Tag Archives: cancer biomarkers

New Biomarker May Predict the Body’s Response to Chemotherapy and Radiation

There is New Hope for Cancer Patients. Don't Give up!
There is New Hope for Cancer Patients. Don’t Give up!

One of the difficulties doctors have in prescribing cancer treatment is knowing which methods will be most effective. That may change with the discovery of a biomarker that may help predict a tumor’s response to chemotherapy and radiation.

How Cell Division Affects Cancer Development

When cells divide, the duplicated chromosomes are pulled apart into the two new cells. A malfunction in this process can lead to chromosomal instability, which has the potential to drive development of cancer cells.

Researchers set out to study the expression of genes associated with normal chromosome division. Specifically, they wanted to find out how genetic changes contribute to chromosomal instability and whether these changes held clues regarding the behavior of tumors.

Genetic Markers of Chromosomal Instability

The team from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory examined 31 genes that had previously been identified as part of the chromosome division process. They discovered that these genes were over- or under-expressed in different types of cancer as opposed to corresponding normal tissue samples.

This led to the development of a 14-gene subset named the Centromere and kinetochore gene Expression Score, or CES. When measuring CES in tumor sample databases, the researchers found that a high score correlated with elevated levels of chromosomal instability.

Based on these encouraging results, researchers are hopeful that the biomarker can be used to predict response to cancer treatment as well as prognosis with or without treatment.

Immunotherapy: An Integrative Approach to Cancer Treatment

Immunotherapy at IsselsĀ® doesn’t carry the risk of debilitating side effects that accompanies traditional cancer treatments. Contact us for more information.

New Treatment Medications Target Biomarkers in Cancer Versus Location

New Treatment Medications Target Biomarkers in Cancer Versus Location
New Treatment Medications Target Biomarkers in Cancer Versus Location

For many years, cancer treatment has traditionally focused on a tumor’s point of origin. A new form of immunotherapy for cancer that targets biomarkers could open the door for more precise and effective treatment of tumors.

Keytruda: A “Presidential” Immunotherapy for Cancer

Keytruda is the brand name of a drug that had previously been used to treat specific types of cancer such as melanoma and Hodgkin’s lymphoma, often during Stage IV. The drug earned public notice when former president Jimmy Carter received successful treatment for brain tumors resulting from Stage IV melanoma.

In May 2017, after five clinical trials, the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) approved Keytruda for use in treating tumors with a particular biomarker, regardless of location. At this point, the new use of Keytruda is limited to patients for whom other therapies have been unsuccessful.

Cutting Through the Red Tape

The new application for Keytruda was fast-tracked under the FDA’s Accelerated Approval program. If there’s a serious condition with no options for treatment, a drug can be approved solely on the basis that it’s been shown to shrink tumors.

Dr. Gwen Nichols, chief medical officer of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), expressed excitement for the new approval process. According to Nichols, it lets researchers focus on the biology of tumor development instead of looking for generic treatments.

Immunotherapy for Cancer Is the Talk of the Medical Community

Doctors and scientists have been buzzing about advancements in immunotherapy, but IsselsĀ® has been ahead of the curve for decades. Visit our website to learn more about our innovative immunotherapy for cancer treatments that are personally tailored for your individual needs.