7 Typical Lab Tests for Metastatic CRC Patients

Posted by Luke Doiron on Nov 24, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is deemed to be metastatic when it has spread to one or more sites outside of the colon area, such as the liver, lungs, bones, or lymph nodes. CRC is staged as a way to define the degree of spread; stage IV is defined as advanced CRC where the cancer has metastasized to one (stage IVa) or multiple (stage IVb) distant organs.

Even patients with metastatic CRC may have minimal to no symptoms before diagnosis, and physicians utilize lab tests as well as tissue biopsies and histological examination to help diagnose and stage CRC; once metastatic CRC is confirmed, more specialized lab tests help clinicians define the most appropriate treatment and management programs and assess prognosis for those with advanced colorectal cancer.

Read More

How Does Histologic Subtype Influence Metastatic Patterns in Colorectal Cancer?

Posted by Luke Doiron on Nov 10, 2015 8:00:00 AM

The most common form of colorectal cancer (CRC) is classified as an adenocarcinoma (AC), and over the years most treatment regimens have been based on its typical metastatic pattern and response to therapy. However, researchers now understand that there are a variety of histologic subtypes found in CRC, and importantly, have observed significant differences in their metastatic patterns and response to treatment. Here is a review of five histologic subtypes:

Read More

Genomic Research Studies on Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Posted by Luke Doiron on Nov 4, 2015 1:17:28 PM

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most challenging forms of cancer to successfully treat, mainly because of the high heterogeneity of CRC tumors. Yet, finding effective therapies is essential because CRC is the second leading cause of death worldwide in the western world, with 1.2 million cases and 600,000 deaths in 2008.

Because CRC is caused by accumulating multiple genetic and epigenetic aberrations, there is a great deal of research going on to better understand how CRC tumor genetic differences are associated with differing clinical outcomes. In addition, a variety of studies seek to analyze the DNA copy number aberrations in primary tumors and in CRC patients who develop metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC). The genomic landscape of mCRC is complex and challenging, but is incredibly important to understand so that biomarkers that accurately predict individualized mCRC treatment response can be found.

Read More

Matched Diseased and Normal Samples: A Case Study

Posted by Rebecca Parker on Oct 20, 2015 10:06:00 AM


Read More

4 More Summaries from the AACR Molecular Cancer Research RAS Collection

Posted by Luke Doiron on Oct 13, 2015 9:00:00 AM

Here we summarize the remaining four articles from the recently published RAS research collection of Molecular Cancer Research, a publication of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Colorectal Carcinogenesis: Connecting K-RAS-Induced Transformation and CREB Activity In Vitro and In Vivo

CREB (cAMP Response Element Binding) is a key transcription factor associated with the control of gene expressions involved in cell proliferation, cell cycle, apoptosis and tumor development. In this study, authors sought to elucidate the linkage between the K-Ras mutation and CREB, as a possible therapeutic target. Results point to enhanced CREB activity in K-Ras murine fibroblasts as well as K-Ras-mutated human tumor cells. Because K-Ras genes are commonly mutated in histologically-distinct tumors, and such cancers are frequently resistant to treatment and have a poor patient outcome, this study may offer a promising avenue for further treatment evaluation, especially for Ras-induced tumors.

Read More

Metastatic Colorectal Cancer: Causes and Symptoms

Posted by Luke Doiron on Oct 6, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) occurs when the cancer that started in the colon area spreads to a different organ or location in the body. This is different from what is termed recurrent CRC, which is cancer that reappears at its original site within the colon or rectum, post-treatment.

Once diagnosed, CRC is classified in five different stages:

Stage 0: Also known as carcinoma in situ, CRC is confined to the innermost lining (mucosa) of the colon or rectum.

Stage I: The cancer has spread to the layer of tissue underneath the mucosa, i.e. the submucosa, and may have spread to the colon wall muscle layer.

Read More

5 Key Summaries from the AACR Molecular Cancer Research RAS Collection

Posted by Luke Doiron on Oct 6, 2015 8:00:00 AM

Here we summarize five recently published articles from Molecular Cancer Research, a publication of the American Association for Cancer Research, focusing on its RAS research collection.

Biochemical and Structural Analysis of Common Cancer-Associated KRAS Mutations

KRAS mutations, the most common genetic abnormalities found to date in cancer, vary depending upon the type of cancer and the specific area of mutation. This in turn impacts therapeutic efficacy. In this study, authors analyzed the unique biochemical properties of different KRAS mutations, and postulate that such biochemical profiling linked to classification of KRAS-driven cancers may enhance the selection of appropriate therapies.

Read More

The Benefits of Using Patient Derived CRC Primary Cultures for Research

Posted by Luke Doiron on Sep 29, 2015 9:00:00 AM


It can cost up to $4 billion and take, on average, 12 years to bring a new drug to market. One of the biggest challenges for R&D is improving the early clinical discovery steps, so that better potential candidate molecules make it into human clinical trials. It’s increasingly recognized that one of the main reasons for the large number of drug failures is the use of models that are not predictive or are irrelevant to understanding critical disease mechanisms.

Read More
Subscribe to educational articlew