Case Study Jordan Radiotherapy

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Jordan’s case quickly becomes serious when his symptoms are investigated and his health concerns become a matter of life and death. The first few symptoms Jordan experienced were relatively minor such as nausea and feeling tired, but they soon developed into vision problems and a constant headache. At this point he decided to seek medical help and many test, such as a blood test, CT scan and eventually a MRI, were run to diagnose Jordan. His initial symptoms could have been diabetes or head trauma, but the blood test was negative and the CT scan was inconclusive. Unfortunately, the MRI showed that Jordan had a brain tumor. At this point there were still many possibilities for the type of brain tumor, but it was soon discovered that he has …show more content…
Radiotherapy is the use of radiation on the body in order to damage cancer cells (5). Jordan then underwent adjuvant chemotherapy and radiotherapy in hope of removing cancer cells still present in his body. Adjuvant chemotherapy is used after other treatment options have been exhausted and is meant to destroy metastasized cancer cells that were unable to be removed in surgery (4). One of the specific drugs that Jordan was prescribed was temozolomide, which is meant to damage actively dividing cells. This drug has varied affects on patients and is dependent on the patient’s epigenetics. The survival rates for patients with this treatment were reported to be a median survival of 14.6 months and a two-year survival rate of 30% (3). Specifically, the methylation or lack of methylation of the MGMT gene can have an extreme effect on the effectiveness of the drug. A person’s epigenome is a layer of chemicals on top of his or her genes that has the power to inactivate genes and make them unreadable or activate genes and make them easily accessible. Each individual’s epigenome become unique as it changes over time due to factors such as diet, stress, physical activity, and toxin exposure. The MGMT gene can be activated or inactivated by epigenetics. This gene is located on the chromosome 10q26 and encodes for a DNA repair enzyme (6). If this gene is left unmethylated, it is active and is able to repair damaged cells. This function is counterproductive during chemotherapy with the use of temozolamide because the drug damages the DNA and tries to kill cancer cells, but the MGMT works to repair these unwanted cells. Individuals with inactivated MGMT genes have been methylated. Methylated MGMT has a more favorable response to chemotherapy because the tumor has no means to repair the induced damage. Unfortunately for Jordan, he has unmethylated MGMT genes, but it is still best for him to receive

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