Early detection is imperative for the recovery of cancer. Studies over the past few decades have shown this to be true; detecting any form of cancer early dramatically raises one’s chance of survival. Some forms of cancer, particularly cancers effecting the lungs, such as mesothelioma, are difficult to detect in its early stages, making for more unsuccessful treatments and higher mortality rates. Recently, researchers at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM) have possibly discovered a way to detect these fatal diseases in their early stages by using dogs and their highly acute senses.
In LECOM’s research, while collaborating with BioScentDX, a nearby canine training facility, they discovered that beagles can differentiate blood serum samples containing lung cancer to noncancerous blood samples. Over the span of eight weeks, three beagles were trained by researchers to pick out the lone cancerous blood sample out of five and were rewarded when successful. The beagles would sit in front of the identified cancer sample 96.7 percent of the time, while ignoring the non contaminated blood samples 97.5 percent of the time, both near-perfect rates.
A second follow-up study had been administered by LECOM in a similar fashion using beagles, this time, observing their ability to detect lung, breast, or colorectal cancer from a patient’s facemask and their breath. Early results of this second study have revealed that beagles may be just as successful in determining cancer in breath samples as they had been in blood samples.
Beagles are used specifically because of their renowned sense of smell; dogs have a sense of smell at least 10,000 times stronger than that of a human’s. Not only do beagles have a better sense of smell compared to other breeds, but their demeanor and ability to learn and understand commands makes them the perfect candidate for research. In fact, early studies have also shown that some dog breeds are able to detect breast cancer quicker than mammograms.
Lung cancer is the deadliest of all cancers for men and women throughout the world. Perhaps this is true because lung cancer is very difficult to discover in its early stages, when a victim has the best chance of survival and recovery. Methods used now to detect lung cancer in its early stage, such as X-rays and CT scans, are either unsuccessful or too expensive for the lower income patient. They can also cause more harm to the patient. Researchers are attempting to identify the biomarkers beagles use to detect these cancers in hopes of using them in an over the counter and inexpensive method.
If you or a loved one has been exposed to asbestos or has been diagnosed with an associated disease, then contact the Philadelphia mesothelioma attorneys at Brookman, Rosenberg, Brown & Sandler today. Our knowledgeable and experienced attorneys will fight to obtain the rightful compensation you deserve. Call us today at 215-569-4000 or fill out our online form for a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania, including Delaware County, Chester County, and Philadelphia County.