17 Mar Pancreatic Cancer: NYU Scientists Examine Microenvironment to Learn Effects of Chemotherapy
MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Aristotelis Tsirigos, Ph.D.
Professor of Medicine and Pathology
Co-director, Precision Medicine
Director, Applied Bioinformatics Laboratories New York University School of Medicine
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?
Response: Pancreatic cancer is one of the most lethal types of cancer with only 12% of patients surviving more than 5 years after diagnosis. One of the main reasons behind the dismal prognosis is the complexity of the tumor.
Pancreatic cancer cells are very heterogenous and interact with different types of non-malignant cells in what is known as the tumor microenvironment.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings?
Response: To better understand how these tumors evolve and how they may respond to therapy, we analyzed patient samples using advanced molecular technologies that can characterize one cell at a time. We found that chemotherapy can profoundly reshape tumor cells and alter the way they interact with the immune cells in the tumor microenvironment.
MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?
Response: Taking advantage of new technologies, scientists are now able to measure and characterize in detail how individual tumor cells respond to therapy. This gives us hope that we will be able to design better therapies, tailored to the detailed characteristics of each tumor.
MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a results of this study?
Response: Additional experiments are underway to validate the findings in more patients and to identify opportunities for novel therapeutic interventions.
Werba, G., Weissinger, D., Kawaler, E.A. et al. Single-cell RNA sequencing reveals the effects of chemotherapy on human pancreatic adenocarcinoma and its tumor microenvironment. Nat Commun 14, 797 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-023-36296-4
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