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Scientists take cancer research back to the basic molecular level

PHILADELPHIA Scientists and clinicians from around the world will gather in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, next week at the American Association for Cancer Research's third International Conference on Molecular Diagnostics in Therapeutic Development.

The conference is subtitled, "Fulfilling the Promise of Personalized Medicine," which reflects the potential of molecular diagnostics to provide new strategies for tailoring therapies to fit the needs of each cancer patient's unique biology.

Sessions will include discussions on the use of biomarkers in clinical practice and new drug development, advanced imaging technologies for diagnosis, and the application of proteomics in personalized medicine.

Novel findings to be reported at the conference include:

  • A new gene expression analysis that shows important differences in brain cancer.
  • A groundbreaking method of measuring changes in DNA .
  • A new biomarker that could more accurately determine the prognosis of patients with head and neck carcinoma.
  • A more complete and accurate test for blood disorders.

"As genetic, proteomic, imaging and other new technologies have become more sophisticated and our knowledge of tumor biology and signaling pathways advances, so too does our ability to molecularly characterize individual tumors and identify germ line and somatic determinants of patient prognosis and response," said conference chairperson Gordon B. Mills, M.D., Ph.D., chairman of the Department of Molecular Therapeutics at the University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.

"This new era of personalized medicine has brought with it great opportunities to enhance cancer drug development and improve patient care," said Mills. "However, in order to harness this potential and maximize these opportunities, it is essential that there be an ongoing exchange of new ideas and information."

In addition to the symposia and poster sessions, the conference will include two keynote lectures. The first will be from David Sidransky, M.D., director of head and neck cancer research at the Johns Hopkins Hospital, who will deliver, "Personalized Cancer Medicine in the Next Decade." The second will be from Joe W. Gray, Ph.D., director of the Division of Life Sciences at the Lawrence Berkley National Laboratory, who will speak on, "Models of Molecular Diversity to Facilitate Marker Guided Therapy."


Contact: Jeremy Moore
American Association for Cancer Research

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