‘Groundbreaking’ high-sensitivity cancer-screening test arriving in SA ahead of World Cancer Day

The test requires only 10ml of blood and can be used by any asymptomatic individual of 40 years and older.

The test requires only 10ml of blood and can be used by any asymptomatic individual of 40 years and older.

Published Feb 2, 2022


The “world’s first” high-sensitivity cancer-screening test is set to arrive in South Africa on Thursday ahead of World Cancer Day on Friday.

The blood-based “Trucheck” cancer-screening test, developed by India-based Datar Cancer Genetics’ Laboratories, is described as an “easy-to-access” and affordable cancer-screening test to be used as part of annual health checks by all individuals of 40 years and older.

According to the company, the tests can detect the earliest traces of cancers, from prostate cancer to breast cancer from a simple blood sample by detecting circulating tumor cells (CTCs).

“We believe that detection of “circulating tumour cells” is a very dependable and accurate method for early detection of cancer,” says Dr Chirantan Bose, director at Datar Cancer Genetics.

“It enables capture and characterisation of functional components of a tumour, rather than surrogate evidence like biochemical markers, which are far less accurate for cancer screening.

“Also, being a blood test, the Trucheck sample can be collected from the convenience of homes and does not require the individual to visit a hospital,” Bose added.

Their studies have shown that even Stage 0(DCIS) and Stage 1 cancers are detected “with the highest accuracy” through the Trucheck test. The test requires only 10ml of blood, and can be used by any asymptomatic individuals of 40 and older.

This innovative test is to be launched in South Africa by Unique Diagnostics, a medical diagnostic-sourcing company based in Cape Town and Johannesburg.

“My world revolves around molecular pathology, so this is an exhilarating event indeed. We’re so excited about the development of Trucheck.

“We see huge potential in it, and believe that countless lives can be saved through such high-accuracy early detection,” says Gerard du Toit, director of Unique Diagnostics.

“We expect Trucheck to be a total game-changer in the fight against certain cancers,” adds co-director of Unique Diagnostics, Amit Navon.

“This is the first official non-invasive oncology precision test FDA BBD-approved, and we know it is the first of many,” Navon says.