The Brain tumour could now be detected using urine test.
According to the study, one possible sign that a person has a brain tumour is the presence of tumour-related extracellular vesicles in their urine.
EVs are nano-sized vesicles involved in a variety of functions, including cell-to-cell communication.
Because those found in brain cancer patients have specific types of RNA and membrane proteins, they could be used to detect the presence of cancer and its progression, the study said.
Although they are excreted far from the brain, many EVs from cancer cells exist stably and are excreted in the urine without breaking down, the study said.
Urine testing has many advantages,” explained Associate Professor Takao Yasui of Nagoya University Graduate School of Engineering.
“Liquid biopsy can be performed using many body fluids, but blood tests are invasive. Urine tests are an effective, simple, and non-invasive method because the urine contains many informative biomolecules that can be traced back to identify the disease,” said Yasui.
A research group led by Nagoya University, in collaboration with the University of Tokyo, Japan, has developed a new analysis platform for brain tumour EVs using nanowires at the bottom of a well plate.
Although early detection of many types of cancer has contributed to the recent increases in cancer survival rates, the survival rate for brain tumours has remained almost unchanged for over 20 years. This is partly due to their late detection.
Physicians often discover brain tumours only after the onset of neurological symptoms, such as loss of movement or speech, by which time the tumour has reached a considerable size.
Detecting the tumour when it is still small, and starting treatment as soon as possible should help to save lives, the study said.
This research from Nagoya University, Japan, could also have potential implications for detecting other types of cancer, the study said. The research was published in the journal ACS Nano.
Scientists have used a new device to identify a key membrane protein in urine that indicates whether the patient has a brain tumour. According to their study, the protein used to detect brain cancer could avoid the need for invasive tests, and increase the likelihood of tumours being detected early enough for surgery.