A new portable and rapid prostate cancer test could give populations most at risk of prostate cancer, such as African-American men, a fast, convenient route to diagnosis. The inexpensive test, which mirrors the now-familiar two-strip lateral flow test device, can give results in around 15 minutes following the application of a drop of blood.
The cube-shaped 1.6 inch reader measures the prostate-specific antigen (PSA), a key marker of prostate cancer, and can quickly signal high PSA levels and the need to have further investigatory tests. The estimated price point of a couple of dollars for each test is pivotal, as it will allow for widespread distribution without a burdensome cost.
The tests portability means that they can be completed easily in a community setting, reaching people who perhaps otherwise would not be tested. For example, one study found that 43% of African-American men aged 41 and older had never had a PSA test despite suffering from disproportionately high mortality rates due to prostate cancer.