Navigation Links
Finding cancer 'cold spots' can help minimize radiotherapy side-effects

Fine-tuning radiotherapy to take into account which parts of a patient's tumor are growing fastest could improve control of cancer while subjecting patients to lower doses of radiation, Dutch researchers reported today at the 2nd European Lung Cancer Conference.

"The only problem in radiotherapy is minimizing the side-effects," says lead researcher Dr Christian Siedschlag from the Dutch Cancer Institute. "If one could hit the tumor with arbitrarily high doses without having to worry about complications, all tumor cells could be killed with 100 percent certainty. Unfortunately this is not the case, therefore one must take every chance to administer no more dose than is absolutely necessary."

With this in mind, the Dutch researchers investigated whether some areas in a tumor might not need to be irradiated, thereby decreasing the overall dose and minimizing damage while achieving the same therapeutic effect.

The tool they used to do this is a form of positron emission tomography scanning called FDG PET. PET scans measure the glucose metabolism of a tumor by injecting 'radioactive sugar' and measuring where the radioactivity (and hence the sugar) is absorbed in the body.

Tumors have an increased metabolism compared to normal tissue, which makes them show up well on PET scans. In most cases, lung tumors are visible on PET scans as a bright sphere, with the highest intensity in the middle.

"Sometimes, though, the shape of the tumor on a PET scan is more irregular, for instance donut-shaped with a 'cold spot' in the middle or boomerang-shaped with a 'cold spot' (or 'cold area') on one side," Dr Siedschlag explains. "The underlying question that motivated this study was: can we give less radiation dose to these cold spots? If it turned out that these cold areas show less signal on a PET scan because there are less active tumor cells, then the answer would be yes. However, it could also have been that the radioactive sugar doesn't reach the cold spots for other reasons."

At the ELCC meeting, the group reports preliminary results showing that indeed in most cases the cold spots consist of dead tumor cells. In 7 out of 61 patients they saw cold spots on PET scans. Surgical examination showed that in five cases, these spots were in fact dead cells.

"By decreasing the doses given to the cold spots, one might be able to increase the dose given to the rest of the tumor, while keeping the normal tissue dose constant. Or one could keep the dose given to the rest of the tumor constant, which would lead to less side-effects with an identical therapeutic result."


Contact: Vanessa Pavinato
European Society for Medical Oncology

Related medicine news :

1. New Finding Could Mark Shift in Alzheimers Research
2. Scientists Report Key Finding in Breast Cancer Research
3. Research findings underscore needed action to safeguard lungs of young cancer survivors
4. Finding Good Migraine Care a Headache for the Uninsured
5. ACS Webinar features tips for finding and building a career in public policy and chemical industry
6. Cosmetic and Plastic Surgery Web Site Announces Improvements to the Patient Process of Finding Cosmetic Doctors in Their Area
7. Cedars-Sinai Heart Institute physicians present findings at ACC scientific meeting
8. Research findings expected to ease treatment of low neutrophil counts in cancer patients
9. Aims to Reduce Obesity Levels Through Sports Participation by Finding Sports Partners/Players/Teams
10. UMass Lowell researchers findings suggest new ways to diagnose and treat Alzheimers
11. VARI findings may help patients with deadly kidney cancer
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... October 13, 2015 , ... Dr. Poneh Ghasri, dentist in West Hollywood ... 2015. The research, which was conducted at the Dental Institute at King's College London ... between stress during pregnancy and future dental health in the child. For years, researchers ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... October 13, 2015 , ... Protein is essential to good health. ... bone, and blood. But how much protein does the average man need in order ... according to the October 2015 issue of Harvard Men's Health Watch . Most ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... Waycross, GA (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2015 ... ... charitable nonprofit promoting the establishment of telemedicine programs in communities throughout Georgia, along ... (FTP) announce the collective schedule for their regional telehealth summits for Fall 2015. ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... 13, 2015 , ... According to an ESPN report published on ... teammate accidentally elbowed him in the left eye during the first day of practice ... of a series of setbacks, including a knee injury that has interfered with his ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... ... October 13, 2015 , ... In an ongoing effort ... , a Southlake, Texas, child development and pediatric therapy center, is working with ... families about their options for receiving this kind of care for affected children. ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:10/13/2015)... Fla. , Oct. 13, 2015   Vigilant ... of solutions that aid in the early detection and ... has awarded Vigilant,s founder and CEO, Matthew H.J. ... Year Award, which recognizes an entrepreneur who has made ... life sciences industry in the leadership of ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... WuXi PharmaTech (Cayman) Inc. (NYSE:  WX), a ... serving the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device industries, ... version of OncoWuXi, the first App in the ... and data on the go.  The OncoWuXi App ... to identify relevant tumor models for use in ...
(Date:10/13/2015)... 13, 2015   Happy Vitals ®, ... home testing kit for breast milk.  The ... an unparalleled, detailed assessment of the nutrition ... carbs and key vitamins—all charted over time ... health tracking.  In addition, Happy Vitals also offers ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: