Personalised cancer treatment comes closer to reality

April 20th, 2009 - 6:29 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Apr 20 (ANI): Researchers have taken a step forward to bringing personalized cancer therapy within reach by using molecular profiling of the patients that can help identify specific treatments.

The study shows that molecular profiling of patients can identify specific treatments for individuals, helping keep their cancer in check for significantly longer periods, and in some cases even shrinking tumours.

During the research, the team recruited 66 patients at nine centres across the United States, including Scottsdale Heathcare.

All of the patients had previously experienced growth of their tumours while undergoing as many as two to six prior cancer treatments, including conventional chemotherapy.

However, after molecular profiling identified precise targets, new treatments were administered that resulted in patients experiencing significant periods of time when there was no progression of their cancer.

The treatments would be prescribed based on an individual’s specific genetic makeup. The type of drugs, dosages, their delivery and other treatment aspects - all are based on each patient’s individual medical needs.

The research team found that patients experienced varying levels of improvement. Among those with breast cancer, the period of progression-free survival increased for 44 percent of patients; for colorectal, 36 percent of patients; for ovarian, 20 percent of patients; and for miscellaneous cancers the improvement was seen in 16 percent of patients.

“With this trial, we are showing the power of personalized medicine using the tools we already have available to us,” said Dr. Von Hoff, Chief Scientific Officer of TGen Clinical Research Services (TCRS) at Scottsdale Healthcare.

“As these tools become more precise and more effective, the value of personalized medicine will increase,” he added.

“This trial is evidence of an important breakthrough in the treatment of cancer,” said David D. Halbert, Chairman and CEO of Caris Diagnostics.

The molecular profiling for this research study was performed by Caris Diagnostics (Caris Dx) in Phoenix.

The study was presented at 100th annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research in Denver. (ANI)

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