Scientists have stated that the key to whether or not a patient survives liver cancer is determined by the liver tissue that surrounds it.
They state that their findings could one day lead to a test to determine which patients need agressive forms of treatment following surgery to remove cancer from the liver.
They state that they have been able to identify up to 186 bits of genetic material, wherebye the activity level of that tissue determines the likelyhood of the cancer reappearing or not.
“What we found was that the information to predict future recurrence wasn’t in the primary tumor itself, but was in the surrounding non tumor liver tissue,
which suggests that the so-called recurrences aren’t really recurrences,” said Dr. Todd Golub, one of the researchers.
Liver cancer is a very serious form of the disease, and is the third most deadly cancer world wide.
“I think this is the start of a big step forward,” said Dr. Morris Sherman of the University of Toronto.