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  • Research home > Beat Cancer Project search > Genetic polymorphisms to predict benefit from colorectal cancer therapies

    Genetic polymorphisms to predict benefit from colorectal cancer therapies

    Dr Amanda Townsend
    • Donor Funding: $75,000
    • Cancer Type: Bowel & colon
    • Cancer Stage: Treatment
    • Funded in: 2016
    • Dr Amanda Townsend
      The University of Adelaide

    Genome-wide association study of single nucleotide polymorphisms as predictive biomarkers for sensitivity to anti-EGFR antibody therapy for metastatic colorectal cancer with wild-type RAS


    Our research

    Advanced colorectal cancer can be treated by a number of different chemotherapies and by targeted treatment (EGFR-antagonists).  Inherited genetic differences result in subtle differences in the receptor and the signalling pathway that the treatment targets. This may result in differences in the way individuals respond to this treatment.  


    What we aim to achieve

    We aim to identify genetic differences that predict which patients will derive benefit from this treatment so that treatments can be targeted to the individual. This will also prevent patients receiving treatment that would be futile and result in unnecessary side effects and costs.


    What are the next steps and milestones for your research?

    We are currently identifying candidate variants for validation in further clinical trials.


    What motivates you to pursue cancer research?

    To improve cancer treatment and reduce the side effects of therapy with the aim of ultimately improving the benefits to patients and allowing them to live a better quality of life.


    My message to supporters:

    This research will help add to our knowledge about how to select patients for targeted treatment for cancer. By identifying patients who will not benefit from certain treatments, we can prevent them from receiving futile therapy that may result in side effects.  This funding has also allowed the development of interstate and international collaboration to continue working on similar projects to improve our understanding of how to treat cancer.

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