Stratified medicine means looking at large groups of cancer patients to try and find ways of predicting which treatments cancers are likely to respond to. It involves looking in detail at the cancer cells and their genetic make up. Researchers want to find out if some treatments are more likely to work in cancers that have particular changes to their genes.
This is one step towards something called personalised medicine. Personalised medicine uses genetic and other information to diagnose and treat disease. Once we have carried out research with large groups of cancer patients, we may be able to predict response to treatments. Then we hope we will be able to tailor cancer treatment very precisely to an individual person’s cancer.