chapter  2
18 Pages

Developing More Successful Cancer Treatments with Physical Oncology

WithJoseph D. Butner

Physical oncology has the potential to bridge the gap between the disciplines, quantifying through mathematical modeling the biophysical conditions affecting cancer treatment and tumor growth at multiple scales within the body, from the molecular (nano-)scale to the macroscale. Physical oncology attempts to provide physicians with patient-specific information that can lead to better-designed treatment approaches, with quantifiable predictions about the growth of tumors, the efficacy of drugs, and even survival rates of patients. Genetic alteration within cancers that have been exposed to the first round of chemotherapy is a commonly identified phenomenon leading to the proliferation of chemoresistant tumors. Cell cycles also play a role in the cell's ability to resist chemotherapy. Mathematical modeling of cancer and physical oncology in general is ultimately a pursuit of improved patient health and quality of life through more accurate diagnosis and targeted, patient-specific treatment.