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View Full Version : This Seems Hopeful: Slowing Metastasis In Cancer Patients



Kathianne
06-20-2017, 09:02 AM
http://www.baltimoresun.com/health/bs-hs-cancer-trigger-20170625-story.html


Johns Hopkins researchers say they've unlocked key to cancer metastasis and how to slow it Carrie Wells (http://www.baltimoresun.com/bal-carrie-wells-20141006-staff.html#nt=byline)


Hasini Jayatilaka was a sophomore at the Johns Hopkins University working in a lab studying cancer cells when she noticed that when the cells become too densely packed, some would break off and start spreading.


She wasn't sure what to make of it, until she attended an academic conference and heard a speaker talking about bacterial cells behaving the same way. Yet when she went through the academic literature to see if anyone had written about similar behavior in cancer cells, she found nothing.


Seven years later, the theory Jayatilaka developed early in college is now a bona fide discovery that offers significant promise for cancer treatment.


Jayatilaka and a team at Johns Hopkins discovered the biochemical mechanism that tells cancer cells to break off from the primary tumor and spread throughout the body, a process called metastasis. Some 90 percent of cancer deaths are caused when cancer metastasizes. The team also found that two existing, FDA-approved drugs can slow metastasis significantly.

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jimnyc
06-20-2017, 09:06 AM
That would be fantastic. Cancer scares the crap out of me, maybe more so than spiders. :( It's a horrible disease, and one that we all likely have seen take one of our loved ones or friends.

Kathianne
06-20-2017, 09:30 AM
That would be fantastic. Cancer scares the crap out of me, maybe more so than spiders. :( It's a horrible disease, and one that we all likely have seen take one of our loved ones or friends.

As the article points out, rare is it the initial tumor that kills, it's when the cancer 'spreads' which is metastasizes. This seems to address that. I thought it interesting that medical research has tended to put those that work on the tumor studies are a separate focus from those that study the process of metastasis.

If this pans out, it's because of observations she made in her junior undergraduate year, later connecting with what she heard about bacterial infection spread while a post-grad student. Wow.

Abbey
06-20-2017, 03:33 PM
That's fantastic!
I think that in research often fresh eyes with no preconceived notions are best.

Side note: how will this overcrowded earth sustain us all if so many live past cancer?

Kathianne
06-20-2017, 06:09 PM
That's fantastic!
I think that in research often fresh eyes with no preconceived notions are best.

Side note: how will this overcrowded earth sustain us all if so many live past cancer?

There's always a solution in search of a problem. ;)