Study Reveals Crucial Genes for the Potential Treatment of Ovarian Cancer

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A new study provides more insight into how women diagnosed with advanced-stage ovarian cancer or HGSOC (high-grade serious ovarian cancer) respond better to treatment than others. A research team has proven that HGSOC has lymphoid tissue called tertiary lymphoid structures (TLS). TLS grants women a higher chance of recovery. Furthermore, the researchers have uncovered the genes required for the development and function of TLS.

The human body relies on its lymphatic system to combat infection by producing immune cells like T cells. TLS is similar to lymphatic tissues and can be identified in various tumors.

How researchers conducted the study

From a sample of 242 individuals diagnosed with HGSOC, the researchers concluded that patients with TLS had a significant outcome. TLS was identified on the tumors as detailed in the study. Doctor Haonan Lu, the research team leader, says individuals think cancer cell behavior is entirely harmful, which is far from true in this case. He explains how tumors disrupt the development of lymph tissue in the body only for it to trigger the T cells. The T cells end up attacking the cancer.

The researchers narrowed down to specific genetic mutations responsible for the formation of TLS. They discovered that copy mutations in gene CXCL 10 and gene IL15 hindered lymphoid tissue formation. Moreover, the team identified other genes that make TLS active or inactive after formation.  Doctor Lu explains the importance of pinpointing these specific genes as they are crucial in treating ovarian cancer.

Bowen researchers used CT scans and artificial intelligence for the study

The team of researchers has come up with a technique for recognizing patients with more TLS. This is done by CT scans and with the use of Artificial Intelligence. It creates an alternative treatment for other patients after being identified. The team’s method involved the creation of an AI algorithm that could trace TLS.

Professor Aboagye says oncologists will be able to note the levels of TLS in patients and conduct treatment accordingly. The team secured a grant enabling them to examine further specific genetic mutations. They hope the study results will help more women with the disease.

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