Dr Samrendra Kumar Singh, assistant professor, School of Biotechnology in the Institute of Science, Banaras Hindu University (BHU), has found a non-invasive method to diagnose cervical cancer in patients.
His findings have been published in the ‘Journal of Cancer Research and Therapeutics (JCRT)’.
The study finds a cost-effective and specific method for early detection, treatment monitoring, the status of residual disease and distant tumour metastasis in cervical cancer patients.
The study was undertaken in collaboration with the department of Radiotherapy and Radiation Medicine, Institute of Medical Sciences, BHU.
Singh said: “During the study, it was shown that circulating cell free DNA (ccf DNA) could be used as an effective marker to evaluate tumour burden in the patients, both in untreated and treated individuals. This study also shows that during concurrent chemo-radiotherapy, ccfDNA load disappeared and after six months of follow up, appeared back due to distant metastasis.”
He said that the sensitivity and specificity of this method and short half-life of ccfDNA makes this method reliable and potent as an affordable and real-time biomarker for detecting tumour burden in cervical carcinoma patients.
The study has also shown a way to follow up prognostic outcomes of medication/surgery by using blood samples from cancer patients.
He said this study could be very useful in developing diagnostics for detection of cervical cancers which is one of the top killers of women worldwide.
The study was conducted on biopsy confirmed patients.
Currently the only way to diagnose cervical cancer among patients is via tissue biopsy, which is not only painful but also not available and accessible to everyone.
According to him, the study was conducted at one of the laboratories of the Institute of Science, BHU, which carries out research in the field of cancer, especially cervical cancer. For this purpose, the lab uses various molecular biology, biochemistry and structural biology tools.