We, at the Advanced Medical Research Foundation, are one part of this great effort. We are growing. Already we have behind us a list of achievements in which we take great pride, and we are currently engaged on many fronts where breakthroughs are very possible.
We specialize in research in human cancer stem cells. This is a rapidly changing field because until now it has been impossible to identify these special and unique cells that we believe may play the critical role in formation and growth of human cancers. These cancer stem cells look in structure and shape identical to other cancer cells but we are finding they have very separate and unique abilities to direct the growth of other cancer cells and hence may cause human cancers to become fatal. We are harvesting human breast cancer cells and culturing them in a special media to learn the signals that influence them and how control of these cancer stem cells may control or prevent a human cancer.
The ovary and the endometrium of the uterus are our focus on epithelial and stromal cell function that help us understand the formation of pelvic cancers. Through molecular biology, proteins from cancer cells have found that may become bio markers to discover the presence of these cancers. The presence of the cables protein may protect the ovary from development of cancer. In experimental models where the cables gene is not expressed there is spontaneous development of cancer.
Proteomics at Children's Hospital
Our colleagues have discovered patterns in over 33 matrix metallo proteases (MMP’s). The increase or decrease of these proteins in the urine of patients indicates the presence in the body of certain cancers. By the elevations of certain MMP’s we can discover the first presence of a particular cancer before it becomes fatal or follow the growth of a cancer. Work is being done to measure through these MMP’s when normal cells may transform to a malignant or if untreated, a fatal cancer.
Mind and Body
We have completed over four studies on the influence of the mind, stress, nutrition and exercise in the incidence of cancer, the quality of life and the immune response. This year we are studying specifically how it relates to prostrate cancer and ovarian cancer in larger groups of patients