Circulating Nucleic Acids in Plasma and Serum IV

Edited by Edited by R. Swaminathan (King's College, University of London), Asif Butt (King's College, University of London, UK), and Peter Gahan (King's College, University of London, UK)
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Circulating Nucleic Acids in Plasma and Serum IV

Published: September 2006

Volume 1075

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An accurate, inexpensive, and noninvasive method for the early diagnosis of cancer has been something of a holy grail among cancer researchers, but until recently a method meeting all three criteria has been elusive. Nucleic acids were first discovered in circulation in 1948, but it was not until the 1960s and 70s that patients with autoimmune disease and cancer were discovered to have higher levels of circulating DNA than were detected in in healthy persons. The focus in this volume is on three major applications of the circulating nucleic acids detection method: cancer, fetal medicine, and diseases such as diabetes, stroke, and myocardial infarction. The benefits of using circulating nucleic acids in the diagnosis and management of cancer and chronic disease will be realized through earlier detection by means of this less expensive and less invasive testing technique and through its potential for closer monitoring of the disease.