Right now is a very exciting time for cancer research in British Columbia for several reasons, one of them being the huge advances that have been made in the technology we use at the BC Cancer Agency.
The BC Cancer Agency is a world leader in genomics research, which is the study of the genetic changes that lead to cancer development and growth. In the past decade there’s been an astronomical improvement in the technology used for this research, and thus information that would have taken years or even longer to get in the past can now be obtained in only hours. This information gives us a much clearer picture of how cancer cells are working.
This type of improvement could be compared (in the spirit of this week’s Grey Cup) to trying to follow a football game by listening to it on a crackly transistor radio versus watching it on a large flat screen high definition 3D TV! This clearer picture is a critical step in enabling us to design better ways to detect and treat cancers.
Another cutting-edge area of research that the BC Cancer Agency’s pancreatic group is involved in is nanotechnology, which is the use of extremely tiny devices to treat cancers. This may sound like something out of a science fiction movie, but is actually a very promising area of research, and we have an expert group studying this at the Agency.
There is a lot of excitement and hope for improvements in cancer treatments relating to this cutting-edge research, and experts at the Agency are leading the way!