Personalised cancer management
There is mounting interest in bio-markers that may predict tumour biology and simultaneously serve as therapeutic targets. A simple blood test allows the investigation of those markers on the tumour cell genes
Optimised reverse-transcription PCR (RT-PCR), tissue microarray analysis or immunohistochemistry allow us to query various pathways, molecular signals and proteins in order to predict tumour behavior.
Investigators are able to determine differential levels of expression of various markers in normal cells compared with indolent and aggressive tumours. With such technology, a wide array of bio-markers has been presented in the literature with encouraging data.
This enables us to
- Determine the presence of “circulating tumour cells” in the blood stream
- Examine the genetic behaviour of those tumour cells
- Investigate for chemotherapy sensitivity. All chemotherapy agents are being tested to see which one works most effectively in “killing off” those tumour cells. This has enormous implication when one needs to choose chemotherapy by the oncologist.
- Investigate for natural product sensitivity.