Staying on Target

What characteristics make a cancer therapy more likely to effectively treat disease?

May 2018

Targeted therapies have had a huge impact on cancer treatment, in some cases significantly improving patient survival – but not in all cases. To treat the cancer, the drug must, of course, reach the tumor tissue and be taken up by cells, but this doesn’t always happen effectively despite targeting efforts. Why not?

Tumors and their surrounding environments are complex and heterogeneous – resulting in different responses to the same drug. Katarzyna A. Rejniak and Aleksandra Karolak of the Rejniak Lab at the Integrated Mathematical Oncology Department at the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute in Tampa, Florida, are part of a team that has combined mathematical modeling and single-cell imaging of cancer cells to better understand what drug properties make for more efficient drug uptake (1). Here, we find out more.