8 nuove scoperte nella lotta contro il cancro

“Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide, with approximately 10 million deaths each year due to this disease. Scientists are using artificial intelligence, DNA sequencing, precision oncology, and other technologies to improve treatment and diagnosis. The Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution India, a collaboration with the World Economic Forum, hopes to accelerate 18 interventions against cancer. According to the World Health Organization, cancer kills about 10 million people each year and is one of the leading global causes of death.

Breast, lung, and colon cancer are among the most common. Cancer mortality rates were decreasing before the pandemic. But COVID-19 has caused a significant setback in diagnosis and treatment.

However, there is some good news. Advances in medicine are speeding up the battle against cancer. Here are eight recent developments.

The seven-minute cancer cure The English National Health Service (NHS) will be the first in the world to use an injection for cancer treatment that takes only seven minutes to administer, instead of the current hour-long intravenous infusion. This will not only speed up the treatment process for patients but also free up time for medical professionals. The drug, Atezolizumab or Tecentriq, treats tumors including those of the lung and breast, and most of the 3,600 NHS patients in England who currently receive it intravenously are expected to switch to the vaccine.

Precision oncology Precision oncology is “the best new weapon to defeat cancer,” says Genetron Health CEO Sizhen Wang in a blog for the World Economic Forum. This involves studying the genetic composition and molecular characteristics of tumors in individual patients. Precision oncology identifies changes in cells that could cause cancer growth and spread. Personalized treatments can then be developed. Since precision oncology treatments are targeted, unlike general treatments like chemotherapy, this can mean less damage to healthy cells and therefore fewer side effects.

Artificial intelligence fights cancer In India, World Economic Forum partners are using emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to transform cancer care. For example, AI-based risk profiling can help detect common cancers like breast cancer, leading to early diagnosis. AI technology can also be used to analyze X-rays to identify tumors in places where imaging experts may not be available. These are two of the 18 cancer interventions that the Indian Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, in collaboration with the Forum, hopes to accelerate.

Improved prediction capabilities Lung cancer kills more people each year in the United States than the three deadliest cancers combined. It is notoriously difficult to detect the early stages of the disease with just X-rays and scans. However, MIT scientists have developed an AI-based machine learning model to predict a person’s likelihood of developing lung cancer up to six years in advance through low-dose CT scans. According to a recent study, trained using complex imaging data, “Sybil” can predict the risk of lung cancer both in the short and long term. “We found that while we humans couldn’t see where the cancer was, the model could still have some predictive power on which lung would eventually develop cancer,” said co-author Jeremy Wohlwend.

Clues in cancer DNA At Cambridge University Hospitals in England, the DNA of tumors from 12,000 patients is revealing new clues about the causes of cancer, scientists say. By analyzing genomic data, oncologists are identifying various mutations that have contributed to each person’s cancer. For example, exposure to smoking or UV rays or internal malfunctions in cells. They are like “fingerprints at the crime scene,” scientists say – and more are being found. “We have discovered 58 new mutational signatures and expanded our knowledge of cancer,” says study author Dr. Andrea Degasperi of the Department of Oncology at Cambridge.

Liquid and synthetic biopsies Biopsies are the primary method by which doctors diagnose cancer, but the process is invasive and involves removing a section of tissue from the body, sometimes surgically, so it can be examined in a lab. Liquid biopsies are a simpler and less invasive solution where blood samples can be tested for signs of cancer. Synthetic biopsies are another innovation that can compel tumor cells to reveal themselves in the early stages of the disease.

CAR-T cell therapy A treatment that enables immune cells to hunt down and kill cancer cells has recently been declared a success for leukemia patients. The treatment, called CAR-T cell therapy, involves the removal and genetic alteration of immune cells, called T cells, from cancer patients. The altered cells then produce proteins called chimeric antigen receptors (CARs). These recognize and can destroy cancer cells. In the journal Nature, scientists at the University of Pennsylvania announced that two of the first people treated with CAR-T cell therapy were still in remission after 12 years.

Fighting pancreatic cancer Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest cancers. It is rarely diagnosed before it begins to spread and has a less than 5% five-year survival rate. At the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine, scientists have developed a test that identified 95% of early-stage pancreatic tumors in a study. The research, published in Nature Communications Medicine, explains how biomarkers in extracellular vesicles—particles that regulate cell communication—have been used to detect pancreatic, ovarian, and bladder cancer at stages I and II.”

Di Remo12

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