Améliorer la thérapie radionucléidique ciblée des tumeurs neuroendocrines par la personnalisation du traitement et la radiosensibilisation tumorale.

Chercheurs-boursiers cliniciens- Junior 1 | Concours 2012-2013

Jean-Mathieu Beauregard

Centre de recherche du Centre hospitalier universitaire de Québec (CRCHUQ)


Domaine : Cancer

Neuroendocrine tumors, which arise most frequently from the digestive system, are one of the fastest growing classes of cancers in incidence worldwide. A large proportion of patients with neuroendocrine tumors present at an advanced stage, when their disease has spread, and cannot be cured by surgery. Conventional drug therapy options for these patients have limited efficacy. A newer, more promising kind of therapy uses a receptor found on neuroendocrine tumors to deliver radiation therapy in a very targeted manner. It is called targeted radionuclide therapy. First clinical results of this therapy in patients with neuroendocrine tumors are encouraging, but cure still remains rare. Fortunately, there are ways to further improve this therapy.

Currently, targeted radionuclide therapy is commonly administered as a fixed, "one-size-fits-all" dose. However, by tailoring the dose according to individual patient characteristics, it could be possible to maximize the chances of cure, without increasing the risk of adverse reactions. But before doing so, there is a need to evaluate the worthiness of this approach by looking at how the parameters that can be used to personalize the dose are related to the therapy outcome. This is the goal of a clinical study part of this research program.

Another approach that will be explored through this research initiative is the combination of targeted radionuclide therapy with new drugs that can augment the sensitivity of neuroendocrine tumors to radiation, thus resulting in more damage to the cancer without causing more adverse reactions.

Together, these novel strategies to enhance one of the most promising therapies for neuroendocrine tumors could result in tangible improvements in the outcome of patients suffering from neuroendocrine tumors treated with targeted radionuclide therapy. This research program is focussed on improving the care of, and ultimately curing patients with neuroendocrine tumors through multimodality personalized medicine.