What Is PATHFINDER?

Cleveland Clinic is participating in the PATHFINDER Study, a clinical trial that aims to detect cancer earlier, through a single blood test. Developed by GRAIL (also the study sponsor), this blood test is designed to detect more than 50 cancers, as well as their location in the body, before symptoms present – with a very low false positive rate.

How does the PATHFINDER study work?

The PATHFINDER study plans to enroll approximately 6,200 people across several health systems, and follow their experience and care for at least one year. If a signal that may be cancer is detected, the test is designed to identify where the signal may be coming from, for example, the pancreas or the lungs. This information will help guide healthcare providers to determine the appropriate diagnostic test(s) to confirm whether cancer is present.

Why should I participate?

Despite many advances, cancer remains the second leading cause of death worldwide. Today, there is no screening available for the majority of life threatening cancers, and as a result, most cancers are not detected until too late when outcomes are poor. The earlier cancer is diagnosed, the better the chance of successful treatment, but cancer can spread and grow before any symptoms arise.

The PATHFINDER study will contribute to a greater understanding of how this test may be implemented in routine health care to help more people increase their chances of finding cancer early, when treatment is more likely to be successful.

Your participation in clinical trials could make a difference for your family and your community, as well improve treatment outcomes for cancer patients around the world.

Who is eligible to participate?

The study is currently open to men and women aged 50 years or older who are either:

  • Healthy individuals at an average risk for cancer.
  • Individuals with an increased risk of cancer, meaning they:
    • Have smoked at least 100 cigarettes in their lifetime.
    • Have a known genetic syndrome (BRCA, HNPCC, Lynch, etc.) that increase cancer risk.
    • Have been treated for an invasive cancer at least three years ago, and currently cancer-free.

If you are interested in finding out if you are a candidate for the study, please complete the form at the bottom of this page. A study coordinator will be in contact to discuss your eligibility and next steps. If eligible, the initial consultation will be conducted virtually, and an appointment for a blood test will be scheduled at a Cleveland Clinic location below. You must have a scheduled appointment for a blood test.

We also recommend you review our consent document, which provides additional details on the study. Please note, this document is for review purposes only. Once you are contacted by the coordinator and eligible for the study, you will be provided a consent form to sign.

PATHFINDER is a research study not yet approved by the FDA, but being conducted under an investigational device exemption (IDE) application. The test is intended to be complementary to, and not a replacement of, U.S. guideline-recommended cancer screenings your healthcare provider may recommend, such as colonoscopy or mammography.

Where are the Cleveland Clinic labs that I can visit for my blood test?

Cleveland Clinic labs on a map for PATHFINDER study

Get Directions to a Lab Near You:

I'm interested in learning more. How do I get started?

Interested in finding out if you are a candidate for PATHFINDER? Please complete the form below and a member of our research team will contact you.