Ovia Margaret
KU Leuven

HER2 breast cancer: comprehend to conquer it!

Did you know that breast cancer is the second most common cancer for women, affecting 1.7 million women worldwide? In her research Ovia Margaret Thirukkumaran is trying to decipher how cancer cells communicate and develop resistance against drugs in so called HER 2 breast cancer, a very aggressive form of breast cancer.
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.
KU Leuven

Organ transplants: life-saving, yet sometimes lethal

While an organ transplant will often save the life of a patient, it also leads to a higher risk of developing cancer. Nena Testelmans (KU Leuven) is determined to help unravel why transplants might induce cancer in patients.
KU Leuven

Do you sit on your toilet seat all day?

Imagine having to visit the toilet 30 times a day for 'number two'. That's not possible, right? Unfortunately, it's the reality for a lot of patients with rectal cancer who've had rectal surgery. Anne Asnong tries to help these people so that they no longer have to spend their life 'chained' to the toilet seat. 🚽
KU Leuven

Does the electronic cigarette help to quit smoking?

Quitting smoking is quite a challenge. In her PhD, Karolien Adriaens (KU Leuven) shows that the e-cigarette is an effective tool to help smokers eventually get rid of their addiction.
KU Leuven

Chemo also affects the brain

Chemotherapy affects the brains of patients. It can lead to cognitive complaints, stress, and fatigue. Michelle Melis achieves promising results with mindfulness in patients with breast cancer. 
KU Leuven

Analysis of tumours, cell by cell

What is the link between a smoothie and the analysis of cancer tumours? Well, Sebastiaan Vanuytven explains it smooth(l)y in this video
Vara Perez
KU Leuven

Understanding the self-cannibalism instincts of melanoma

Melanoma is a very common and lethal type of skin cancer. Melanoma cells have a strange, yet effective defence mechanism called autophagy: they can manage to survive by eating parts of themselves. Monica Vara Perez tries to figure out this self-cannibalism mechanism in order to help defeat melanoma.