The new discovery scientists from the University of Melbourne and the Medical Research Institute Walter and Eliza Hall may help to identify patients with the most aggressive type of lung cancer that is responsive to immunotherapy, which is currently used to treat other cancers.
The researchers found a unique molecular signature in the blood, which in the future may be used for the detection of aggressive cancers of the lung by means of a simple blood test.
The results of the work of scientists published in the «Cell Metabolism» magazine.
The study focused on the role of the two cell signaling pathways - KEAP1 / NRF2 and PI3K - that are involved in cancer development of human lung adenocarcinomas.
"More than one in five lung adenocarcinomas have a change in the way KEAP1 / NRF2, which means that this signaling pathway - the main driver of cancer - the researchers reported. - These cancers are aggressive, resistant to standard therapy, and have a poor prognosis. It is therefore necessary to develop new, more effective treatments. "
Adenocarcinoma is about 40% of lung cancer cases and is often associated with smoking history, but it is most often diagnosed with lung cancer in non-smokers. This tumor occurs in young men and women are more likely than other types of lung cancer.
Scientists said that the continuous alarm, caused by mutations in the ways KEAP1 / NRF2 and of PI3K, caused the development of adenocarcinoma of the lung.
"We are the first to show that these changes cause adenocarcinoma of the lung. Due to the information received, we will be able to further explore how to target these pathways can lead to treatment of disease "- the researchers reported.
Unique molecular signatures found in the blood, can be a tool for the identification of patients who will respond to immunotherapy. Perhaps they can be used as a simple, non-invasive blood test for the early detection of these types of cancer.