Gene mutations in tumors impact radiation sensitivity: Some tumors are more resistant to radiation; others are more sensitive2022-10-26
A new Northwestern Medicine study identifies common and rare gene mutations that impact radiation resistance and sensitivity, an important step toward providing more individualized and effective radiotherapy for patients with cancer.
Radiotherapy continues to be delivered using generic schedules and doses, unlike newer targeted drug therapy that are guided by the genomics of an individual’s cancer.
“The lack of incorporation of genetic data into radiation treatment is a significant unmet clinical need,” said corresponding author Dr. Mohamed Abazeed, associate professor of Radiation Oncology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine and a Northwestern Medicine radiation oncologist.
“This information ultimately will allow us to better calibrate the dose of radiation for patients in the clinic,” Abazeed said. “We can give higher doses to more resistant tumors based on their genetic mutations and a lower dose to the more sensitive cancers, allowing us to both improve treatment efficacy and reduce toxicity. The findings hasten a new paradigm in the field of radiation therapy.”
The study was published recently in Clinical Cancer Research.
Studying tumors from 27 different types of cancer, investigators profiled 92 genes with 400 unique mutations and determined the impact of these genes on radiation response.
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