New treatments for colon cancer
By Amina Abdul Salam
The seventh international Gastro-Intestinal Liver and Uro-Oncology Conference has revealed a new genetic map for colon tumours that led to creating different techniques for treatment, which have contributed to high recovery rates.
The event also revealed five new immune and targeted therapies for the treatment of tumours of the digestive system, in addition to the superiority of immuno-therapy over chemotherapy.
Dr Hisham el-Ghazali, Professor of Oncology, Ain Shams University and General Secretary of the Conference, said that the genetic map was divided into four, according to genome and resulting in different treatment strategies, especially in advanced stages.
The conference also announced the success of immune therapy in colon tumours with a 70 per cent response, compared to 10 per cent in chemotherapy for advanced colon tumours, Dr el-Ghazali said.
Also announced at the event was the appearance of five new drugs for tumours of the digestive system, the kidney and the prostate. Dr el-Ghazali said that a workshop of robot surgery was held during the conference and attended by Dr Amr Fergani, Urologist, Head of the Tumour Surgery Department, Cleveland, USA.
During one of the conference sessions, Dr Wahid Yussri, Professor of Oncology at the National Cancer Institute, focused on the chemotherapy technique of thermal heating to remove peritoneal tumours.
For the first time in Egypt, he said, the results of the most updated therapeutic protocol for the prevention of the spread of peritoneal tumours were announced during the conference.
Concerning the volume of tumours problem in Egypt, Dr Heba el-Zawahri, Professor of Oncology at the National Cancer Institute, said that tumours of the digestive system range from 16 to 20 per cent develop from cancerous tumours in general and are the most prevalent in men.
She added that the prevalence of primary liver cancer tumours is due to the hepatitis C virus (HCV) and also liver cirrhosis due to the effect of HCV which is the catalyst factor for affliction with malignant liver tumours.
The real reasons for the tumours in the digestive system among young people are smoking and narcotics because they cause severe and chronic inflammation of the stomach and colon.
She said that cases of liver tumours in Egypt are most common among men and women so studies showed that the infection rates have increased and cases of colorectal tumours were diagnosed at the age of 13 years old.
Therefore, studies are under-way at Ain Shams University and a number of research centres to get acquainted with the reasons behind the affliction of the young with cancerous tumours, Dr el-Zawahri said.