Topic: GI ASCO, 2013, San Francisco, your donations at work
The Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation in conjunction with the Conquer Cancer Foundation (ASCO) provided crucial funding for Cholangiocarcinoma Research. In 2011 the Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation funded a Young Investigator Grant in the amount of 50 thousand Dollars to Dr. Flavio Rocha, MD, of Virginia Mason Medical Center for his research project “CEACAM6 as biologic marker and prognostic of biliary malignancy”.
With the support of his research team, Dr. Rocha has been able to determine that CEACAM6 is a protein that is indeed present in cholangiocarcinoma, and that in a certain type of cholangiocarcinoma that arises inside the liver, the presence of this protein in the tumor is a marker of more aggressive disease. Dr. Rocha’s team has also identified CEACAM6 in the bile of patients whose cholangiocarcinoma had been surgically removed, and they are working to compare levels of the protein in the bile of patients without cancer to determine if it can be used as a marker of disease presence or response to treatment.
“If these markers can be shown to pinpoint cancerous tissues and distinguish them from normal bile ducts, then they can be used to design better imaging tools or therapeutics,” Dr. Rocha said.
The Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation contributed 60 thousand Dollars to the Long Term International Fellowship grant received by Suebpong Tanasanvimon, MD, Of King Chualongkorn Memorial Hospital, Thailand. The combined grant of 110 thousand Dollars (Conquer Cancer foundation and Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation) enabled him to pursue a research project focused on cholanciocarcinoma at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center under the mentorship of Milind Javle, MD. In some parts of the world, a parasite called a liver fluke can infect the bile ducts and cause cancer. Dr. Tanasanvimon, with the support of the funding, sought to determine if the miRNA expression profile of cholangiocarcinoma associated liver fluke infection differed significantly from the miRNA expression profile of spontaneous cholangiocarcinoma.
The results of his study demonstrate that the microRNA expression profiles are different between these two groups, confirming that THEY ARE TWO SEPARATE ENTITIES.
Dr. Tanasanvimon plans to use the knowledge and experience he gained at MD Anderson Cancer Center to conduct pioneering cholangiocarcinoma research in Thailand.
Dr. Rocha received the Young Investigator Award for his project; Dr. Tanasanvimon received the Long-term International Fellowship (LIFe) Award.