This week seems to only bring great news in the field of cancer research. Yesterday we got some great news about non-invasive cancer screening and prognosis: DNA shed by tumors could lead to non-invasive procedures that could detect or treat different types of cancer and now we’ve got more great news: an aggressive form of lung cancer is targeted by potential new drug.
The aggressive form of lung cancer is called small cell lung cancer and it is a highly lethal for cancer which is linked to smoking. A new study has found that genetic interruptions and other mutations that occur in the development of the cancer could help a potential new drug target the disease.
Hope for Small cell Lung Cancer – The Most Aggressive Form of Lung Cancer
The Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at the MIT and the Broad institute published the results of the study in the Cell journal. They explain that as the cancer cells multiply, grow and spread in the body, they go through genetic modifications or mutations. These mutations allow the cells to grow to massive numbers, while other cancer cells simply follow the ones that grow and spread.
The researchers managed to identify the tumor cells that managed to break free and spread to other organs, which is a breakthrough in the research of the most aggressive from of lung cancer.
Right now, patients who suffer from small cell lung cancer are being treated with chemotherapy and radiation therapy – both carrying severe side effects. Understanding how the cancers cells behave will help the creation of a new drug that targets those very cells.
The study was performed on mice, but they were not exposed to cigarette smoke, which make it easier to isolate the cells that break free and spread to other organs.
Although this study is just small and it’s just opening the doors into the discovery of a new drug to treat or cure the most aggressive form of lung cancer, there is a ray of light that promises a lot.