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New trial into blood tests for early cancer detection

Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust is recruiting patients into Symplify, a national trial to see if blood tests can detect cancers early and improve early diagnosis, patient experience, prognosis and treatment. The Trust was chosen as a recruitment site following an expression of interest submitted by RM Partners.

SYMPLIFY is an observational study to assess a multi-cancer early detection (MCED) test in individuals referred with signs and symptoms of cancer. The test in question looks for 50 cancers, only three of which are routinely screened for by other means.

The Trust will recruit patients who have been referred to its ADOC (Acute Diagnostic Oncology Clinic) with non-site specific symptoms suspicious of cancer, or via the 2 week-wait suspected cancer pathway for lung, upper GI (gastrointestinal) and lower GI cancers.

Dr Abhijit Gill leads the ADOC service and is principal investigator for this study.

Dr Gill said: ‘Detecting cancer early gives better outcomes for patients. This trial is part of a bigger set of trials exploring the use of blood tests in cancer detection. Patients taking part in this study will have their diagnostic test(s) in the normal way, but they will also give a blood sample and permission to check their health records later to see if they were diagnosed with cancer and what appointments and other tests they had.

‘We hope to learn how these tests might be used to detect cancers earlier.’

The SYMPLIFY Study is a collaboration between the University of Oxford’s Department of Oncology, the Cancer Research Group at the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, the Oncology Clinical Trials Office, and the Primary Care Clinical Trials Unit. It part of the wider NHS-Galleri partnership, which is using the same technology in non-symptomatic patients. 

This project has support from National Institute for Health Research (NIHR).

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