In the first experiment of its kind, scientists have revealed the precise identity of cancer cells of the most common childhood and adult kidney cancers. Researchers from the Wellcome Sanger Institute, the University of Cambridge, University of Newcastle and their collaborators showed that the cancer cells are versions of specific healthy cells from developing or adult kidneys.
Reported in the journal Science, this study could lead to the development of completely new methods of treating kidney cancers, which could persuade the cancerous cells to develop in specific ways into safer cells.
Kidney cancer is the seventh most common cancer in the UK with 12,500 new cases in 2015, mainly of adults with renal cell carcinomas. Treatments for this included surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy.
The most prevalent childhood kidney cancer is Wilms’ tumour, with about 80 children diagnosed each year in the UK. This mainly affects children under 5 years old, and although treatment for Wilms’ is usually successful, the chemotherapy can have serious long-term effects on the children.
In a huge study to understand these two most common types of kidney cancer, researchers looked at more than 72 thousand individual kidney cells from healthy and cancerous tissue. They compared
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