They invent a “weapon” against pancreatic cancer (and they need you)

This cancer is difficult to treat. It is now the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths in France and could become the second by 2020. But in the longer term, Toulouse researchers are working on an innovative gene therapy.

The team of Pierre Cordelier, director of research at INSERM and the Cancer Research Center of Toulouse, was working on an enzyme, cytidine deaminase (CDA), when it discovered, by chance, that its absence slowed the progression of pancreatic tumors. She would therefore act as an unfortunate dope.

This molecule is present everywhere, but in the case of pancreatic cancer, it seems to play a key role, says Louis Buscail, a specialist in pancreatic diseases. The idea is to target and inhibit it to slow the progression of the disease.

In a research laboratory. Drawing. – Mr Libert – 20 Minutes

A donor tree

This research is still in its infancy, but it has been selected, along with four other promising projects, by the Toulouse Cancer Santé Foundation, which supports research conducted on the Oncopole campus. To speed up the five winning projects, she wants to raise a million euros in all.

Some 600 sponsors are expected Tuesday, November 22 for a philanthropic evening. But the foundation also appeals to the general public via a website and its “donor tree”. The latter will have a physical existence and will be planted on the site of the Oncopole once the operation is over. “It will be formed of 10,000 cubes symbolically representing a donation of 100 euros,” says Jean-Luc Moudenc, the mayor of Toulouse and vice-president of the foundation.

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