Research from Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey examining difficult to treat cancer tumors through genomic profiling shows that tumors with alterations in a signaling pathway responsible for cell regulation may respond to targeted therapy regardless of where the tumor originated in the body. The findings will be presented as part of a poster presentation by members of the Rutgers Cancer Institute Precision Medicine Program at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) being held in New Orleans next month.
Genomic alterations affecting the P13K/AKT/mTOR pathway are commonly seen among various cancer types (Kandoth, 2013). Through this research, Rutgers Cancer Institute investigators wanted to determine how comprehensive genomic profiling could be used in clinical care to identify alterations affecting this pathway. “We are re-defining cancer classification,” notes Rutgers Cancer Institute Precision Medicine Director Lorna Rodriguez, MD, PhD, who is the senior investigator of the work. “Instead of focusing on where the cancer first originated, we now have an ability to drill down and further examine and identify potentially actionable genomic features within the tumor. This not only enables clinicians to rapidly employ tailored treatment strategies, but also provides for the development of future therapies in the form of new clinical trials.”