Welcome to ISLB
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The International Society of Liquid Biopsy (ISLB), is an international professional organization committed to the advancement of the Liquid Biopsy and the promotion of a multidisciplinary approach for the diagnosis and treatment of patients based on then use of liquid biopsies.
Joining ISLB is to join an international community of professionals in this discipline who share best practices and the latest knowledge in the use of Liquid Biopsy for the definitive implementation of this technology in the treatment and care of cancer and other diseases that could benefit from the use of Liquid Biopsy.
Because of advances in DNA sequencing technology, doctors can pick up on these traces of DNA, and use them to track the mutations present in a cancer. Finding out this information helps doctors keep track of a patient's tumour and whether treatment is working, or find out early if a new scan or different treatment is needed.
Credit to: Cancer Research UK and Phospho Biomedical Animation
Liquid biopsies to monitor cancer
Being able to easily track cancer is vital in all stages of the disease. Doctors have long been able to monitor the disease with scans and by taking small tissue samples (biopsies), but now a new technique is becoming available to them: the liquid biopsy, which can deliver a lot of detailed information about a patient's tumour from a simple blood sample.
So how does it work? Inside a tumour, cells are growing at a high rate, but while many cancer cells are growing, some are also dying in a process called apoptosis. As dying cancer cells break up, they release fragments of their DNA. Some of that DNA can get into the blood stream, after which it's called circulating tumour DNA (or ctDNA). This circulating tumour DNA is ready for scientists to fish out with a simple blood sample.