CIHR Team in Genomic, Imaging and Modeling Approaches to Advance Population-Based Colorectal Cancer Screening
This program's focus is to develop novel easy-to-administer tests that identify individuals at the earliest, most curable stages of the disease
|Project Leaders||Isabella Tai , Andrew Coldman, Stuart Peacock, Mark Elwood, Calum MacAulay, Haishan Zeng|
University of British Columbia
BC Cancer Agency
Canadian Institutes of Health Research
Anatomical Model showing the human colon
This CIHR-funded grant will help to address current problems with colorectal cancer screening in Canada. Current screening methods, particularly the Fecal Occult Blood Test, have not been widely adopted by physicians and patients due to high false-positive results, which lead to uncomfortable colon preparation for invasive, costly and not risk-free procedures to confirm the presence or lack of polyps. As a consequence, the mortality rate from colorectal cancer is substantially higher than it could be if less invasive, safer and more affordable tools were in routine use. Hence, it is important to develop better screening tools that are both safe for the patients, and cost effective for the health care system.
Using a multi-disciplinary team approach consisting of a broad cross section of scientific and health care specialists, we will work to: create new diagnostic tests to evaluate a person’s risk of developing colorectal cancer (i.e., low, medium or high risk based on genetic markers); develop a safe and novel imaging probe that may be used in a physician’s office; and finally, assess whether these methods are more effective and more economical than current methods.
The CIHR Team of Research Scientists and Clinicians
Dr. Tai’s lab will mainly focus on the genomics aspects of the study, and will identify and validate genetic markers that will be suitable for use in screening applications. These screening tests will help to identify people that are at high, medium or low risk of developing polyps and/or colorectal cancer, with the ultimate goal to stratify high-risk individuals for frequent screening, and low-risk individuals for infrequent screening.
Drs. MacAulay and Zeng will focus on creating a prototype photonic imaging probe that can ultimately be commercialized and safely used for colorectal cancer screening. This work will be coupled to Dr. Tai’s work and will investigate the benefit of using optical contrast agents coupled to specific molecular markers to improve colorectal cancer detection.
Drs. Coldman, Peacock and Elwood will extend their existing Markov simulation models to assess the potential benefits of using improved screening technologies, including the genomic and imaging tools developed in this study, and to conduct economic evaluations of the screening applications for Canada.
Recent Publications Arising from this Research:
- Wang W, Short M, Tai IT, Zeng H. Disposable sheath that facilitates endoscopic Raman spectroscopy. J Biomed Opt. 2016 Feb 1;21(2):25001.
- Short MA, Wang W, Tai IT, Zeng H. Development and in vivo testing of a high frequency endoscopic Raman spectroscopy system for potential applications in the detection of early colonic neoplasia. J Biophotonics. 2016 Jan;9(1-2):44-8.
- Feng S, Wang W, Tai IT, Chen G, Chen R, Zeng H. Label-free surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy for detection of colorectal cancer and precursor lesions using blood plasma. Biomed Opt Express. 2015 Aug 24;6(9):3494-502.
- Neijzen R, Wong MQ, Gill N, Wang H, Karim T, Anantha M, Strutt D, Waterhouse D, Bally MB, Tai IT, Ng SS, Yapp DT. Irinophore C™, a lipid nanoparticulate formulation of irinotecan, improves vascular function, increases the delivery of sequentially administered 5-FU in HT-29 tumors, and controls tumor growth in patient derived xenografts of colon cancer. J Control Release. 2015 Feb 10;199:72-83.
- Wong J, Hasan M, Rahman M, Yu A, Chan S, Schaeffer D, Kennecke H, Lim H, Owen D, Tai IT. Nucleophosmin 1, upregulated in adenomas and cancers of the colon, inhibits p53-mediated cellular senescence. International Journal of Caner. 2013 Oct 1;133(7):1567-77.
For all project related inquires please contact us.
Anita Fang, Projects Manager
Genome Sciences Centre, BC Cancer Agency
Phone: 604-675-8000 x 7503