In Alberta, Canada the spin-off company Nanostics Inc. is going to use research done at the University of Alberta to eventually sell a test that helps identify aggressive forms of prostate cancer. The researchers claim that this test is 40% more accurate at recognising men with aggressive forms of prostate cancer than the common blood test (PSA – prostate-specific antigen) .
The Extracellular Vesicle Fingerprint Predictive Score (EV-FPS) test is able to use nanotechnology to combine information from the nanoparticles of blood cells and recognise the unique fingerprint that aggressive prostate cancer has .
This new test will be less expensive and more efficient that the current ways of testing for prostate cancer, could potentially provide the additional benefit of significant savings to the health-care system . The test will be able to provide a diagnostic result using two drops of blood and will hopefully be able to avoid biopsies when unnecessary. Currently around 50% of the biopsies that are carried out can be classified within this unnecessary category, meaning that the implications of this new tool could prevent millions of biopsies and hospitalizations annually .