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Mathematics might be the only hope we have in fighting cancer

UREPORT
By Purity Ngina | August 9th 2019

The physiological processes underlying cancer seem to be very complicated, not even the best oncologist have managed to figure it out.

The fact that there is an increase in the number of cancer patients in Kenya underscores the need for adequate strategies to cope with this deadly disease and to achieve the big four agenda. Many theories attempt to explain the leading cause of cancer, starting from genetics to environmental exposure and occupational risk factors.

In all these case, chemotherapy remains the most preferred form of treatment. Currently, many patients succumb to the illness even after going through chemotherapy. The government of Kenya has been at the forefront of fighting cancer; this is by ensuring that patients can use NHIF for treatment and also by having Health as one of the Big Four Agenda.

However, due to the complexity of the disease, so much is required from them. The government needs to increase funding to researchers, especially in the area of Mathematical modeling (Bio-Mathematics).

Through mathematical modeling, it is easier to understand the pathophysiology of cancer, its progression, drug resistance, the toxicity of the drugs, the optimal drug dosage, and relapse which seem to be the main challenge.

Mathematical models would assist the oncologist/biologist and clinicians with the tools that would probably address some of the already identified gaps and challenges and assist in improving the existing treatment strategies or in stimulating the development of new ones.

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