A study revealed that dogs can accurately sense cancer in blood, which may direct fresh cancer- screening methods which are overpriced and w without being invasive.
In this new research, scientists found that dogs could sniff out blood samples from cancer patients with almost ideal accuracy.
The dogs correctly identified which sample was from a lung cancer patient 96.7 per cent of the time, according to test results.
The researchers plan to use canine scent detection to develop a non-invasive way of screening for cancer. The results could lead to new cancer-screening approaches that are affordable and accurate without being invasive. As part of the research, four beagles were trained using a clicker to tell the difference between blood from healthy individuals and blood serum samples from people who had malignant lung cancer.
During the next phase the samples will be separated into chemical components to present to the dogs to isolate the substances that are causing the odors that the dogs are detecting, which will hopefully lead to new cancer screening tests.
Scientist and study leader Heather Junqueira trained three beagle pups to detect lung cancer in blood samples.
One beagle - aptly named Snuggles - couldn't be coaxed to participate.
Dogs have smell receptors that are around 10,000 times more sensitive than humans - meaning they can often detect smells unperceivable to humans - and even sniff out smells that are years old.
Lead author Heather Junqueira said: 'Although there is now no cure for cancer, early detection offers the best hope of survival. For more on this, check out this new study about how dogs can smell seizures before they start.
Junqueira will present this research at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology annual meeting during the 2019 Experimental Biology meeting to be held April 6-9 in Orlando, Fla.
In the United Kingdom, there is already a charity using dogs to try and detect cancer by smelling people's breath.