Circulating Tumour Cells (CTCs) are extremely rare cells that have detached from solid tumours, travel in the bloodstream and can cause the cancer to spread. They are considered the seeds of metastasis and could be a clear indication of disease progression.
A blood test, or liquid biopsy that can detect and profile these CTCs presents a quick, non-invasive way to obtain real-time information about the cancer disease status. In combination with other diagnostic methods, doctors may be able to design specific responses to fight the diagnosed cancer.
Combining this insight with the ability to match drugs according to disease mutation and resistance, isolating wholly intact CTCs could be the potential gold standard for the detection of cancer metastasis.
All from a simple blood draw.