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Russian scientists have discovered a way to painlessly diagnose the most common cancer in men

In its early stages, like many types of cancer, this disease is now successfully treated.

In its early stages, like many types of cancer, this disease is now successfully treated.

A picture: Shutterstock

– In Western countries, prostate cancer ranks best in terms of prevalence among oncological diseases in men. In Russia, it is second only to lung cancer, – said in one of the interviews with KP well-known urologist, academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Armais Kamalov. At the same time, malignant tumors of the prostate are among the three most common causes of male cancer death, experts say.

In its early stages, like many types of cancer, this disease is now successfully treated. Often it is possible to preserve the patient’s quality of life, say oncologists. For early diagnosis, a blood test for prostate-specific antigen (PSA) is used. In our country, it is included in the list of oncoscreening as part of a free medical examination and relies on men aged 45, 50, 55, 60 and 64 years.

However, an elevated PSA level by itself does not mean that a patient definitely has prostate cancer, experts explain. A biopsy is performed to determine the definitive diagnosis. This is the removal of tissue to check for the presence of tumor cells. Pretty painful procedure. Plus, there’s a risk of side effects, including inflammation and bleeding. Therefore, scientists have been working on alternative diagnostic methods for a long time.

Researchers from Sechenov University have developed a new way of detecting prostate cancer painlessly. It is based on the analysis of seminal fluid.

– Cells from the primary tumor can invade the prostate ducts and accumulate in the prostate fluid. In turn, seminal fluid, which is naturally rich in prostate fluid, can be an excellent material for the diagnosis of prostate cancer, – told Aleksey Rzhevsky, researcher, laboratory for directed drug transport of the Institute of Translational Medicine and Biotechnology, Sechenov University.

According to the scientist, the microfluidic technique was used for diagnostics. It is associated with highly accurate analysis of small amounts of liquids and “combines the knowledge of physics, hydraulics, dynamics, chemistry, biology and engineering.” For patients, the main thing is that the method turned out to be very sensitive and specific. That is, it works even with a minimal number of tumor cells and does not confuse them with other objects. In addition, the examination is fast: The sample processing time is less than 5 minutes and does not require advanced equipment — only a microfluidic and a dispenser are needed to deliver liquid to a special chip, explains Rzhevsky.

Scientists conducted a study that confirmed the effectiveness of the technique, and published results in an international scientific publication. This method could become a promising alternative to existing traditional methods of diagnosing prostate cancer, experts at Sechenov University believe. In addition, the approach may be suitable for the detection of some other male cancers, including testicular cancer.

By Peter Kavinsky

Peter Kavinsky is the Executive Editor at cablefreetv.org