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'Unlocking Prostate Cancer' wins the OMSRS writing prize

Thursday, 25 September 2014 1:48pm

Chris Harris, a master's student in the Cancer Genetics Laboratory within CTCR, has won the Otago Medical School Research Society's prize for writing. 

His essay titled 'Unlocking Prostate Cancer' explains that 90% of men diagnosed with prostate cancer undergo treatment with horrid side effects when, in actual fact, only 3% require vigorous treatment.

The master's project upon which Chris is working aims to take a direct approach. This is no easy task and is best described by Chris himself: "Our method is roughly the equivalent of detecting a sprinkling of less than a pinch of salt in an Olympic-size swimming pool, then figuring out what kind of salt it is and where it came from."

By analyzing individual prostate cancer cells exfoliated in the urine, the project aims to find a genetic signature to identify the 3% of men who do require the aggressive treatment, saving the other 87% from side effects such as urinary problems and erectile dysfunction.

You can read the whole essay via the ODT website

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