Cancer, whether in the pancreas or in the liver, can take on different characteristics and spread in different ways. That's why, there's no one-size-fits-all drug to help patients fight back.
But a new test can personalize treatment and help oncologists choose which chemotherapy route to take. The test, called Dynamic BH3 Profiling, quickly predicts whether or not a drug will work for a patient by first trying that drug on a tumor sample in the lab.
AdvertisementA paper describing the method, which researchers say could become more widespread within a couple of years, was published in the journal Cell this week.
Study author Dr. Anthony Letai, a cancer researcher with the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute said, "When we're trying to choose antibiotics for people. We simply isolate the bacteria that's causing the problem and expose it to all the drugs that are available," he says. "Then we choose the drugs that best put a lid on the multiplying bacteria. That has operated for many, many decades. so we thought, why not do that for cancer cells?" says Letai.