Personalizing pancreatic cancer treatment by growing, treating tumors in a dish

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
petri dish hand x facebook
Image: Healthline

Only about 15% of advanced pancreatic patients are alive two years after their diagnosis. Margaret Schwarzhans has now made it 2 1/2 years – and not just survived, but thrived.

Using experimental protocols, some of Schwarzhans’ tumor cells are growing in lab dishes at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. Those avatars of her own tumor, tiny balls of cells called organoids, can be distributed among lab dishes and each dosed with a different drug. If the 3D mini-tumors in one treated dish die off, researchers have good reason to suspect that the drug added to that dish will kill off her cancer cells, too.

Related article:  AI and digital health devices: FDA’s new guidelines seek to ‘strike a delicate balance’ between safety and innovation

[Schwarzhans] is part of a clinical trial in which a patient’s own tumor cells are grown and tested this way in a first step toward personalized cancer treatment. This early-stage trial, the first where a report on the organoid drug response is generated and given to a doctor, isn’t yet aimed at guiding therapy.

But the lead researcher is already using the results in treating patients including Schwarzhans, taking them into account when deciding which drug she should try after the most common therapy began failing her.

Read full, original post: Growing tumors in a dish, scientists try to personalize pancreatic cancer treatment

Outbreak Featured
Infographic: Gene transfer mystery — How 'antifreeze' genes jumped from one species to another without sex

Infographic: Gene transfer mystery — How ‘antifreeze’ genes jumped from one species to another without sex

It isn’t surprising... that herrings and smelts, two groups of fish that commonly roam the northernmost reaches of the Atlantic ...
a bee covered in pollen x

Are GMOs and pesticides threatening bees?

First introduced in 1995, neonicotinoids ...
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

* indicates required
Email Lists
glp menu logo outlined

Get news on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.