More good news on the cancer research front.  Here is the first part of an article I found this morning in the New York Times:

Study Divides Breast Cancer Into Four Distinct Types

By Gina Kolata – New York Times

September 24, 2012

Dr. Charles Perou, lead author of the study

In findings that are fundamentally reshaping the scientific understanding of breast cancer, researchers have identified four genetically distinct types of the cancer. And within those types, they found hallmark genetic changes that are driving many cancers.

These discoveries, published online on Sunday in the journal Nature, are expected to lead to new treatments with drugs already approved for cancers in other parts of the body and new ideas for more precise treatments aimed at genetic aberrations that now have no known treatment.

The study is the first comprehensive genetic analysis of breast cancer, which kills more than 35,000 women a year in the United States. The new paper, and several smaller recent studies, are electrifying the field.

“This is the road map for how we might cure breast cancer in the future,” said Dr. Matthew Ellis of Washington University, a researcher for the study.

Researchers and patient advocates caution that it will still take years to translate the new insights into transformative new treatments. Even within the four major types of breast cancer, individual tumors appear to be driven by their own sets of genetic changes. A wide variety of drugs will most likely need to be developed to tailor medicines to individual tumors…

There is a lot of great information here, so CLICK HERE to read the rest.

In the article, Brad Ozenberger of the National Institutes of Health was quoted as saying, “There has never been a breast cancer genomics project on this scale.” 

Understanding the basics is the first step to finding a cure.  But I have to ask, “What’s taking so long?”  It’s not like researchers are just learning that genetic research is important to solving the breast cancer riddle!

My feeling after reading this:  Disappointment!

Better late than never, I guess.  Feel good and keep smiling!  Pat

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