostic pathway and provide genomic analysis, which is needed for implementing targeted treatments. This project will expedite clinical implementation of an NHS-based diagnostic liquid biopsy test at suspicion of lung cancer to shorten the time to diagnosis and increase the number of patients that receive targeted therapy.
Find more information about this exciting multi-partner cross-sector project here.