October 15, 1999
Whitehead Institute For Biomedical Research
In a new study reported in Friday's Science, a team of Whitehead-led researchers reports the first systematic and objective approach for identifying and classifying tumor types. This approach exploits the hot new technology of DNA microarrays--DNA chips that can analyze the activity of thousands of genes at a time--and could be used in the future to accurately diagnose cancer subtypes and also to predict clinical outcomes.
One of the biggest challenges in cancer treatment is choosing the right regimen for a given patient. Treatment strategies work differently for different tumors. In choosing effective treatments with minimal side effects, oncologists rely heavily on biopsy reports that diagnose the tumor type involved. However, even today, cancer diagnosis is done the old-fashioned way: by observing morphological changes in biopsies under the microscope. The method suffers from serious limitations because cancer cells that look similar under the microscope can follow different clinical courses and respond differently to therapy.
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Whitehead Institute For Biomedical Research. "New DNA Chip Method Could Improve Cancer Diagnosis." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 October 1999. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/10/991015075830.htm>.
Whitehead Institute For Biomedical Research. (1999, October 15). New DNA Chip Method Could Improve Cancer Diagnosis. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 12, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/10/991015075830.htm
Whitehead Institute For Biomedical Research. "New DNA Chip Method Could Improve Cancer Diagnosis." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/1999/10/991015075830.htm (accessed March 12, 2014).