Guided Treatment in optimal Selected cancer patients - Translational and Clinical research in Oncology (GUTS)

Current classification of cancer is still based largely on the morphology of tumor cells, while current cancer imaging diagnostics are primarily based on visualization of size, shape and a limited set of biomarkers. The identification of more cancer-specific biomarkers in tumors and body fluids, and better visualization will improve the characterization and treatment of cancer.

Our GUTS research programme studies cancer-specific, dynamic, cell-biological changes in tumors and body fluids to improve visualization, detection, classification, characterization and treatment of cancer.

In our research, we combine current and novel state-of-the-art imaging and -omics modalities. We focus on:

  • Acknowledgment and tackling of tumor heterogeneity
  • Cancer-specific, cell-biological changes to identify unique targets for innovative guided therapy
  • Better selection of cancer patients and advancements in early identification of treatment efficacy to be able to adapt treatment to changing tumor characteristics

How our research benefits to society

By studying cancer-specific, dynamic, cell-biological changes in tumors and body fluids, we want to improve cancer diagnosis and treatment outcome by optimizing selection of our cancer patients and the use of personalized, therapeutic strategies.

Based on our research, we improved detection and diagnosis of different types of cancer, and further developed and clinically evaluated cancer treatment of several different tumor types.

In addition, we established a data warehouse with clinical, -omics and imaging data of treated cancer patients for development of deep learning and other AI approaches.

These results helped us to improve personalized treatment of our patients with the fewest possible harmful immediate and late side effects that would hamper quality of life and jeopardize healthy cancer survivorship.​​

  • The department of Medical Oncology of the University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG) hosts a website that provides information on different tumor types, care-related information, standard policy of the department with associated administration schedules, and a broad range of additional information. In addition, an overview of ongoing studies per tumor type for which patients may be eligible.