July 3, 2019 – Tumors and Blood


Anchor lead: Can understanding blood flow in a tumor lead to better treatment? Elizabeth Tracey reports

What’s the best approach to treating a tumor? A new modeling method for assessing blood supply, critical to a tumor’s growth and survival, may help. That’s according to Arvind Pathek, an imaging expert at Johns Hopkins, and colleagues, who’ve developed a Google maps-like solution to the problem.

Pathek: The distribution of the blood in a tumor depends upon how much blood is delivered to the tumor and if the tumor is not what we call well-perfused, so it does not have a very good blood supply, then it doesn’t matter how much of the drug you give, not enough is going to be delivered. So it’s a very powerful tool for modeling drugs of different sizes, looking at blood distribution of tumor types, so we’ve actually created a framework where we use imaging data in conjunction with mathematical tools and models to create very realistic simulations of what these drugs are going to do in cancer.  :30

Pathek notes that tumor blood vessels are quite different from normal ones in both structure and function, and modeling helps take that into account. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.