Malignant cells characteristically possess high levels of plasminogen activator, which induce local fibrinolysis.
The DR-70 immunoassay is a newly developed test, which quantifies fibrin degradation products in serum by a proprietary antibody.
Dr Braden and colleagues from Frankfurt, Germany undertook a study to evaluate the DR-70 immunoassay as a detection assay for the presence of gastrointestinal cancers.
The research group prospectively collected blood sera from 85 patients with histologically proven tumour and from 100 healthy blood donors.
The researchers used 10 microlitres of participants' sera for the DR-70 immunoassay.
Out of the 85 patients included in the study, 19 patients had a hepatocellular and 10 cholangiocellular carcinoma, 13 cancer of the pancreas, 30 colorectal cancer, 10 stomach cancer and 3 cancer of the esophagus.
|DR-70 immunoassay showed good clinical performance with a sensitivity of 91% and a specificity of 93%|
|Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics|
Receiver-operator curve analysis revealed <0.7 g/mL as the best cut-off value to distinguish between patients with cancer and healthy controls.
The researchers found that using this cut-off value, the DR-70 immunoassay showed a good clinical performance with a sensitivity of 91% and a specificity of 93%.
In addition, the research group noted that patients with advanced tumour spread showed significantly higher DR-70 values than those with early-stage tumours.
Dr Braden concluded, "The DR-70 immunoassay reliably differs between cancer patients and healthy controls."
"Therefore, it promises to become a useful test for the detection of cancer in clinical practice."