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LCNMR study

Laatste wijziging: 24 januari 2022

In search of biomarkers in plasma to detect lung cancer using NMR spectroscopy


Principal Investigator: Prof. Dr. Michiel Thomeer


Lung cancer is one of the world's most common cancers, and in addition, the most deadly cancer. The lack of early symptoms results in a diagnosis at an advanced stage of the disease. In order to improve the survival rate of lung cancer patients cost-efficient methods are needed that make it possible to detect lung cancer at an early stage.


Several studies have demonstrated the potential use of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy to detect cancer. NMR is a technique that allows complex mixtures of metabolites, such present in plasma or serum, to be identified and quantified within a few minutes. Our research group demonstrated that lung cancer patients  (n=79) can be distinguished from controls (n=78) based upon the NMR spectroscopic analysis of blood plasma and this with a sensitivity of 94% and specificity of 96% (unpublished results).


The results of this pilot study have yet to be validated in a new and larger patient cohort. Therefore, in this study, blood samples of 250 lung cancer patients and 250 controls will be collected. After validating the results of an independent study population, the metabolic changes, specific for the development of lung cancer, can be determined and become an important tool for early detection of lung cancer. Early detection of lung cancer contributes to increased life expectancy and reduced destructive consequences for the patient.



  • Louis E, Adriaensens P, Guedens W, Bigirumurame T, Baeten K, Vanhove K, Vandeurzen K, Darquennes K, Vansteenkiste J, Dooms C, Shkedy Z, Mesotten L, Thomeer M. Detection of Lung Cancer through Metabolic Changes Measured in Blood Plasma. J Thorac Oncol. 2016;11(4):516-23.