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Updated time: 18 May 2021
Definition: Pancreatic cancer is one of the most fatal malignancies and the seventh leading cause of cancer-related deaths related to late diagnosis, poor survival rates, and high incidence of metastasis.
Updated time: 31 Aug 2021
Definition: Gynaecological cancers can be primary neoplasms, originating either from the reproductive tract or the products of conception, or secondary neoplasms, representative of metastatic disease. For some of these cancers, the exact causes are unknown; however, it is recognised that the precise aetiopathogeneses for most are multifactorial and include exogenous (such as diet) and endogenous factors (such as genetic predisposition), which mutually interact in a complex manner. One factor that has been recognised to be involved in the pathogenesis and progression of gynaecological cancers is the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS consists of endocannabinoids (bioactive lipids), their receptors, and metabolic enzymes responsible for their synthesis and degradation.
Updated time: 18 May 2021
Definition: 14-3-3σ is an acidic homodimer protein with more than one hundred different protein partners associated with oncogenic signaling and cell cycle regulation.
Updated time: 23 Jun 2021
Definition: 177Lu-PSMA (prostate specific membrane antigen) therapy is used for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC). Although there are some different approaches regarding the use of 177Lu-PSMA therapy in different countries, this type of therapy is generally safe, with a low toxicity profile. From the oncological point of view, a PSA (prostate specific antigen) decline of ≥50% was seen in 10.6–69% of patients with mCRPC; whereas progression-free survival (PFS) was reported to be 3–13.7 months in different studies. Consequently, 177Lu-PSMA therapy is a promising treatment in patients with mCRPC, with good clinical efficacy, even in heavily pretreated patients with multiple lines of systemic therapy. Currently, there are ongoing clinical trials in the United States, including a phase III multicenter FDA registration trial.
Updated time: 23 Jun 2021
Definition: PET (positron emission tomography) is a noninvasive functional imaging technique based on the detection of photons resulting from the annihilation of positrons emitted by a radioactive substance known as radiotracer or radiopharmaceutical. PET equipments usually incorporate a computed tomography scanner (PET/CT) in order to obtain hybrid functional-anatomical images. Different radiotracers are used to study different physiologic processes, such as blood flow, bone turnover or expression of certain cell receptors. The most common radiotracer used in clinical practice is 2-deoxy-2-[18F]fluoro-d-glucose (2-[18F]FDG), a glucose analogue binded to a radioactive isotope of fluor that informs about glucose metabolism in the body. As cancer cells have high energy requirements (and, therefore, high glucose consumption), this radiotracer is mostly used to evaluate oncologic processes (disease extension, response to treatment, etc.). However, some types of cancer have low 2-[18F]FDG uptake (e.g., well-differentiated or slow-growing neoplasms), and others can have a variable uptake due to the action of certain enzymes in the metabolic route of glucose (e.g., hepatocellular carcinoma).
Updated time: 23 Jun 2021
Abstract: The [177Lu]Lu-PSMA radioligand therapy (PSMA-RLT) has emerged as a successful treatment option in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC).
Updated time: 13 Apr 2021
Definition: 3D models of cancer primarily refer to patient-derived xenografts, spheroids, and organoids and have been established for a variety of cancer types, including lung cancer. 3D lung cancer models have been demonstrated to more accurately model patient cancers and have the potential to advance basic, translational, and clinical studies.
Updated time: 24 Jun 2021
Definition: The current statistics on cancer show that 90% of all human cancers originate from epithelial cells. Breast and prostate cancer are examples of common tumors of epithelial origin that would benefit from improved drug treatment strategies. About 90% of preclinically approved drugs fail in clinical trials, partially due to the use of too simplified in vitro models and a lack of mimicking the tumor microenvironment in drug efficacy testing. This entry focuses on the epithelial cancers, followed by experimental models designed to recapitulate the epithelial tumor structure and microenvironment. A specific focus is to put on novel technologies for cell culture of spheroids, organoids, and 3D-printed tissue-like models, utilizing biomaterials of natural or synthetic origins, and how the models could be utilized for nanotechnology-based drug delivery in the future.
Updated time: 22 Mar 2021
Definition: Pancreatic cancer is an extremely lethal malignancy with a survival rate lower than any other cancer type. For decades, two-dimensional (2D) cultures have been the cornerstone for studying cancer cell biology and drug testing, due to their simplicity and cost. However, their inability to reconstitute the tumor architecture, the absence of nutrient and oxygen supply gradients, as well as the lack of appropriate mechano-forces that mimic the extracellular microenvironment, make them an inadequate model to accurately reproduce tissue level-specific characteristics. Bioengineering systems, such as three-dimensional (3D) patient-specific models, are progressively emerging as systems better able to mimic the biology of pancreatic tumors and to test new anticancer therapies, as they more efficiently recapitulate the complex tumor microenvironment characteristic of pancreatic tumors.
Updated time: 14 Apr 2021
Definition: 5-aminolevulinic acid (5-ALA) is a porphyrin precursor in the heme synthesis pathway. When supplied exogenously, certain cancers consume 5-ALA and convert it to the fluorogenic metabolite protoporphyrin IX (PpIX), causing tumor-specific tissue fluorescence. Preoperative administration of 5-ALA is used to aid neurosurgical resection of high-grade gliomas such as glioblastoma, allowing for increased extent of resection and progression free survival for these patients. Targeting the heme synthesis pathway and understanding its dysregulation in malignant tissues could aid the development of adjunct therapies to increase intraoperative fluorescence after 5-ALA treatment