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  • Queensland scientists developed a test they hope could be "the holy grail" for diagnosing cancer

    Author: AAP

Queensland researchers have developed a quick and cheap test that can detect cancer in any tissue, including blood.

The test has been developed by University of Queensland researchers who have discovered a unique DNA nanostructure that appears to be common to all cancers.

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Researcher Professor Matt Trau says this has enabled an entirely new non-invasive approach to detect cancer in any tissue type including blood, and led to the creation of inexpensive and portable detection devices.

These could eventually be used as a diagnostic tool, possibly with a mobile phone, he said.

"We certainly don't know yet whether it's the holy grail for all cancer diagnostics, but it looks really interesting," Prof Trau said in a statement on Wednesday.

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"(And could become) an incredibly simple universal marker of cancer ... that doesn't require complicated lab-based equipment."

The new technology has proved to be up to 90 per cent accurate in tests involving 200 human cancer samples and normal DNA.

Researchers are now working to further develop the technology, and licence it with a commercial partner.

The study is published in the journal Nature Communications.

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