About Careers Internship MedBlog Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Tailored Gene Therapies May Boost Brain Cancer Patients’ Survival

by Nancy Needhima on January 11, 2012 at 10:08 PM
Font : A-A+

Tailored Gene Therapies May Boost Brain Cancer Patients’ Survival

Individualised prognostic tools and gene-based therapies can enhance the survival and quality of life of patients with glioblastoma, an aggressively fatal type of brain cancer, reports a new study by University of Illinois funded by the NIH National Cancer Institute.

"We confirmed known biomarkers of glioblastoma survival and discovered new general and clinical-dependent gene profiles," said Nicola Serao, a U of I Ph.D. candidate in animal sciences with a focus in statistical genomics. "We were able to compare biomarkers across three glioblastoma phases that helped us gain insight into the roles of genes associated with cancer survival."

Advertisement

Glioblastoma is a complex, multifactorial disease that has swift and devastating consequences, Serao said. Although some genes have been associated with the presence of glioblastoma, few have been identified as prognostic biomarkers of glioblastoma survival and fewer have been confirmed in independent reports.

"You can't just find one gene that is related to this cancer and fix it," he said. "This is one of the aspects of our research that makes it unique. We were able to look at several genes at the same time and relate our findings to this cancer."
Advertisement

Using genomic information from more than 22,000 genes, Serao took this huge piece of information and began slicing away at it, one gene at a time, until he ended up with a group of genes related to brain cancer.

He studied different survival variables, including length of survival from birth to death, from diagnosis to death, and from diagnosis to progression of the cancer.

"We studied different variables, but they were complementary, and allowed us to learn more about those genes," he said. "We understand that some genes have much more impact in cancer than others. And we also discovered that some genes only appeared in one variable, so they were specific for a given phase of cancer."

This study not only evaluated genes influencing survival, but also took into consideration clinical factors such as age, race and gender.

"Our research suggests you can't treat all patients the same," Serao said. "For example, we found gene expression patterns that have different, and sometimes opposite, relationships with survival in males and females and concluded that treatments affecting these genes will not be equally effective. Personalized therapy dependent on gender, race and age is something that is possible today with our advanced genomic tools."

Recognizing that genes seldom act alone, this team of researchers took several genes into consideration at the same time and uncovered networks of genes related to glioblastoma survival.

Sandra Rodriguez Zas, co-researcher and U of I professor of animal science and bioinformatics, said they looked at commonalities between the genes linked to glioblastoma survival and progression, too.

"If a large number of genes linked to survival belong to a particular pathway, this pathway is considered enriched," Rodriguez Zas said. "Depending on whether the pathway and genes have tumor suppressor or oncogenic characteristics, we should be able to use that information to support or attack that pathway with targeted therapies."

Gaining a deeper understanding of the biological meaning, or roles, for these genes will provide researchers with even more ammunition to fight this deadly form of brain cancer.

"Because of the innovative approach we used, we believe we can more confidently predict whether a patient will have a shorter or longer survival rate and select the most adequate therapies," she said.

This study, "Cell cycle and aging, morphogenesis, and response to stimuli genes are individualized biomarkers of glioblastoma progression and survival," was published in BMC Medical Genomics. Researchers include Nicola Serao, Kristin Delfino, Bruce Southey, Jonathan Beever and Sandra Rodriguez Zas of the University of Illinois.

Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
What's New on Medindia
World Heart Day in 2022- Use Heart for Every Heart
Anemia among Indian Women and Children Remains a Cause of Concern- National Family Health Survey-5
H1N1 Influenza Prevention in Children: What Parents Need to Know
View all
Recommended Reading
News Archive
Date
Category
News Category

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
DNA Finger Printing Parkinsons Disease Cancer and Homeopathy Parkinsons Disease Surgical Treatment Cancer Facts Cancer Tattoos A Body Art Brain Brain Facts Ataxia 

Most Popular on Medindia

Accident and Trauma Care The Essence of Yoga Drug Side Effects Calculator Blood Donation - Recipients Loram (2 mg) (Lorazepam) Sanatogen Noscaphene (Noscapine) Sinopril (2mg) (Lacidipine) Find a Doctor Turmeric Powder - Health Benefits, Uses & Side Effects
This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use
open close
ASK A DOCTOR ONLINE

×

Tailored Gene Therapies May Boost Brain Cancer Patients’ Survival Personalised Printable Document (PDF)

Please complete this form and we'll send you a personalised information that is requested

You may use this for your own reference or forward it to your friends.

Please use the information prudently. If you are not a medical doctor please remember to consult your healthcare provider as this information is not a substitute for professional advice.

Name *

Email Address *

Country *

Areas of Interests