Combinations of cancer drugs can be quickly and cheaply tested on tumour cells using a novel device developed by EMBL scientists. The research, reported in Nature Communications on June 22, marks the latest advancement in the field of personalised medicine.
Using a microfluidic device that fits in the palm of your hand, scientists screened over 1100 treatment conditions (56 drug combinations x 20 replicates) on patient tumour cells. In the future, such tests could be used to inform clinicians on safe and effective combinations of cancer treatments. This research, incorporating fundamental science alongside clinical expertise at Aachen University Hospital, was led by EMBL group leader Christoph Merten and Julio Saez-Rodriguez, former group leader at EMBL-EBI and now Professor at Heidelberg University.
Small biopsies, many drugs
Directly testing multiple cancer drugs on biopsies – parts of the tumour which have been taken from a patient – is a powerful way to discover which drugs work best, and for whom. This is because depending on the specific tumour characteristics, cancer therapies can be more effective in some people than others. However, large-scale patient specific drug screenings have so far been limited by the small biopsy size that can typically be obtained from patients. That is why in the current paper, the team developed a miniaturised device which can test more drugs on a limited number of cells.
The research team initially tested 56 drug combinations on two different human cancer cell types grown in the lab. Drug combinations which killed both types of cancer cells were thought to be potentially toxic and thus unsafe for further testing. However, some drug combinations which targeted and killed only one type of cancer cell were found to be more effective than standard clinical therapies which only use one drug. These results were highly reproducible and could be validated in mouse models of human cancer.
Subsequently, cells from four cancer patient biopsies were applied to the microfluidic device and different drug combinations were tested. “We found that each individual cancer responded best to a different combination of drugs, highlighting the urgent need for patient-specific therapies,” says Federica Eduati, joint first author on the paper alongside Ramesh Utharala who designed and developed the microfluidic device.
“Before we transfer this technology into the clinics, we need to repeat these experiments in larger-scale mouse studies to understand which types of cancer this technology works best in,” says Christoph Merten. “Still, this is an exciting ‘proof of principle’ collaboration between scientists and clinicians, and we have shown that these tests can be run quickly and for less than $150 USD per patient.”
The Latest on: Personalized medicine
via Google News
The Latest on: Personalized medicine
- Doctors Save Young Ballerina’s Life, Career With Personalized Cancer Treatmenton August 12, 2019 at 2:40 pm
Personalized medicine, however, takes the approach that there may be other ways to get to the goal line that takes the patient’s other needs into account. That’s what saved Valle’s leg and career.
- Recruiting The Dalai Lama To Bring Compassion Back Into Medicineon August 9, 2019 at 12:32 pm
Ralph Snyderman is known as “The Father of Personalized Medicine.” He used to oversee the selection of medical students at Duke University in his role as chancellor for health affairs at Duke ...
- DNA, fruit flies and the quest to treat cancer with precision medicineon August 6, 2019 at 5:48 am
Instead, cancer researchers are focused on finding ways to treat individual strains of the disease through personalized or precision medicine. “Cancer therapy is becoming customized to each ...
- Pharmazam Launches Personalized Real-Time Medication Management and Healthcare Systemon August 6, 2019 at 5:34 am
Pharmazam, LLC is a Tampa, Florida-based biotech licensed healthcare technology firm delivering personalized medicine and healthcare management solutions through integrated technologies and ...
- Understanding the Difference Between Precision Medicine and Personalized Care for Lung Canceron August 5, 2019 at 11:25 am
Ravi Salgia, MD, professor and chair, Department of Medical Oncology & Therapeutics Research, associate director for clinical sciences, City of Hope, Durante, California, says there is a difference ...
- Personalized Medicine Market Size to Garner more than US$ 1.7 Trillion by 2026on August 1, 2019 at 5:01 am
Aug 01, 2019 (Global QYResearch via COMTEX) -- The Global Personalized Medicine Market size projected to register US$ 4 billion by 2026 and market growing at noteworthy CAGR around 1 % from 2019 to ...
- Personalized Medicine Research Report 2019: Focus on Scientific & Commercial Aspects to 2028 - ResearchAndMarkets.comon July 31, 2019 at 2:29 am
DUBLIN--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The "Personalized Medicine - Scientific & Commercial Aspects" report from Jain PharmaBiotech has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com's offering. Profiles of 338 companies ...
- Scientific & Commercial Analysis of the Global Personalized Medicine Market, 2028 with Profiles of 350+ Companies with 616 Collaborationson July 30, 2019 at 5:00 pm
DUBLIN, July 31, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- The "Personalized Medicine - Scientific & Commercial Aspects" report from Jain PharmaBiotech has been added to ResearchAndMarkets.com's offering. Profiles of 338 ...
- Expanding the limits of personalized medicine with high-performance computingon July 24, 2019 at 5:00 pm
Imagine that you have a serious medical condition. Then imagine that when you visit a team of doctors, they could build an identical virtual 'twin' of the condition and simulate millions of ways to ...
via Bing News