Jul 28 2013

More Praises to Sing

by at 9:48 pm under Uncategorized

I hope you had a nice weekend. Harriet and I were in Chicago for a family wedding and had a wonderful time, though it was unseasonably cold there. If you haven’t done the Architectural Boat Tour on the Chicago River, put it on the travel itinerary the next time you are in town. It is a bit kitschy, but the river offers the best way to see and appreciate Chicago’s marvelous skyline. Of course, don’t miss the Art Institute – they had a fabulous exhibition on Impressionism and Fashion.

The week preceding our trip was pretty much consumed by CCSG site visit preparations and getting out some long-overdue manuscripts. One of the manuscripts deals with the G-DOC and how it was used to help us analyze a small but highly informative set of samples from 40 patients with early stage colorectal cancer. Subha Madhavan is lead author, and the paper has now been submitted. It is a remarkable tour de force, looking comprehensively at a suite of molecular analyses and determining the set of information that yields the best prognostic information. Yuriy Gusev did some wonderful analyses, and the actual molecular profiling, led by Steve Byers, was superb.

I want to take an opportunity to give props to Amrita Cheema, who has done a marvelous job in leading the metabolomics effort for the PMSR. Amrita has developed this shared resource, with the support and mentorship of Al Fornace, to the point where it is a distinctive and well-respected service that creates remarkable added value for Georgetown Lombardi’s translational research. In the case of the colorectal data set, it turns out that metabolomic profiling was the single most effective way to determine prognosis in people about to undergo curative-intent surgery for early stage colon cancer. Imagine that – a blood or urine sample could identify who will be cured, and who should be considered for follow up chemotherapy to prevent relapse. That is the power and promise of personalized medicine. It is through the work of Amrita, and so many other wonderful folks who run shared resources at Lombardi, that we will ultimately be able to incorporate these tools into the everyday care of people. Thanks, Amrita.

If you are here, this week promises to be another busy one, dominated by more papers to submit and more site visit preparations. For those taking some time off, I hope your week is relaxing as we approach the dog days of summer.



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