Targeted Cancer Treatment Improves Patient Survival Rates, Greek Researcher Shows

Dr. Apostolia M. Tsimberidou, MD, PhD, Department of Investigational Cancer Therapeutics, Division of Cancer Medicine (Photo by Jr. Smith, University of Texas website)

NEW YORK – New research by the Anderson Cancer Centre at the University of Texas in Houston, headed by Greek researcher Dr. Apostolia Tsimberidou, has paved the way to better control of cancer and improved patient survival rates.

The research allows for personalized therapies that focus on specific gene mutations in each patient, giving the best possible treatment for each different one.

The multi-year study called IMPACT confirms that precision medicine is a more successful treatment strategy than non-targeted gene and molecular traditional therapy. It is the first and longest clinical trial so far on medical precision in terms of its positive impact on patient survival.

Specifically, the study, which included 3,743 patients aged 16 to 86 years old, with various types of advanced cancer (gastrointestinal, breast, lung, melanoma, etc.), showed that the average survival time of the group receiving targeted treatment was 9.3 months, as opposed to 7.3 months in patients receiving conventional treatments, adding two more months.

The patients surviving for up to three years reached 15 pct in the case of targeted treatment, compared with 7 pct in non-targeted treatment. Ten-year survival was achieved by 6 pct of patients who received targeted treatment, compared with only 1 pct of those who did not.

The researchers presented their findings at the annual conference of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in Chicago. Tsimberidou is one of the pioneers in promoting cancer prevention in the United States.