Faculty of Medicine UGM plans to collect data on cancer genome in Indonesia to help better address cancer disease. The genomic and genetic data of the patients of cancer will involve doctors, paramedics, and researchers from other universities. “UGM will collect genomic data of cancer based on the Indonesian population,” UGM expert in cancer, Prof. Dr. Sofia Mubarika, Ph.D., told journalists during winter course training for cancer treatment that is joined by up to 50 researchers and medical students from Indonesia, Malaysia, Japan and Thailand at Faculty of Medicine UGM on Monday (26/1).
Sofia Mubarika said the genomic data collection in Indonesia would be helpful for cancer treatment. The genetic based detection has a great role to identify the cause of the disease and body genetic responses to medication and therapy to be given. “An individual can be responsive to certain medication due to their genetic element so they can have best treatment which is efficient for medication. If unresponsive, the medication is not given,” she said.
The Faculty of Medicine will later set up a a cancer consortium by building a network with universities. “UGM is preparing a research of excellence in cancer, which includes cancer genome, which will be useful for cancer treatment in the country,” she said. They will also collaborate with the national health insurance agency, BPJS, and Health Ministry.
dr. Susanna Hilda Hutajulu, Ph.D., another researcher from UGM, said not all cancer treatment can be given chemotherapies. Over 80% of patients of breast cancer, however, received chemotherapy because they were already in stadium 4 when they went to the hospital.
UGM/RS Sardjito pediatrician, dr. Sri Mulatsih, Ph.D., Sp.A., said the number of children having cancer at the Sardjito Hospital increased each year from between 50-60 cases in the past to 130 cases with 35 percent having leukimia. In her opinion, the increasing new cases was because of the guarantee from the BPJS which made dr Sardjito Hospital receiving referrals from clinics and hospitals in Java and outside Java. “Before the BPJS, there were 50-60 new cases, now increasing to 130,” she said.
As is known, most of cancer cases emerge from genetic factors and unhealthy lifestyle. Health Ministry data in 2015 showed over 30 percent of mortality due to cancer are caused by five risk factors in behaviour and diet, which are high body mass index, lack of fruit and vegetable consumption, lack of physical activities, excessive smoking and alcohol. In 2012 there were 8.2 million of mortality due to cancer. Each year, the highest cause for fatalities are breast cancer, nasopharynx, lungs, heart, colorectal, cervix and leukimia. In children, neuroblastoma cancer and wilms tumor still cause high mortality and morbidity.