New Cancer Treatment Strategy by Testing Mini-Tumors

Mini-tumors are one of the best ways of testing new drugs

Recently, scientists have discovered ways in which people suffering from cancer can respond to treatment by growing tiny forms of their tumors in the laboratory.

It is believed that the pioneering work could lead to more effective therapy. The study shows precise information about the type of drugs that would not work perfectly, and this could help patients from unwanted side-effects.

Recently, about 71 Biopsies patients with severe colorectal cancer were diagnosed with miniature 3D cancerous organs in the laboratory. It is a new scientific practice to grow “organoids,” and tiny brains have been easily made inside the laboratory.

Scientists take care of every organoid with a similar drug prescribed by doctors to the patient in the health center. The results showed that if the treatment can work in the organoids, it can also be effective in the patient. If the treatment failed in the organoids, then it would fail in the patient.

To avoid extreme side-effects of a treatment administered to patients that were showing ineffective on mini tumors would help the patient’s overall health significantly.

According to a scientist in the Institute of Cancer Research in London, Dr. Nicola Valeri said, “The first time we confirmed these organoids, it did not only resemble metastatic cancer, but it is identical to what we see in our clinic.”

Mouse models

According to a scientist from the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, Professor David Cunningham said: “This potential research help to promote the field of professional medicine, and it should eventually lead to smarter and more effective treatments for patients.”

Previous research shows that patients would react to treatment. The patient’s cancer also grows them in form of “cancer avatars”.

The most challenging thing is accessing the answers quickly to aid treatment.

According to Dr. Valer, in the past, it is a serious problem when people make use of mouse models. It takes about six to eight months to get detailed results. “Using this technique, we can generate results within few months, and we believe we can go faster.”

However, if the mini-tumors clearly reflect the parent cancer, they could be a useful tool for testing drugs and knowing more about the biology on why cancers can resist treatment. Also, they can be used to check if patients need to partake in clinical trials of new drugs.

According to the chief clinician at Cancer Research center in the United Kingdom, Professor Charles Swanton, “To predict how effective treatments like chemotherapy will be for the individual patient is very difficult because of the lack of accurate tests for doctors.”

“This new technique will help us to test future targeted treatments before trailing them in the clinic.”