Colorectal Cancer Screening Test
The Stool-Based DNA Screening Approach
Every day, millions of normal cells are shed from the colon wall into the stool stream. As these cells degenerate, they release DNA. All colon cancers start as polyps, and as those polyps develop, they also shed cells into the stool stream. Some of these cells contain altered DNA, reflecting acquired mutations found in pre-cancerous adenomas and cancer. With the Exact Sciences stool DNA test, patients collect a stool sample at home and send it to a lab. The lab will process the sample through a series of sophisticated laboratory procedures to isolate specific DNA targets. The targeted DNA is then amplified and analyzed for molecular alterations associated with cancerous and pre-cancerous conditions of the colon and rectum. Doctors will discuss results with their patients. If a DNA abnormality is identified, they will likely refer their patient for a colonoscopy. While the science behind stool-based DNA screening is complex, the specimen collection process is very simple and patient-friendly. No bowel preparation. No dietary restrictions.