Ovarian cancer: molecular characterization

Published on July 31, 2019   25 min

Other Talks in the Series: The Female Reproductive System: from Basic Science to Fertility Treatments

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The subject that I'm going to discuss today is related to "Ovarian Cancer". My name is Gil Mor and I'm a professor in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and I am the Director of the Reproductive Immunology unit at Yale University School of Medicine.
Ovarian cancer is the leading cause of death from all the gynecological cancers and the reason is because it presents with advanced stage in the disease. It's very difficult to identify the presence of the cancer in early stages as we will discuss later and unfortunately, there are no effective new therapies that can treat this terrible killer.
Ovarian cancer is a successful first-line therapy. 80 percent of the patients respond to the treatment that involves taxol and carboplatin. So the question is, what is the contradiction between the high degree of mortality that we see in ovarian cancer patients and the successful response? The answer is that even after complete de-bulking and chemotherapy,
60 percent of the patients will relapse within a year and 80 percent within 5 years,
and the problem is precisely in the following aspects. Recurrence is characterized by what we define as chemoresistant disease and second, the metastasis or carcinomatosis. That is the spreading of the disease all over the intraperitoneal cavity.