Cancer today, heart damage tomorrow?

Cancer patients often become heart patients. This is because chemotherapy affects not only cancer cells but also healthy cells, such as the heart muscle cells. In order to prevent heart damage after chemotherapy, we first need to know what factors increase the risk of heart damage. And that is what Sibren Haesen (Uhasselt) has made his mission. With his Ph.D., he wants to help ensure that today's cancer patients do not become tomorrow's heart patients.

How we teach your body to unmask cancer

Did you know that cancer cells are not so different from our healthy cells? This makes it difficult for T-cells, important immune cells in our body, to recognise and fight cancer cells. Cancer researcher Heleen Hanssens (VUB-FWO) wants to give T-cells a helping hand by equipping them with more sensitive receptors, or antennae, that are pre-programmed to unmask cancer cells. In the lab, she is looking for the perfect form for these CAR antennae, so that they become more stable and better at detecting cancer cells. 
Van den Steen

Swallowing rehabilitation in head and neck cancer patients

Radiation can save the lives of people with head and neck cancer. Unfortunately, many patients develop swallowing disorders as a result of the treatment, which makes it impossible for them to eat solid food. Leen Van den Steen (UAntwerpen - UZA) wants to help them. How? With tongue strength training.
KU Leuven

Let's no longer treat every ovarian cancer patient the same way

"Each person is unique. So why do we still treat every woman with ovarian cancer the same way?" Liselore Loverix (KU Leuven - FWO) examines patient by patient and looks for errors in the DNA of their tumour cells. In this way, before treatment starts, she identifies which patient would benefit from a new, targeted therapy based on cancer drugs.
KU Leuven

Chronic swallowing problems after head and neck cancer

Thanks to new radiotherapy techniques, more and more patients with head and neck cancer are surviving. But for 70% of them, this radiation causes chronic swallowing problems, making it difficult to eat and drink. Hanne Massonet hopes to help them enjoy food and drink again by training their tongue, mouth, and throat muscles.
KU Leuven

Is the cure for cancer stuck in a jar?

Have you ever tried to get the last cookie from the bottom of the jar but couldn't quite reach it? Now, what if that cookie can potentially help cure cancer? Wiktoria Wojtaczka (KU Leuven) is investigating terbium, a chemical element that can be turned into a drug for cancer. But the problem she faces in her research is pretty similar to that of the cookie stuck in the jar
KU Leuven

Making immunotherapy stand up against colon cancer

Did you know that colon cancer is the third most deadly cancer worldwide? Unfortunately, while immunotherapy is quite effective in the treatment of many cancers, such as skin cancer, it only works in 5% of colon cancer patients. Sara Verbandt (KU Leuven) explains how she wants to make immunotherapy stand up against colon cancer.
KU Leuven

Selecting the proper treatment for cancer patients

Immunotherapy is a very promising therapy for cancer, but only 15 to 30% of the patients respond to this kind of therapy. Giving immunotherapy to patients without knowing whether they will respond is expensive and can even harm them. That's why Madhavi Andhari is looking for markers to tell apart responders from non-responders.

Returning to work after a long-term illness 🎗 🏥 💼

In Belgium, every year more than 25,000 people return to work after cancer treatment. Yet there are many employers who do not know how to react in such a situation. Elise Pattyn (Arteveldehogeschool) and her colleagues are working on tools to make the return to work smoother.

Liver cancer: how do we get the medicines to the tumor?

As if developing a cancer drug is not difficult enough, you still have to successfully get that medicine to the tumor. Tim Bomberna (Ghent University) explains how computer simulations show us the way.

Cracking the genetic code of blood cancer multiple myeloma

Cracking codes, it's a thing in escape rooms. But it is also what Bénedith Oben tries, albeit in the laboratory. In this way, she hopes to find the key to better understand the development of multiple myeloma, a common blood cancer.
Freire Boullosa

Does an old rheumatism pill help against cancer?

It is a relatively new and promising path in cancer research: the reuse of old, non-cancer drugs. In her PhD, Laurie Freire Boullosa focuses on an old rheumatism pill and examines whether it can be used as a weapon against cancer.