- Dr. Pravin D. Potdar
- Faculty & Professor of Genetics and Stem Cell Biology, Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam Education & Research Centre, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Special Issue Introduction
The idea of the Human Genome Project (HGP) for understanding the molecular mechanism of cancer was first published by Professor Renato Dulbecco, a Noble Laureate in 1984. The sequencing of the Human Genome Project was initiated in 1988 and was completed by Dr. Francis Collins, Director, National Institute of Health (NIH), USA. Dr. Collins has declared the completion of this project by the publication of this data in April 2003. After completion of the Human Genome Project, molecular profiling of cancer has played a great role in the diagnosis and therapies of cancer. Several scientists started correlating molecular profiling of individual cancer patients to their therapeutic monitoring using the latest innovative technologies such as Polymerase Chain Reaction, Real-time PCR, Automated DNA sequencing, Next Generation Sequencing, Microarray analysis and latest one is the CRISPR technology. This branch of Medicine is then called as a Precise or Personalized Medicine (PM). Personalized Medicine is a great concept that provides effective therapeutic strategies based on individual cancer patient’s genomic, epigenomic or proteomic molecular profiling. It is a novel strategy which gives hopes to get precise & cost-effective diagnosis and therapies for the cure of cancer.
Personalized cancer medicine is mainly based on molecular profiling of cancer cells. The better understanding of molecular mechanisms underlying cancer development and progression has enabled scientists to develop new therapeutic drugs that can intervene in the process of cancer development and stop the growth of cancer cells without harming normal cells. Targeted cancer therapies are emerged from the results of these studies permitted an increase in treatment effectiveness in oncological patients. Nowadays, these therapeutic procedures are becoming standard management for an increasing number of cancer cases all over the world. Alterations in expression of HER2 amplification in breast cancer, EGFR mutations in non-small cell lung carcinoma, KRAS and BRAF mutations in colorectal cancer or BCR-Abl fusion in Chronic Myelogenous Leukaemia are routinely examined. Several cancer patients are successfully treated with various Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors and small molecules giving rise to precise therapy to cure these cancers without any side effects or drug resistance. Immense progress in our understanding of cancer genetics is made possible through the development of innovative molecular technology. Availability of large scale molecular approaches like Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS) and array techniques for chromosomal instability, gene expression or methylation pattern and development of various bioinformatic tools allowed us to identify vast numbers of different genetic alterations in each malignancy. In addition, work on non-invasive liquid biopsies (Circulating Tumor Cells, ctDNA, and miRNA) and immunotherapy (Checkpoint inhibitors and CAR-T cell therapy) of cancer are the latest innovative treatment for cancer therapies. These analyses are allowed in turn of establishing key genetic features to employ as biomarkers for optimization of cancer patient’s treatment in the near future. Now the strategy of present cancer treatment is to provide ‘the right drug, with the right dose at the right time to the right patient. Thus the successful application of Personalized Medicine mainly depends on the availability of development of innovative diagnostic technologies which allow for the precise selection of therapeutic drugs to improve patient outcomes. Personalized Medicine is not only establishing novel therapy for patients, but it stratifies individuals into subpopulations that vary in their response to a therapeutic agent for their specific type of cancer. Presently Personalized Medicine is the most important field in cancer medicine where clinicians can select a treatment based on a patient’s molecular profile which tends to reduce harmful side effects but gives more successful treatment to cure cancer. It is also very much cost-effective compared with a ‘trial-and-error’ approach presently used for the treatment of various cancers. So overall, it shows that Personalised Medicine is a great field to work for the betterment of diagnosis and therapy to cure cancer. This special issue will be covering all these aspects of personalized medicine which will be useful as a guide to all research students, cancer scientists, and oncologists for their future work in this area.
KeywordsPersonalised Medicine, Targeted therapy, Molecular profiling, Cancer, Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors, CheckPoints inhibitors, Liquid Biopsies, CAR- T cells, NGS
Submission Deadline31 Dec 2020