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‘Google Earth’ approach to tackling cancer

|10 February 2017|


Scientists in Scotland are working to develop a new way of mapping tumours that could transform how cancer is diagnosed and treated.

Researchers at the Cancer Research UK Beatson Institute in Glasgow are to receive £2.2 million from Cancer Research UK as part of a £16 million investment by the charity in a global project that aims to create the ‘Google Earth’ of tumour mapping.

From whole tumours right down to the individual fats and proteins inside cells, the team will map and visualise every bit of these tumours to create faithful 3D representations for the first time.

By doing this, they aim to create the cancer equivalent of ‘Google Earth’ which will allow scientists not only to identify a ‘house’ and where it is in a country, but also who’s inside, what they’re eating and watching on TV.

Professor Owen Sansom, interim director at the Cancer Research UK Beatson Institute, said: “Our hope is that developing these new tumour maps will help us answer key questions about cancer that we still don’t have answers to – questions like how do cancers become resistant to treatment. Doing this could help us identify new and better ways to diagnose and treat this disease – and help more people survive cancer for longer.”

The funding for the ground breaking project will come from the first Cancer Research UK Grand Challenge awards – set up to revolutionise the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer.






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Iain Robertson
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