Scientists at the University of York have claimed they are close to developing a simple blood test for lung cancer.
Early signs of lung cancer could be diagnosed using the test according to the researchers at the university who have been working on the study.
The latest findings, published in the US journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, note that current available methods for screening at-risk people are either too costly or involve invasive procedures.
Dr Dawn Coverley, who is based at the university's Department of Biology and is funded by Yorkshire Cancer Research, found an altered form of a protein called Ciz1 is present in lung cancers, even at a very early stage.
She said: "We think that the test will be especially powerful when combined with X-ray or CT imaging and will offer doctors an alternative way to test whether an abnormal growth is cancerous."
Figures from Macmillan show lung cancer is the second most common cancer in the UK and more than 38,000 people are diagnosed with the disease each year.
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