Parisa Ghahremanifard, a Master of Science student at the University of Calgary is part of a research project hoping to improve the lives of patients with oral cancers, one of the most common cancers of the head and neck region.
“My MSc is in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and I work at Dr. Pinaki Bose’s lab at the Arnie Charbonneau Cancer Institute where I’m currently researching ways to stop oral cancer progression in patients.”
Parisa’s study focuses on cancer immunotherapy. Immunotherapy treatments harness the body’s immune system to attack tumours. A key step involves helping the body’s cancer-fighting T-cells recognize which cells are cancerous.
“Cancerous cells are as smart as we are because we literally share the same DNA. So as we try to find a way to treat patients with chemotherapy or radiation, the cancer cells find a way to fight back and resist the treatment. I think it’s amazing to destroy cancerous cells with the tool that God has given us all, our own immune cells!!”
With the new Calgary Cancer Centre being one of the largest comprehensive cancer centres in North America, it means bringing together researchers, medical teams, prevention experts, patients and families in ways never before possible. Which is an exciting prospect for researchers like Parisa.
“I can’t wait to continue my project in our new lab at the Calgary Cancer Centre. I think it’s a brilliant idea to gather all cancer professionals and patients in one place. I believe if we all work together and look at cancer from different perspectives hopefully with every small step we will finally OWN.CANCER. Even if all this work helps one person enjoy their life a few days more, I believe that it will all be worth it.”
At the new Calgary Cancer Centre, we’re bringing together researchers, medical teams, prevention experts, patients and families in ways never before possible.
You can help clinicians and researchers like Amanda perform world-class cancer research by making a donation to the OWN.CANCER campaign today.