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The Circle

Daffodil Circle ISSUE 6

Harnessing new technology to accelerate cancer research

Your support is leading to exciting developments in cancer cell identification.

Technological advancements bring with them excitement for the possibilities they unleash. Artificial Intelligence in the field of cancer research has significant potential to accelerate our understanding of cancer, leading to new treatment options.

Jose Polo


This is a highly innovative approach and has the potential to revolutionise the way in which new cancer targets are discovered."

Thanks to generous supporters, Professor Jose Maria Polo and his team at Monash University have received a Cancer Council Victoria Venture Grant. This has led to them harnessing the latest technology to predict ‘master regulators’ in cancer cells with positive implications for people with prostate cancer.

“Our project team has applied a sophisticated algorithm to identify the factors that are most essential for cancer cell survival,” says Professor Polo.

“This is a highly innovative approach and has the potential to revolutionise the way in which new cancer targets are discovered.”

Professor Polo’s work has focussed on aggressive prostate cancer where the cancer has spread to other parts of the body and limited treatment options are available. Using a computational tool designed to identify what makes a cell that specific cell, they’ve worked to uncover the key signalling networks of prostate tumours. The team hope this will lead to new therapeutic targets for patients with prostate cancer.

Jose Polo's Team

They’ve already made important discoveries using this approach. Computational analysis has not only allowed them to predict key factors that control the tumour characteristics, but also to predict factors that support normal prostate cells. This discovery has allowed them to experiment with re-expressing these ‘normal’ factors back into a cancer cell with promising results that have the potential to reduce the growth of the cancer.

Work like Professor Polo’s and his team is made possible through the support of gifts in Wills, which ensures new possibilities, new research angles and new ideas can be explored to the fullest.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the incredible people who have generously donated to fund such innovative research. This type of high risk and high reward research aims to make real breakthroughs for people who are suffering from cancer and reduce their impact in the community,” says Professor Polo.

With the recent boom in technological advances in the hands of our most brilliant and dedicated cancer researchers, we’re excited to see what the future holds!

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