WORLD CANCER DAY: The most common tumors in women are breast, colorectal and corpus uteri and in men, prostate, lung and colorectal


February 4th is World Day against Cancer. In Catalonia, this disease is the most common cause of death in men and the second in women. The World Health Organization dedicates the day, like last year, to break myths about the disease. You can view the most common myths by clicking here.

During 2013 the Catalan Institute of Oncology attended 51,362 cancer patients, of which 11,672 were new patients, representing nearly 30 % of all that were detected in Catalonia (about 35,000). The remaining cases treated, 39,690 are monitoring patients. The most common tumors seen in men are prostate cancer, lung and colon and rectum. In women have been breast, colon and rectum, and uterine body. According to projections from the Department of Health, cancer cases will increase in the coming years, mainly due to the aging population. In fact, aging and increasing population could explain the 69 % increase in the number of cancer cases expected in women in 2020. However, the death of most tumors continue to decline as a result of early detection and new treatments, leading to a higher specificity and less side effects occur .

The future of cancer research

Ramon Salazar, researcher at IDIBELL colorectal cancer group and head of clinical and translational research at ICO does not like to talk about personalized medicine, he prefers to speak of precision medicine. “We are working to find the molecular signatures of each subtype of cancer in order to perform a specific research of treatment that should apply to each of them.” “There is not a unique breast or liver cancer; there are several subtypes according to molecular alteration that produces it. A drug can be very efficient for one patient but not another and both suffer the same side effects of chemotherapy” Currently in the clinic and are being used more than a dozen drugs that specifically attack certain tumor subtypes. “The illusion of oncologists is to become molecular doctors,” said Salazar, ” ie have all relevant genomic alterations in each tumor and a battery of effective drugs to treat each alteration that cause them.”

IDIBELL is one of the focal points in cancer research. Half of the research carried out for its researchers is aimed at combating this disease either from the most basic point of view or from the translational point of view to get laboratory discoveries to patients.

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