Cancer Alicante | Rare tumors with worst survival rate now account for one in five

Rare tumors with worst survival rate now account for one in fiveAxel Alvarez

Neuroblastomaa disease in which cancer cells form in the neck, chest, or spinal cord; childhood leukemia; melanoma claw, malignant tumor of the fingernail or toenail; cancer of the nasopharynx or upper nasal cavity; salivary glands; cancer adrenal; And up to heart cancer, a very rare and very specific tumor. “This type of cancer has been studied very little because its rarity makes it very difficult to study,” says the researcher. scientific director of the scientific foundation Cancer Association, Marta Pujol, biochemist and PhD in molecular oncology.

This just some of the rare tumors that exist and are becoming more and more common. Although the average is in 6 victims per 100,000 inhabitants, If they are all added, cancer Rare cases currently account for every fifth diagnosis. Hence patient associations require more investment in research, since until recently victims and their families had to resort to associations such as Fipas as economic support to be able to Travel abroad for diagnostic examinations or treatment.

This company was founded in Castellon in 2013 and has 470 members throughout the country.

Its president is Mar Ailon explains that the pathologies they are trying to respond to (pheochromocytoma, paraganglioma and adrenal cancer) These are very rare cancers, “some of which are associated with a genetic mutation that affects children and young adults. Have there are few treatment options and less research effort given to them because they are rare diseases.a minority that affects fewer people.

“They have few treatment options and less research effort because they are rare, minority diseases.”

Mar Ailon. President of the Pheiphas Association

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The association was born promote research into pathologies that take a long time to diagnose and support victims and their families in demanding more treatments, faster diagnosis and “for ensure adequate follow-up of the patient because sometimes the initial oncologist does not have all the knowledge and cannot share therapeutic options. Tests for many rare types of cancer are already being carried out in Spain. therefore Phipas can devote all its funds to research.

Scientific foundations such as the Spanish Cancer Association and other international foundations are joining forces to double investment in research into new treatment methods. Oncologists say thatThe rare tumor can develop in any organ of the body. and even influence muscles and nervous system. According to Marta Pujol, “rare cancers are quite difficult to study. When you hear the word cancer, it seems that everything is the same, that everyone behaves the same, but there are more than 200 of them, each with different behavior. “That’s what makes it difficult to use the same treatment for everyone, even if they have common characteristics.”

“When you hear the word cancer, it seems that everything is the same, that everyone behaves the same, but there are more than 200 different ones, each with their own behavior”

Martha Puyol. Scientific Director of the Association Against Cancer Science Foundation

Although rare cancers collectively account for 20% of the global incidence of all tumors individually affect a small number of patients, making them difficult to study. Biochemistry explains that a sufficient number of patients and samples are needed to conduct a statistically significant study.. “Achieving this in this type of cancer is very difficult, so there is less research, less progress, and mortality is not decreasing as with other tumors.”

The Cancer Association Foundation is participating in an international competition with scientists from France, the Netherlands and Belgium to study rare cancers in clinical trials.. A decision on this issue has just been made and four projects have been awarded to treat these rare cancers. This foundation is the only Spanish foundation that is involved in this project.

He Ewing’s sarcoma, which ended the life of Aless Lechio, son of Ana Obregon. This is a rare type of cancer that occurs specifically in teenagers. Acute lymphoblastic leukemia another one for which the Barcelona Hospital Clinic has developed technology new advanced treatments for your treatment. This is CAR-T ARI-0001, approved by the Spanish Medicines Agency. They are currently working towards approval in Europe and have just received funding to conduct trials across Europe so that similar technologies that they are pioneering can be introduced.

All in all, That childhood cancer They are also considered rare “And everything that happens in the pediatric environment has a very big impact on the patient and his environment,” Pujol says. For tumors affecting children, “there are very important networks nationally and internationally to advance neuroblastoma research.”


All in all There is an increase in cancer cases, including rare ones. says an expert in molecular oncology. “This is a trend in all tumor pathologies; we are seeing an increase in morbidity, although, thank God, mortality does not accompany this increase. “What needs to be done is to keep mortality rates as stagnant as possible, and great progress has been made in trying to stop these rare cancers.” Mortality rates for rare cancers range from 45% to 60% over 5 years, while for more common tumors it ranges from 57% to 61%.

“There are the most common types of cancer, such as pancreatic, stomach or lung cancer, which have a very high mortality rate as their survival rate is less than 30% at 5 years.”

Martha Puyol. Scientific Director of the Association Against Cancer Science Foundation

The most common types of cancer are pancreatic, stomach or lung. which have a very high mortality rate as their survival rate is less than 30% at 5 years. “We have set ourselves the goal of doing something specific for these low-survival cancers to impact survival and reach 70% survival in 2030, and to achieve this we are working with both rare cancers and delayed-onset cancers. survivability.”

Juan Lledo, manager of the Provincial Cancer Association, points out that “there are many rare or infrequent tumors with low or stagnant survival. We need enough research to improve survival rates.For cancer such as breast cancer The survival rate is about 90%, but in other cases, such as the pancreas, it is about 7%.%. And research is the key to changing this situation.

“For cancers like breast cancer, the survival rate is about 90%, but for other cancers like pancreatic cancer, it’s about 7%. And research is the key to changing this situation.”

Juan Lledo. Manager of the Association against Cancer in Alicante

Cancer appears for various reasons. On the one side associated with aging, because the older we get, the more likely we are to develop it; and on the other with a genetic predisposition. But also on environmental issues. Experts note that up to 40% of cancer cases can be prevented through a healthy diet, avoiding smoking, because smoking is one of the triggers, and not only in the lungs, there are many others associated with this habit. Alcohol and obesityHeydad; as well as environmental factors, as well as pollutionalso influence an increase in the risk of tumors.

Research projects on rare cancers are supported, as explained by the Spanish Cancer Association Foundation.

“In the international appeal we just promoted, The five cancer research funds involved together budgeted ten million euros, and we ended up almost doubling that amount (18.5 million). because there really is a great need to investigate this. On the civil society side, we see our partners demanding this of us, and across all foundations we have doubled our investments to achieve greater impact on improving survival; specific treatment andreduce side effects, which is very important for children who will live their entire lives after cancer. “It is important to reduce toxicity and other damage that may result from treatment.”

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