Cherri Gregg

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – One of the world’s leading DNA and genetic mapping experts will be in Philadelphia Monday for the Association of Independent Research Institutes national conference. He will explain a new way of treating cancer.

This novel approach to cancer research takes fragments of a patient’s cancerous tumor and implants into the body of a mouse with a weakened immune system. The mouse then develops a cancer genetically identical to the patient.

“One of the biggest problems with cancer therapeutics is predicting who will respond to what drugs,” says Dr. Edison Lui, CEO of the Jackson Laboratory.

He says the process creates “avatars” for patients, which allows doctors to test how a tumor will respond to specific treatments.

“In advance we will be able to predict what will or will not work for an individual. This will not only save time and money, but also prevent side effects from therapies that won’t work,” Dr. Lui explains.

He says doctors can test multiple treatments and new combinations at one time, which could be a huge breakthrough, especially for patients with rare tumors.

The conference will take place at the Hyatt Regency on Penn’s Landing beginning Sunday.

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