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Metabolic shift may offer early cancer clue
Date:7/5/2011

apart before there is any discernible regression," Goga said. "It suggests metabolic changes precede tumor formation and regression."

The findings could lead to new ways to diagnose liver cancer in its early stages. Better therapies and new imaging methods to monitor their effectiveness are also sorely needed in liver cancer. That's because the disease most often develops in patients with cirrhosis and the fibrous connective tissue typically found in their livers can prevent tumors from visibly shrinking even as they die. Hyperpolarized 13C-pyruvate MRSI may offer a way to assess drugs' effectiveness in such cases by visualizing changes in tumor metabolism.

"What excites us is that this is a new insight into tumor biology in a way that was not possible before," Goga says. "It also has real potential for application in patients."

In fact, the imaging technology they used is already being tested in an early clinical trial for use in patients with prostate cancer, another condition that can't be assessed well by current imaging methods.


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Contact: Elisabeth Lyons
elyons@cell.com
617-386-2121
Cell Press
Source:Eurekalert

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