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Mayo, NorthShore partner on new prostate cancer therapy

<p>Dr. Daniel Shevrin, a hematologist/oncologist at NorthShore University HealthSystem, is participating in a new cancer treatment at Mayo Clinic. Courtesy NorthShore University HealthSystem</p>

Dr. Daniel Shevrin, a hematologist/oncologist at NorthShore University HealthSystem, is participating in a new cancer treatment at Mayo Clinic. Courtesy NorthShore University HealthSystem

NorthShore University HealthSystem is collaborating with Mayo Clinic on a new therapy to treat men for advanced prostate cancer.

Developed at Mayo, the new therapy attempts to match new drugs with gene DNA of a patient’s tumor.

Doctors use exome sequencing, which is the coding portions of genes that are translated into important proteins, to identify molecular traits within prostate cancers.

The information can potentially identify an optimal drug for the individual patient, said Dr. Manish Kohli, a Mayo Clinic oncologist.

Kohli also is lead investigator of the therapeutic study, known as Prostate Cancer Medically Optimized Genome-Enhanced Therapy, or PROMOTE.

“We can identify people who deserve this treatment based on their tumor profiles, as well as identify new targets that are drugable,” he said.

In the research, a patient’s tumor tissue is grown in lab mice that can be tested for drug therapies.

NorthShore University HealthSystem in the Chicago area has agreed to join the program by sending eligible men to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

At the clinic, they undergo needle biopsies used in tumor sequencing to match concentrated, targeted or drugs with the individual patient.

Dr. Daniel Shevrin, a hematologist/oncologist at NorthShore, specializes in complex cancer cases.

NorthShore HealthSystem has four facilities, which are Evanston Hospital, Glenbrook Hospital, Highland Park Hospital and Skokie Hospital opening in 2009.

“I have a large practice of men with advanced prostrate cancer here. We’re very excited about this new treatment and how genes can help us find target drugs,” said Shevrin, of Glencoe.

“I think a lot of these men are interested in receiving personalized medicine. We have an opportunity now in making the trip to Rochester and participate in PROMOTE.”

NorthShore is the only hospital member of the Mayo Clinic Care Network.

For biopsies, NorthShore patients will spend one to two days at Mayo, and return for another appointment three months apart.

Shevrin explained the treatment was for men whose prostate cancers had spread to bones, livers and or lymph nodes, for example.

“They have advanced cancer. Surgery, chemotherapy and radiation have not worked,” he said.

Prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed organ malignancy in the United States, with more than 238,000 new diagnoses annually and an estimated 29,720 deaths.

It is the second leading cause of cancer deaths among American men, according to the Surveillance Epidemiology and End Results of the National Cancer Institute.

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