It’s not hard to kill cancer cells; it’s just hard to kill them without killing healthy cells, too. A research team at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center has received a $4 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to develop more precisely targeted cancer therapies.
The research, led by doctors Chris Kemp and Carla Grandori, uses a technique called RNA interference, which silences a chosen gene. High-throughput screening on special machines lets scientists quickly silence thousands of genes one-by-one, until they find one that stops the cancer. These genes are the possible target for new cancer drugs.
The research will initially focus on tumors taken from patients with aggressive squamous cell carcinoma, pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, and triple-negative breast cancer.