Innovative New Non-Invasive Diagnostic and Prognostic Assay for Early Stage Lung Cancer Available for Licensing or Collaboration

In the United States, one in four cancer deaths occur from lung cancer, however, there is a lack of lung cancer screenings and analysis available quickly and at a low cost. Scientists from the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Laboratory of Human Carcinogenesis have proven a unique, non-invasive screening tool and diagnostic that detects lung cancer at an early stage by utilizing liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry of urine samples.

The current standard of testing is low-dose computer tomography (LD-CT). This method suffers from low sensitivity and specificity and can miss occult cancer (10% false negative rate), or incorrectly diagnose cancer when it is not there, with up to 90% false positive results. NCI’s non-invasive diagnostic and prognostic assay for early-stage lung cancer minimizes patient discomfort, can be done during a routine exam, and could supplement existing LD-CT that cannot detect early-stage nodules.

The potential commercial applications of this technology include a diagnostic test for early-stage lung cancer to supplement or supplant current LD-CT-based methods and as a prognostic test for patient survival. The competitive advantages of this opportunity are that it greatly improves early-stage cancer screening with significantly lower false positive/false negative results than LD-CT. Additionally, sample collection is very easy and the cost of analysis is low.

The NCI seeks research collaborations to discover additional aspects of this methodology in patient samples, or licensing to commercialize the technology through CLIA or LDT. For more information, check out the abstract.