Liver cancer, also known as hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), is the world’s fourth most deadly type of cancer. It is an increasing concern, since this disease is associated annually with more than 21,000 deaths in the United States and more than 600,000 new cases worldwide.
Liver cancer often results from liver-related illnesses, such as hepatitis B, hepatitis C, alcohol abuse, fatty liver disease and exposure to chemicals.
There currently is no sure way to detect HCC in its early stages, resulting in a dismal 5-year survival rate of less than 6 percent. By the time HCC is discovered, it usually is in its late stages, surgery is no longer an option and there are few other treatments available. HCC tumors are especially resistant to chemotherapy, and the molecular mechanisms underlying this poor response are not well understood. Clearly, there is a pressing need for additional research into finding better treatments for this disease.
Dr. Holly Yin, Director of TGen’s new Cellular Genomics Collaborative Center (CGCC), is developing new possibilities for early detection and treatment of HCC.
She is intimately familiar with this disease, having lost her beloved husband, Quick Que, to liver cancer. Despite the best efforts of clinical and scientific teams, he was lost only 3 months after his initial diagnosis.
It is Dr. Yin’s passionate mission to use her expertise in cellular and molecular genomics and the latest technologies available to examine and understand HCC. Her studies should reveal the genetic basis of this cancer and how it progresses. Dr. Yin’s findings will help clinical teams create more predictive diagnostic tools, discover new genetic targets and apply the appropriate drugs for each individual patient.
The research conducted by Dr. Yin and her lab should advance HCC research, providing meaningful benefits for patients, and fulfilling Dr. Yin’s dream of saving lives.
TGen Clinical Research Service
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To discuss ways to become involved and support cancer research at TGen, contact the TGen Foundation at Foundation@tgen.org, or call 602.343.8411