Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Researchers find genetic clue to cancer relapse


Cancer researchers at Perth’s Telethon Institute for Child Health Research (TICHR) have developed a new test that can rapidly detect the loss of genes in cancer cells, paving the way for more targeted and effective treatments for patients.

Australian Cancer Technology (AustCancer, ASX:ACU) today announced that it has entered into a partnership agreement with the Institute to commercialise this novel technology and bring it to the market as quickly as possible.

Professor Ursula Kees, who heads the Children’s Leukaemia and Cancer Research Division at TICHR, said the development of a fast, simple gene test could significantly improve patient outcomes.

"Our research in a group of cancer patients has shown that those patients with cancer cells that have lost a specific tumour suppressor gene are at greater risk of relapse," she said.

"If their doctors can determine the genetic makeup of the cancer at an early stage, then they will have a very important indicator of the type of treatment that will be most effective."

"Current methods for testing the loss of genes in cancer cells are expensive and relatively slow. The new technology that we have developed is fast, simple and can be applied at low cost - in fact it uses standard equipment found in most diagnostic labs."

Professor Kees said in studies on children with acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL), which were published in the prestigious journal ’Blood’, her team had shown that this technology is effective in measuring the deletion of an important tumour suppressor gene. The studies also showed that the gene’s absence pointed to a 11-fold higher risk of relapse.

"Testing cancer cells to determine whether a gene is missing has always been considered very difficult because patient specimens always contain normal cells, and the genetic differences that we’re looking for are very subtle. This new technology can detect those very small differences."

Paul Hopper, managing director of AustCancer said his company would be determining the most appropriate commercial model by which the test can be rapidly brought to the market.

"We believe that, as medical science’s understanding of the role of genes in cancer grows, an inexpensive, quick and routine gene test will become essential in the diagnosis of many types of cancer. The technology is patented and we have embarked on a research program with the Institute to expand its utility to other important cancer genes."

Director of the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research, Professor Fiona Stanley, said the Institute was delighted to partner with AustCancer on this discovery because of their strong credentials in the field.

"It’s important that we make sure that the benefits of our research are seen by the patients as soon as possible. This partnership will ensure that we can now take this discovery to the next stage of development."


Liz Chester
Media Liaison Manager
Telethon Institute for Child Health Research
Phone: +61 409 988 530

Paul Hopper
Managing Director
Australian Cancer Technology
Phone: +61 407 118 366 or +61 2 9252 6899

Mike Feehan
Monsoon Communications
Phone: +61 3 9620 3333

| Monsoon Communications
Further information:

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Space observation with radar to secure Germany's space infrastructure

Satellites in near-Earth orbit are at risk due to the steady increase in space debris. But their mission in the areas of telecommunications, navigation or weather forecasts is essential for society. Fraunhofer FHR therefore develops radar-based systems which allow the detection, tracking and cataloging of even the smallest particles of debris. Satellite operators who have access to our data are in a better position to plan evasive maneuvers and prevent destructive collisions. From April, 25-29 2018, Fraunhofer FHR and its partners will exhibit the complementary radar systems TIRA and GESTRA as well as the latest radar techniques for space observation across three stands at the ILA Berlin.

The "traffic situation" in space is very tense: the Earth is currently being orbited not only by countless satellites but also by a large volume of space...

Im Focus: Researchers Discover New Anti-Cancer Protein

An international team of researchers has discovered a new anti-cancer protein. The protein, called LHPP, prevents the uncontrolled proliferation of cancer cells in the liver. The researchers led by Prof. Michael N. Hall from the Biozentrum, University of Basel, report in “Nature” that LHPP can also serve as a biomarker for the diagnosis and prognosis of liver cancer.

The incidence of liver cancer, also known as hepatocellular carcinoma, is steadily increasing. In the last twenty years, the number of cases has almost doubled...

Im Focus: Researchers at Fraunhofer monitor re-entry of Chinese space station Tiangong-1

In just a few weeks from now, the Chinese space station Tiangong-1 will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere where it will to a large extent burn up. It is possible that some debris will reach the Earth's surface. Tiangong-1 is orbiting the Earth uncontrolled at a speed of approx. 29,000 km/h.Currently the prognosis relating to the time of impact currently lies within a window of several days. The scientists at Fraunhofer FHR have already been monitoring Tiangong-1 for a number of weeks with their TIRA system, one of the most powerful space observation radars in the world, with a view to supporting the German Space Situational Awareness Center and the ESA with their re-entry forecasts.

Following the loss of radio contact with Tiangong-1 in 2016 and due to the low orbital height, it is now inevitable that the Chinese space station will...

Im Focus: Alliance „OLED Licht Forum“ – Key partner for OLED lighting solutions

Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, provider of research and development services for OLED lighting solutions, announces the founding of the “OLED Licht Forum” and presents latest OLED design and lighting solutions during light+building, from March 18th – 23rd, 2018 in Frankfurt a.M./Germany, at booth no. F91 in Hall 4.0.

They are united in their passion for OLED (organic light emitting diodes) lighting with all of its unique facets and application possibilities. Thus experts in...

Im Focus: Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

Oceans formed before Tharsis and evolved together, shaping climate history of Mars

A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

New solar solutions for sustainable buildings and cities

23.03.2018 | Event News

Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen

19.03.2018 | Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

For graphite pellets, just add elbow grease

23.03.2018 | Materials Sciences

Unique communication strategy discovered in stem cell pathway controlling plant growth

23.03.2018 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

Sharpening the X-ray view of the nanocosm

23.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>