A research study published in Nature Methods has uncovered a new technique to ‘listen in’ to how millions of individual cancer cells are communicating with each other in miniature tumours grown in the laboratory. This research is the first time that scientists have been able to analyse the signalling molecules that cancer cells use to communicate with each other in the individual cells that make up a tumour.
Being able to understand how cells communication could reveal how tumours are able to evade the immune system and become resistant to treatments. This finding could allow for more effective new drugs to be developed. Doctors could also select the best course of treatment for each individual patient by testing treatments on the cells that make up the patient’s tumour in the laboratory before the treatment is prescribed.