Stool DNA testing could expand CRC screening access in underserved areas: 6 things to know

Mayo Clinic researchers conducted a study comparing the efficacy of multitarget stool DNA tests to fecal immunochemical testing for colorectal cancer screening in Alaska Native people.

Here are six things to know about the study.

1. Alaska Native people have high rates of colorectal cancer and limited access to screening.

2. The study examined 868 asymptomatic patients aged 40 to 85 years undergoing screening or surveillance colonoscopy.

3. Of these patients, 661 completed the study. The researchers found stool DNA testing was superior to FMT in the screening group; screening-relevant colorectal neoplasia detection was 50 percent and 31 percent, respectively.

4. Specificities for stool DNA testing were 93 percent and 96 percent for FIT.

5. The study authors concluded stool DNA testing had high sensitivity for cancer and larger polyps, though FIT had slightly higher specificity.

6. The authors suggest stool DNA testing has the potential to be used to expand CRC screening and reduce CRC incidence in underserved areas.

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