#LCSM Chat 11/29: What’s a cancer model, and why should I care?

Once your take cancer cells out of a living body, the cancer cells die, right?  So how researchers study cancer? One way researchers study cancer is by using “cancer models.”  Cancer models are clumps of living cancer cells that exist either in a lab dish (see image above), or in animal models such as mice. Sometimes these models also include other living cells from the host environment.  It’s not exactly the same as studying a living cancer in its human host, but it does allow researchers time to study the biology of a cancer… Read More

#LCSM Chat Topic 3/22: Slicing the Pie–How Can Lung Cancer Patient Groups, Clinicians, and Researchers Best Work Together?

Lung cancer management has shifted from a broadly defined process to one increasingly recognized as narrow subgroups that have distinct patterns of cancer biology and optimal treatments.  The first patient group to splinter into a separate branch of management was the approximately 10% of people with EGFR mutation-positive NSCLC, and the treatment options for them continue to become deeper and more complex as we gain more active agents and struggle with enviable problems like the best sequencing and protection of the brain against metastatic spread. Other “driver mutations” such as ALK and… Read More

#LCSM Chat Topic 22-Feb-2018: Lung cancer research–Why we need it and how we can get more

“Cancer research” is a broad term that encompasses everything from basic bench science, to translational research on patient-derived tumor specimens, to clinical trials, to studies on patient centered outcomes.  While it is obvious to all of us in the lung cancer community that research is critical to improving patient outcomes, lung cancer remains underfunded compared to other common cancers. Several different mechanisms exist to fund cancer research, including private philanthropy, Big Pharma, not-for-profit cancer research and advocacy groups, and government organizations including the DOD and NIH/NCI among others. Given funding imbalances, it… Read More