One of the biggest challenges to the development of medical treatments for cancer is the fact that there is no single kind of cancer. Cancers derive from many kinds of cells and tissues, and each have their own characteristics, behaviors, and susceptibilities to anti-cancer drugs. A treatment that works on colon cancer might have little to no effect on lung cancer, for example.
So, to create effective treatments for a cancer, scientists seek insight into what make its cells tick. In a new paper appearing in Nature Communications, Caltech researchers show that a framework they developed, using a specialized type of microscopy, allows them to probe the metabolic processes inside cancer cells.
The work was conducted by researchers from the laboratory of Lu Wei, assistant professor of chemistry, as well as from the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle and UCLA. It utilizes a technique called Raman spectroscopy in conjunction