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Modeling Cancer

According to scientists, the way that tumors spread to the rest of the body can be represented in a mathematical model as a network. The size of the spreading cancer to other parts of the body, and where the spread occurs is based on the sizes and recurrence. Although rate of spread typically is hard to figure out, the size of the cancer, as well as a variety of other factors, could help to discover the path that something like this would take in its spread throughout the body, and maybe help to find an easier way to stop the spread.

Scientists discovered that not only did the tumor size matter, because it did not completely affect the tumor’s ability to survive, which may affect the ways that treatment is done on every different type of tumor. Using the models of the post-surgery disease growth allows scientists to sort of predict the seemingly spontaneous growth of tumors. The treatments can be manipulated on a per-patient basis in order to optimize each client’s individual needs based on their current condition. Retrospective analysis of the datasets were used to figure out patterns in cancers between unique to each patient.

Similar to how a network works, where certain more influential parts of the network have a larger effect on the nodes closer to them, the size of a tumor can help to figure out where and how the cancer will spread. Through use of mathematical modeling, representing things like tumors and cancers as nodes in a graph, data is created and manipulated to make a mimicked version of the cancer spread. This in turn can be used to not only for one patient but for future use, in predicting the outcomes of similar cases.




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November 2015