Posts Tagged ‘targeted therapy’

Breaking through the limits of cancer medicine

Gordon Mills, M.D., Ph.D., the new director of precision oncology at Oregon Health & Science University, outlines his vision for the field   Gordon Mills, M.D., Ph.D. (OHSU/Kristyna Wentz-Graff)   The cancer diagnosis, a rare sarcoma, was devastating for an old friend of Gordon Mills. “We spent lots of time trying to understand his disease, trying to characterize it, and he went to my colleagues to ask about what was the next therapy for him,” Mills … Read More

Zeroing in on drug combos against a formidable form of leukemia

  Targeted cancer therapies work by singling out gene mutations that drive tumor growth, then using a drug to block the effects of the mutant gene. But tumors consist of millions of cells that may collectively harbor hundreds of different “driver” mutations. That means therapies for some cancers will have to target more than one mutation at a time to be successful. To help solve the problem, researchers at Oregon Health & Science University devised … Read More

Riveting survival stories from the early clinical trials of Gleevec

Medicine had never seen anything like it before, Brian Druker, M.D., recalled. “These are people who’d been told to get their affairs in order. And now their blood counts are normal,” the director of the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute told Stat News reporter Bob Tedeschi. “But here’s the problem: When can you celebrate? I felt a little bit like walking on eggshells, because it’s like, OK, is this going to be a flash in the … Read More

The cancer drug that “changed everything”

Understanding the earliest drivers of cancer formation can lead to less toxic and more effective treatments.   It transformed the outlook for people diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia. A disease with a three- to five-year life expectancy became, for most patients, a chronic, long-term condition managed with a daily pill. And this week, researchers published the outcomes of people treated for more than 10 years with the drug imatinib (Gleevec), ushered from lab to clinical … Read More

When it’s time to stop a lifesaving cancer drug to find out if you are cured

The depth of remission achieved with the targeted therapy imatinib (Gleevec) raises a tough new question for some leukemia patients: is it ever safe to stop taking the breakthrough drug developed at OHSU?

Enterprising cancer treatment ideas nurtured with pilot funds

Finding new treatment targets for aggressive prostate cancer, lymphoma and leukemia. Visualizing how breast tumors grow resistant to drug therapy. Using mobile phone sensors to track symptoms in patients with pancreatic cancer. These are some of the new pilot projects funded by the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute.

This is what a ‘game changing’ cancer therapy looks like

Gleevec binds to the kinase domain of the mutant enzyme BCR-ABL1   Life expectancy in patients with chronic myeloid leukemia has soared to a level almost equal to that of the general population, according to a Swedish study quantifying the life-saving impact of Gleevec, the targeted therapy ushered from lab bench to clinical success by Brian Druker, M.D., director of the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute.

Engineering precision in cancer early detection

Sadik Esener, Ph.D., the engineer tapped to lead a major new cancer early detection program at the OHSU Knight Cancer Institute.   Medical science has come up with only a few ways to detect incipient cancers in healthy people. None of them can distinguish the aggressive, life-threatening cases from those that are unlikely to become lethal. Researchers have spent decades, for instance, trying to develop a screening test for ovarian cancer. Most women with this … Read More

Genomic drivers of a poorly understood kidney cancer

Researchers have identified many of the altered genes and cell signaling pathways that drive papillary renal cell carcinoma, a poorly understood form of cancer that accounts for about 15 percent of kidney tumors. The findings, published today in the New England Journal of Medicine, are likely to affect clinical recommendations, and should help guide the development of more precisely targeted therapies. No effective treatment exists for advanced papillary renal cell carcinoma.

Targeting leukemia with drug combinations

Targeting leukemia with drug combinations

Cancer researchers have devised a way to rapidly screen combinations of drugs to identify pairs of agents most likely to work synergistically against some of the most difficult to treat forms of leukemia.