The blood test looks for signs of inflammation, signalling if one is at a high risk of developing cancer or heart disease
Spotted: Researchers at New York-based Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre believe a blood test could predict cancer and heart disease. While early detection screening for symptoms already exists, this test has the potential to predict risk decades in advance.
The test measures how quickly red blood cells, known as erythrocytes, settle in a test tube. A faster than average rate is a sign of inflammation. Test subjects who registered faster rates were 36 per cent more likely to die before their peers.
The study looked at the blood tests of 250,000 males between the ages of 18-20. They were monitored until age 57. There were 4,835 deaths, including 1,105 due to cancer and 874 due to heart diseases, during the study.
The base of the study was a group of over 100,000 Swedish soldiers who were tested until 2010. Researchers warn the study’s results may not be applicable for women.