Translational medicine — Innovations in diagnosis and treatment


Translational medicine is a new stage in the development of medicine

Currently, translational medicine is a new stage in the development of medicine. This approach referred to as «bench-to-bedside» provides for transferring basic scientific discoveries through clinical application into new diagnostics and medical treatments.

It is the translational medicine that will play the leading role in the development of biomedicine in the decades to come.

Study of the biology of tumor cells, search for molecular markers, pre-clinical and clinical trials of new drugs are among the scientific priorities of the Institute. The scientific research within the priority areas enabled the Institute to make a significant contribution to the development of modern translational medicine.

Research has acquired a new meaning, as an impressive arsenal of modern methodological approaches allows one to gain new fundamental knowledge and facts, which lay the foundation for novel developments in cancer prevention, early diagnosis and effective treatment.

Among the priorities of world progress in fundamental science and translational medicine, molecular oncology is an area of prime importance. The identification of regulatory molecules that play an important role in malignant transformation of the cell is one of the fundamental tasks in molecular oncology. In this area, the Institute has a priority in studying the biological role of CD150 expression in tumors of various histogenesis. This provides great opportunities for the potential use of this biomarker in the differential diagnosis of malignant tumors.

The Institute has made significant progress in addressing the urgent issues of diagnosing oncohematological diseases. The state-of-the-art diagnostic studies of lineage-specific and differentiation antigens are provided in compliance with modern classifications of tumors of hematopoietic and lymphoid tissues. In terms of translational oncology, the precise diagnosis of hematological malignancies is crucial for prognosis of disease, delineation of high-risk groups and adjustment of treatment schedules.

Modern understanding of alterations at the molecular level in cancer cells has radically changed approaches to addressing the most pressing problems in oncology. Cancer Biotherapy (use of interferon, interferon inducers, and probiotics) is one of such approaches helpful in enhancing anti-tumor defense and reducing the toxicity of cytostatics.

Another important approach to solving the problems of modern oncology is vaccinotherapy aimed at generating long-term immune response for inhibiting tumor growth and preventing the development of recurrences and metastases in cancer patients. The Ukrainian scientists have proved that the clinical use of vaccines based on the products of microbial origin is helpful in improving the treatment outcome in patients with cancer of the lung, stomach or gastrointestinal tract due to the enhancement of killer cell activity.

One more high-priority area in translational medicine concerns with the problem of drug resistance. In this area, the Institute has significant achievements aimed at improving the selectivity of chemotherapeutic drugs and developing ways to overcome resistance to anticancer therapy. A miRNA-based approach for correcting disorders of iron metabolism has been developed that may be helpful in overcoming drug resistance. The study of regulatory miRNAs opens new possibilities for regulating the functions of the genes responsible for proliferation, apoptosis, metastatic potential of the tumor, etc.

Furthermore, a nanocomposite-based system (cisplatin and magnetic fluid) has been developed, which ensures targeted transport of cytotoxic agents to the tumor guided by the constant magnetic field. Our findings provide a fundamental basis for the use of targeted transport in order to increase the efficacy of anticancer therapy and overcome drug resistance in cancer patients.

A method of photodynamic therapy of malignant tumors using photosensitizing compounds in the form of complexes with antibodies to angiogenic factors helps to improve the treatment outcome due to increased accumulation of photosensitizing agent in tumor tissue and scheduling the sessions of photodynamic therapy to the most favorable time of the day. The arrangements required for the implementation of the modified version of the photodynamic therapy of tumors in clinical practice of Ukraine is underway.

The development of new sorbents for medical use and understanding of the mechanisms of their action and experimental evaluation of their efficacy make it possible to expand the range of problems, which translational medicine helps to resolve by the methods of sorption therapy.

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