BC Cancer Foundation - Fall 2016 - (Page 11)

Mapping the Spread of the Deadliest Ovarian Cancer Researchers use software to analyze cancer cells and understand migration patterns, informing future care "The Single Cell Genotyper software led us to define cell migration maps for the first time in ovarian cancer, including what cell types are present, where they are found in the abdominal cavity, and their migration patterns." Dr. Andrew Roth works in Dr. Shah's lab and developed the software that provides unprecedented digital resolution to identify the number of different cancer cells in a tumour, and to track how they migrate. Drs. Sohrab Shah and Andrew Roth teamed up to map the spread of the most deadly type of ovarian cancer; this method may improve future care. D r. Sohrab Shah's bioinformatics lab at the BC Cancer Agency is attracting top talent from around the world, drawn by the lab's innovative approach to cancer research. The researchers are developing novel software tools that can distill vital biological information on cancer cells and their distinct behaviors, unveiling a level of single-cell detail that wasn't possible before. Dr. Shah's team recently became the first to map the spread of the deadliest ovarian cancer, high grade serous, which makes up 70 per cent of the ovarian cancer diagnoses faced by more than 300 B.C. women each year. The team was able to map the migration of each cancer cell type found within tumour samples. This method provides a highly detailed, informed map of a person's cancer, which they hope can be used to develop predictive tools that will guide care. The more doctors know about a patient's cancer cells, the better they can plan treatment. "Cancer science is now a quantitative, digital science," Dr. Shah says of these technological advances. The study reveals that many cancer cell types make up a patient's tumour. This could explain why some cells are susceptible to treatment and others are resistant, leading to relapse. The next steps include closer looks at which cells in ovarian and breast cancer are resistant to treatment, using the software. The team is pioneering the field of computational cancer biology and is an inspiration to donors and the women facing a grim cancer diagnosis. Their breakthrough is a powerful example of philanthropy accelerating science. BE PART OF THE PROGRESS Learn more about Dr. Shah's pioneering work and how you can support his next big breakthrough. Contact Jan New today at jan.new@bccancer.bc.ca. W W W.BCCANCERFOUNDATION.COM 11 http://WWW.BCCANCERFOUNDATION.COM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of BC Cancer Foundation - Fall 2016

BC Cancer Foundation - Fall 2016
Opening Thoughts
Healthy Insights
Why I Give
Researcher Profi le
Bringing Cancer Care Closer to Home
Mapping the Spread of the Deadliest
A Better Biopsy
The Cancer’s DNA Matters
Legacy Giving
Regional Roundup

BC Cancer Foundation - Fall 2016