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Lung Cancer Treatment Breakthrough


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Video URL: http://www.13wham.com/mediacenter/local ... wokr13.com

13WHAM.com (Liz Bonis)

A recent discovery could lead to a big breakthrough in treating lung cancer.

As part of a national trial, lab researchers say they've found a pathway that could someday help with targeted treatment in chemotherapy.

Recent studies show that a combination of surgery and chemotherapy may be more effective for some lung cancer patients than treating with either therapy alone.

The problem is chemo treatment can be trial and error; researchers don't know who will benefit from taking these drugs or which drugs might work best in certain patients.

Researcher Dr. Michael Reed said, “It would be ideal to be able to know ahead of time, before treatment which combinations of medications have the highest likelihood of success.”

Reed’s team recently published a study in the journal Cancer Research which details a remarkable discovery. They found that turning off a certain tumor suppressor or pathway that controls the growth of cells, alters the response of lung cancer cells to chemotherapy.

“Right now we are studying the response to specific individual agents. In the real world, we treat with combination therapy. Our next step is to start using a combination of agents to be able to better predict in a more realistic setting response to therapy,” Reed said.

That means, eventually, doctors could target chemo based on a patient’s specific type of tumor.

This study was funded from a grant from the National Institutes of Health. Final results are not expected for at least a couple more years.

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