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Technical Capabilities


The members of CTA engage researchers who are world leaders in the area of cancer research and are involved in cutting edge research to better understand the disease. Key areas of focus and expertise arising from preclinical and clinical programs include:

      - Signal Transduction (STAT inhibitors)

      - Kinase/phosphatase regulators (Aurora, CDK)

      - Angiogenesis modifiers (VGEF, FGF)

      - Apoptosis

      - Cell Growth factors (IGF)

      - Tumour Biology and Immunotherapy

Accompanying the research expertise are analytical platforms deployed at the sites and shared by the sites. These include:

  • Positron Emission Tomography (PET/CT)

In addition to standard PET and CT scans, we also have 15O-water PET scan capability, which provides a unique ability to quantitate blood flow in tissue and tumours. PET/CT technology is currently being applied in trials across our imaging sites and to leverage the technology for combined evaluation of conventional (e.g. RECIST) and metabolic response in the secure knowledge that the same lesions are being evaluated by each modality. In an age of increasing interest in more robust methods for drug evaluation, development and validation, PET is ideal as a surrogate of survival in patients. Cohort enrichment by exclusion of occult metastatic disease or identification of specific targets is another advantage of PET.Conventionally, Phase 1 trials look only at toxicity. By introducing molecular imaging (scanning and microscopy collectively), the link between the drug level and a biological response can be identified earlier. If, for instance, a maximum biological response is obtained at a low dose level well before toxicity, the therapeutic index of the compound will be higher and the capacity to advance it into further clinical studies boosted. Radioisotopes (such as 11C compounds) are used for labelling metabolic compounds and fluorinated tracers, namely FDG (a glucose analogue). However, other tracers are also produced. They include: FLT for studies of cell proliferation; FET to monitor amino acid metabolism; FAZA for hypoxia imaging; and FMSIO.

  • Electron microscopy/including confocal

 

  • MRI
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