Precision medicine is currently emerging as a tool that seeks to make cancer treatment more effective, an issue that was highlighted during the 6th Annual Meeting of the Mexican College for Cancer Research (C-MIC).
Dr. Luis Alonso Herrera Montalvo, director of the National Institute of Genomic Medicine and founder of CMIC, explained that, although the idea of precision medicine is not new, advances are a great promise for the treatment of cancer. “This method allows specialists to select treatments that are more likely to help patients according to a genetic concept of their disease.”
He added that “currently, when a person is diagnosed with cancer, he receives the same treatment as other people who have the same type and stage of cancer. However, it has been proven that each individual responds differently. After decades of research, scientists understood that patients’ tumors have diverse genetic changes that must be treated in a unique way. ”
Cancer is one of the biggest public health problems in Mexico, at present, this disease is the third cause of death in the country (it causes 12% of all deaths) and it is estimated that about 191,000 new ones are registered every year Patients with this disease.
Most cases are directly related to unhealthy lifestyles, such as smoking, alcoholism and physical inactivity.
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The World Health Organization (WHO) expects that by 2030 a person will die from cancer every 2 seconds somewhere in the world. This, despite the fact that between 30 and 50 percent of cancers can be avoided by reducing risk factors and applying scientific-based preventive strategies.
Cancer can be caused by many factors, including exposure to substances that cause cancer, certain behaviors, age and inherited genetic mutations.
Precision medicine could help reverse the picture. The treatments are expected to be related to the genetic changes in each person’s cancer soon.
In this regard, Dr. Herrera commented that “scientists see a very near future in which genetic tests will help decide which treatments are more likely to respond to the patient’s tumor, which will help patients get rid of receive treatments that are not likely to help. ”
During the closing ceremony of the 6th Annual Meeting of the Mexican College for Cancer Research (C-MIC), the attending scientists agreed that research is essential to achieve better cancer management in Mexico and the world. If you are interested in being part of this community and following the discussion generated around the topic, sign up at www.c-mic.mx.