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Personalized Medicine using Molecular Diagnostics
Dr. Timothy Cloughesy explains the process of how Targeted Molecular Therapy works in the Brain Cancer setting.
We are gaining a better understanding as to how brain tumors are formed, and what we have found is that no two tumors are exactly the same. They may look the same under the microscope, but the actual molecular biology and molecular features that are driving tumor growth are actually different between people.
Targeted Molecular Therapy:
Dr. Timothy Cloughesy explains the process of how Targeted Molecular Therapy works in the Brain Cancer setting.

We are also entering a time where we now have the ability to use incredibly focused therapies, and administer a particular drug that blocks specific pathways. Ideally, we would want to know in a patient if that pathway is activated before we go about blocking it. Currently we are able to identify specific proteins and individual pathways that are activated from patient-to-patient, and we are able to begin to target those specific pathways.
It is important to note that the only way we are able to identify these pathway targets is by obtaining tissue at the time of the initial surgery. Currently, we use two types of tissue. One type is frozen tissue.  This tissue is taken at the time of surgery and it is immediately stored in liquid nitrogen, or some -70 degree setting. This freezing preserves many of the molecular features of the tumor including proteins, RNA and DNA. The second type of tissue we are able to use is unstained slides from tissue embedded in paraffin blocks.
If these tissue resources are available we are able to analyze the tissue and look for specific tumor proteins. By identifying if these tumor proteins are absent or present we become better equipped to determine what therapeutic agents to give a patient.

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[Content Published:1/17/2018 1:03:43 AM PST]