LA doctors experiment with biomarkers to treat prostate cancer

Urologists and oncologists in Latin America have begun to diagnose prostate cancer by identifying biomarkers that allow the creation of personalized medical treatments tailored to each patient.

The doctor Miguel Ángel Jiménez Ríos, a surgeon specializing in urology in Mexico, told EFE this Saturday that these tests at the molecular level are in the experimental stage in this medical area, but have helped to identify better cancer treatments.

"There is already identification of alterations in an almost standardized manner, which could help us to establish the treatments that medical oncologists carry out to control the disease according to the expression of molecular alterations in each patient."he said in an interview after his participation in the UROSummit 360 congress that concludes this Saturday in the Mexican city of Guadalajara.

According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed type of cancer in the male population in the Americas with 21.7% of cases, followed by lung cancer, with 9.5% of cases and colorectal, with 8%.

Jiménez Ríos, also head of the Department of Oncological Urology, of the National Institute of Cancerology, in Mexico City, explained that this type of test detects biomarkers or evidence of genetic alterations in blood and urine as well as in tumor tissue and metastasis. what gender.


Doctor Juan Pablo Sade, a clinical oncologist based in Buenos Aires, Argentina, explained to EFE that the detection of these specific biomarkers allows treatment to be personalized according to the characteristics of the patient, a technology that until recently was possible to apply in prostate cancer.

"We did not have these tests, neither for advanced cancer nor for localized cancer, until a few years ago, as was the case with breast and lung cancer, and now this reality is also reaching prostate cancer."indicated.

Although incipient, scientific progress is reaching hospitals in Latin America. For example, the National Cancer Institute of Mexico has access to a detection system with a program that detects 120 biomarkers, a limited number compared to systems that detect 300 or more alterations that are used in medical centers on other continents.

The urologist surgeon at the Social Security Hospital in Panama City, Alejandro Manduley, told EFE that one of the advantages of these tests is that it allows not only individualized care but also to learn more about the molecular profiles of each sector of the population and generate public health policies that make its benefits accessible to all people.


Technology in prostate cancer has made it possible to increase the average survival expectancy for patients to almost four years in just 20 years of medical research and innovation in treatments, the interviewed specialists agreed.

"In the most advanced stage of prostate cancer, which is the one that causes death, the average life span went from 18 months in 2004 to an average of 36 months a decade later, today, with the incorporation of all the treatments that survived more than 45 months"said Sade, who works at the Alexander Fleming Institute in Buenos Aires.

Jiménez Ríos assured that prostate cancer is becoming a chronic disease, because although it is not curable if it is detected in advanced stages, it is possible to live longer and have quality of life.

"The urologists with the hormonal blockade treatment were limited and the patients died. Now they live longer with chemotherapy, anti-angiogenic therapies and now we are on the threshold of much better targeted therapies so that the patient has a better survival and, above all, with quality of life."he stressed.

The challenge for specialists in urology and prostate cancer lies in strengthening prevention strategies that help diagnose the disease in its early stages and not when it has already metastasized.

"Patients arrive at a metastatic moment more frequently than at a localized moment which would be curable, for this reason survival as a population is less affected, the success of an early detection campaign is that we lower this ratio, if the majority of Our diagnoses are cancer, mortality will decrease"Manduley concluded.

The UROSummit 360 congress brought together 280 leading medical specialists in oncology in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.

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