New insight into how cancer spreads

Experts say new research gives them insight into how cancer spreads through the body and it could be a game changer for patients.

MINNEAPOLIS - Experts say new research gives them insight into how cancer spreads through the body and it could be a game changer for patients.

Ever walk past the research buildings at the University of Minnesota and wonder what they're doing in there?

On this day they've made another step in the battle to beat cancer. Specifically, Biomedical Engineering Professor Dave Odde is talking about looking at cancer not through a physician's lense but through an engineer's.

"We're trying to be able to predict the next move that cancer cells are going to make – how do they move from their environment," Said Odde.

They think they know the answer. What they discovered cancer cells are a lot like "Goldilocks."
They don't like conditions too hard or too soft. Scientifically speaking, they don't spread in a person's body when they're in stiff bone tissue or soft fatty tissue.

"So what we did we built a computer model that would predict how you can control that sweet spot and then we tested it out for brain cancer cells," said Odde.

In hopes of being able to trick the cancer cells to stay where they are. "We want to limit them…keep them in place, not move. And treat them locally for example with surgery or radiation or other standard treatment," said Odde.

They plan on testing what they found in brain cancer patients who are looking for hope. And they may have found it in the research buildings at the U of M.

© 2017 KARE-TV


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