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Cancer Research

New Tumour Profiling Unit hopes to better target cancer treatments

The Institute of Cancer Research in London is hoping to use a tumour’s DNA to better track cancer treatment.

THERE ARE HOPES that the sampling of tumour DNA could give rise to better targeted cancer treatments.

In addition to tailoring treatments to better exploit the weaknesses of particular cancers, the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) is also hopeful to be able to better monitor changes in tumours over time, including being able to better determine when drugs are no longer having the desired effect.

The news comes following the announcement that London-based ICR is to set up a new Tumour Profiling Unit to take advantage of advances in gene sequencing technologies.

It is hoped that the molecular causes of drug resistance will now be identifiable via the sampling of tumour DNA throughout patient treatment.

A spokesperson from the ICR told that the new Tumour Profiling Unit would enable them to increase their knowledge of how new drugs – which have been specifically developed to impact on key targets in or around the cancer cells – will work.

Having already tested the drugs against cancer cells in test tubes, the next step is to attempt to target the cancer cells of the patient actually being treated.

Once this has been achieved, the institute hope that more personalised medicines will be able to better treat tumours in patients.

Read: Campaign aims to turn jewellery into funding for cancer research >

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