Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Cancer Center test helps reduce risk of death in advanced lung cancer

12.10.2011
Identifies key protein, boon for personalized medicine

Researchers at the University of Colorado Cancer Center have developed a test that identifies key biomarkers in advanced lung cancer that helped reduce the risk of death by 36 percent over a 30- month period in a recent clinical trial.

"We are moving from a one-size-fits-all model to more personalized medicine in lung cancer," said University of Colorado School of Medicine Professor Fred R. Hirsch, MD, Ph.D., a Cancer Center investigator who developed the test along with colleague Wilbur Franklin, MD. "This is a completely new paradigm in treating cancer."

The test was developed in 2003 when Hirsch and his colleagues created a scoring system ranging from 0 to 400 that identified patients with the highest levels of the protein Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR). Those scoring over 200 had a better prognosis.

A clinical trial held in Europe known as the FLEX-study, found that 30 percent of the advanced lung cancer patients who took part had high levels of the EGFR protein identified by the University of Colorado Cancer Center test.

The trial consisted of 1,125 advanced lung cancer patients separated into two groups. One group received standard chemotherapy while the other had chemotherapy along with the drug cetuximab, an antibody that attaches to EGFR receptors atop lung cancer cells and often inhibits their growth.

The results were announced two weeks ago at the 2011 European Multidisciplinary Cancer Conference in Stockholm.

Using the Cancer Center test, the trial showed that Caucasian patients with an over expression of EGFR and treated with chemotherapy and cetuximab had a 36 percent reduction in deaths compared to the other group.

Cetuximab, or Erbitux, is primarily used to fight colo-rectal and head and neck cancers.

Hirsch, who discussed the study results at the Stockholm conference, said the test is another step toward finding the best, most effective therapy for each patient.

"With this personalized medicine we can identify subgroups of patients that can get better effects from certain drugs," he said. "In some cases there is a potential for a cure. Right now the cure rate for advanced lung cancer is two to three percent at best. This is a huge improvement but everything is based on the selection criteria."

The CU School of Medicine is a prominent leader in lung cancer research. D. Ross Camidge, MD, Ph.D., clinical director of the Thoracic Oncology Program at the University of Colorado Hospital and a Cancer Center investigator, has helped develop effective drug treatments for patients with the ALK gene rearrangement, an abnormality that occurs in three to five percent of lung cancer patients.

Hirsch is currently leading a clinical trial with colleagues in the Southwest Oncology Group that is similar to the European study. He hopes it will further validate the predictive value of the test in relation to using cetuximab in patients with advanced lung cancer. The study (SWOG 0819) has 550 participants and expects 1,500 total.

Hirsch's research laboratory specializes in identifying biomarkers which can predict benefits from new cancer drugs and place the right patients with the right therapy.

The results of the European trial are expected to be published in an upcoming edition of The Lancet Oncology.

The University of Colorado Cancer Center is Colorado's only National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center. Headquartered on the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, the center is a consortium of three state universities (Colorado State University, University of Colorado at Boulder and University of Colorado Denver) and six institutions (Children's Hospital Colorado, Denver Health, Denver VA Medical Center, Kaiser Permanente Colorado, National Jewish Health and University of Colorado Hospital).

Together, our 440+ members work to relieve suffering from cancer by discovering, developing and delivering breakthroughs in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of cancer for the citizens of Colorado, the region and beyond. Learn more at www.coloradocancercenter.org.

David Kelly | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.ucdenver.edu
http://www.coloradocancercenter.org

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Lung images of twins with asthma add to understanding of the disease
05.12.2019 | University of Western Ontario

nachricht Between Arousal and Inhibition
05.12.2019 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

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: The coldest reaction

With ultracold chemistry, researchers get a first look at exactly what happens during a chemical reaction

The coldest chemical reaction in the known universe took place in what appears to be a chaotic mess of lasers. The appearance deceives: Deep within that...

Im Focus: How do scars form? Fascia function as a repository of mobile scar tissue

Abnormal scarring is a serious threat resulting in non-healing chronic wounds or fibrosis. Scars form when fibroblasts, a type of cell of connective tissue, reach wounded skin and deposit plugs of extracellular matrix. Until today, the question about the exact anatomical origin of these fibroblasts has not been answered. In order to find potential ways of influencing the scarring process, the team of Dr. Yuval Rinkevich, Group Leader for Regenerative Biology at the Institute of Lung Biology and Disease at Helmholtz Zentrum München, aimed to finally find an answer. As it was already known that all scars derive from a fibroblast lineage expressing the Engrailed-1 gene - a lineage not only present in skin, but also in fascia - the researchers intentionally tried to understand whether or not fascia might be the origin of fibroblasts.

Fibroblasts kit - ready to heal wounds

Im Focus: McMaster researcher warns plastic pollution in Great Lakes growing concern to ecosystem

Research from a leading international expert on the health of the Great Lakes suggests that the growing intensity and scale of pollution from plastics poses serious risks to human health and will continue to have profound consequences on the ecosystem.

In an article published this month in the Journal of Waste Resources and Recycling, Gail Krantzberg, a professor in the Booth School of Engineering Practice...

Im Focus: Machine learning microscope adapts lighting to improve diagnosis

Prototype microscope teaches itself the best illumination settings for diagnosing malaria

Engineers at Duke University have developed a microscope that adapts its lighting angles, colors and patterns while teaching itself the optimal...

Im Focus: Small particles, big effects: How graphene nanoparticles improve the resolution of microscopes

Conventional light microscopes cannot distinguish structures when they are separated by a distance smaller than, roughly, the wavelength of light. Superresolution microscopy, developed since the 1980s, lifts this limitation, using fluorescent moieties. Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research have now discovered that graphene nano-molecules can be used to improve this microscopy technique. These graphene nano-molecules offer a number of substantial advantages over the materials previously used, making superresolution microscopy even more versatile.

Microscopy is an important investigation method, in physics, biology, medicine, and many other sciences. However, it has one disadvantage: its resolution is...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

The Future of Work

03.12.2019 | Event News

First International Conference on Agrophotovoltaics in August 2020

15.11.2019 | Event News

Laser Symposium on Electromobility in Aachen: trends for the mobility revolution

15.11.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Detailed insight into stressed cells

05.12.2019 | Life Sciences

State of 'hibernation' keeps haematopoietic stem cells young - Niches in the bone marrow protect from ageing

05.12.2019 | Life Sciences

First field measurements of laughing gas isotopes

05.12.2019 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>