The real fight at flinders

The Real Fight at Flinders

16 October 2012

Flinders researchers are not worried about headlines - today they are only worrying about ways to prevent cancer from occurring and ways to detect cancer at its earliest stages.

Winning accolades for their innovative discoveries world-wide, Flinders researchers have recently uncovered how cancer cells communicate with other cells when they are starved of oxygen using small parcels of genetic material. These parcels can be used to develop a new early-detection blood test.

These invaluable new findings will provide a new tool targeting earlier treatment of aggressive breast cancers and other solid tumours.

Flinders is also home to leading research in cancer of the oesophagus and the stomach, which is looking at specialised treatment for pre-cancerous and cancerous lesions in the oesophagus, and tackling gastrointestinal disorders before they become cancer.

Other research is focussing on developing a highly sensitive blood test for bowel cancer to enable more people to participate in screening and thus help prevent the onset of bowel cancer. 

Dietary prevention is on the agenda at Flinders with a large focus on determining how dietary agents (including selenium, fibre, resistant starch, fish oil, green tea and curcumin) can prevent cancer-causing DNA damage in the bowel.

Other research is looking at reducing the risk of cancer through changing lifestyle behaviours, such as diet and lifestyle choices, and is investigating the potential for new social networking and other technologies to help change the public’s reluctance to participate in screening programs.

Exciting world-leading research at Flinders is finding low doses of radiation, such as those you might get from an x-ray, may help prevent cancer by activating defences within normal cells which can help to kill cancer cells and protect against further radiation exposure.

Survivorship care is an emerging and important field of research at Flinders, with the development of one of the few cancer survivorship programs in Australia.

The Flinders Cancer Survivorship Program research interests include development of models of survivorship care delivery, integration with primary care, cancer rehabilitation, nutrition and exercise, fertility and cancer, cancer and supportive care and psycho-oncology.

These are just some of the projects of the more than 100 leading biomedical, behavioural and clinical researchers working within the Flinders Centre for Innovation in Cancer conducting laboratory and clinical trials to find solutions for numerous types of cancers.

The Flinders Medical Centre Foundation works to fund their cutting edge research so as to prevent cancers such as that of the breast, bowel, prostate, oesophagus, ovaries, cervix, kidneys, lung, liver, blood (leukaemia) and brain tumours.

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