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Virtual tumour provides a new way to see cancer

27/12/2018

Virtual tumour provides a new way to see cancer

To help boost our understanding of cancer and help in the search for new treatments, scientists in Cambridge, UK have built a Virtual Reality (VR) 3D model of a tumour.


The ‘virtual tumour’, which was created using a real tumour sample extracted from a patient, can be studied in detail from all angles, allowing its individual cells to be explored. And despite the fact the human tissue sample was only about the size of a pinhead, within the virtual laboratory it can be enlarged to appear several metres across.


Forming part of an international research scheme, the 3D tumour model is the product of a £40 million grant awarded to the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre by Cancer Research UK last year.


Multiple users from anywhere in the world can take advantage of the VR system simultaneously and fly through the tumour cells to afford a much more in-depth understanding of them.


Talking to the BBC, Prof Greg Hannon, director of Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute (part of the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Centre), said: “No-one has examined the geography of a tumour in this level of detail before; it is a new way of looking at cancer.”


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