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Key gene behind breast cancer identified. Pixabay

Researchers have used a new test for analysing paediatric tumours that may one day guide personalised treatment for children with cancer, according to new research.

The new technology can provide results for up to 16 patients in a week.


The study showed that by analysing 28 childhood tumour samples from nine cancer types, the paediatric cancer-focused test found more genetic mutations per sample compared with tests used to examine adult cancers.

In addition, it better identified weaknesses that can potentially be targeted with drugs.


technology could be used in a more proactive way to study the child’s cancer early and prepare for a disease relapse prior to its occurrence

“Paediatric cancers are often very aggressive, so doing these types of tests need to be very fast. Using targeted sequencing allows for a fast turnaround time and a simple workflow. It has a lot of potential to inform better treatment options for paediatric patients,” said lead author Amanda Lorentzian, graduate student at the University of British Columbia in Canada.

“This test uses DNA sequencing technology to look at thousands of specific regions in the tumour’s genome and identify changes or mutations in those areas,” said Chris Maxwell, associate professor at the varsity.

Currently, most children diagnosed with cancer receive treatment and survive. For many cancer types there is greater than an 80 per cent cure rate, but the possibility of relapse is always looming.


Most children diagnosed with cancer receive treatment and survive

Because cure rates drop dramatically for children that suffer a cancer relapse, this new technology may identify more targeted treatments, hopes Philipp Lange, assistant professor at the varsity.

In addition, this technology could be used in a more proactive way to study the child’s cancer early and prepare for a disease relapse prior to its occurrence, said the team.

Also Read: Risk Of Suicide Quadruples With Cancer: Study

While proactive treatment plans are still years away in the future, this study is the first step toward a personalised standard of care for childhood cancer patients.

Similar tests have been designed for adult cancers, however, childhood cancers require a unique approach since different tissues are affected and fewer drugs are safe for treating children. (IANS)


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The aim of the book is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

By Siddhi Jain

Delhi-based author Pritisha Borthakur is set to release her new book, 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories'. The 1,404-word children's book was put together to address a new kind of societal debacle in the family system. The author says the aim is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

The author who named the book after her twin sons -- Puhor and Niyor -- is a parent who has seen and heard the tales of ridicule and discrimination suffered by many in India and beyond. She says the book is an artistic illustration for kids that details how different families can live and coexist. Whether it's children with two dads or two moms, children with a single dad or single mom, and even multiracial family units, Borthakur's book teaches love, understanding, and compassion towards unconventional families.

Beyond race, gender, color, and ethnicity which have formed the bases for discrimination since the beginning of time, this book aims to bring to light a largely ignored issue. For so long, single parents have been treated like a taboo without any attempt to understand their situations; no one really cares how or why one's marriage ended but just wants to treat single parents as villains simply for choosing happiness and loving their children.

Homosexual parents, a relatively new family system, is another form that has suffered hate and discrimination for many years. Pritisha emphasizes the need to understand that diversity in people and family is what makes the world beautiful and colourful. 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race, and even differences in background

four children standing on dirt during daytime 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race and even differences in background. | Photo by Ben Wicks on Unsplash


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