Terminology C


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CALYCEAL DIVERTICULUM - Excision of an abnormal out-pouching of the urinary tract.

CANCER - A general term for more than 100 diseases characterized by the abnormal and uncontrolled growth of cells, which may eventually spread to other parts of the body.

CANCER STAGE - A measure that defines the extent of a tumor. Prostate cancer staging is as follows: T1 - tumors diagnosed by PSA elevation or surgery for benign disease. T2 - tumors that are diagnosed by rectal examination. These tumors are believed to be confined to the prostate. T3 - tumors that have extended beyond the prostate capsule at the time of diagnosis. T4 - tumors that have invaded adjacent organs, such as the bladder or rectum.

CAPSULE - A thin layer of tissue that encases the prostate gland.

CATHETER - A thin, flexible tube inserted through the urethra into the bladder to drain urine.

CELL - Any one of the minute protoplasmic masses that make up organized tissue. A cell is the fundamental structural and functional unit of living organisms.

CELL CYCLE  - Reproductive cycle of the cell. The orderly sequence of events by which the cell duplicates its contents and divides into two.

CHEMOTHERAPY - The use of one or more strong drugs to treat or control a cancer.

CHRONIC PYELONEPHRITIS - Chronic kidney infection.

CLINICAL TRIAL - The systematic investigation in human subjects of the safety and effectiveness of a procedure or drug designed to diagnose or treat a specific disease.

CLINICAL TRIAL, PHASE 1 - A clinical trial designed to determine the appropriate dose and toxicities of an investigational agent.

CLINICAL TRIAL, PHASE 2 - A clinical trial designed to determine the effectiveness and side effects of an investigational agent or regimen.

CLINICAL TRIAL, PHASE 3 - A clinical trial designed to test the effectiveness of a given treatment as compared to existing treatments.

COMBINATION THERAPY - The use of two or more modes of treatment (e.g. surgery, radiotherapy, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, immunotherapy) in combination to achieve optimum results against cancer or other disease.

COMBINED ANDROGEN BLOCKADE (CAB) - The treatment of prostate cancer with a combination of medical or surgical castration (suppression of testosterone and related substances) and an antiandrogen.

COMPARATIVE GENOMIC HYBRIDIZATION (CGH) - An experimental technique that uses fluorescent labeling to compare the chromosomal copy number of cancer vs. normal DNA.

COMPUTERIZED TOMOGRAPHY (CT SCAN) - A radiologic imaging study in which cross-sectional images of the body are obtained.

CONTROL GROUP - A group of patients in a clinical trial that receives either a standard treatment or no treatment, that is compared with an experimental group that is receiving a proposed new treatment that might be more effective.

CONTROLS - A standard against which experimental observations may be evaluated, as a procedure identical in all respects to the experimental procedure, except for absence of the one factor that is being studied.

COREGULATOR - Protein that associates with a transcriptional regulator such as androgen receptor, modulating or mediating the transcriptional regulatory activities of the regulator; coregulators do not directly bind to DNA. Examples are p160 family proteins such as GRIP-1.

COSTIMULATION - The requirement of naive T cells for multiple signals to achieve activation: antigen-specific signals mediated by the antigen receptor as well as additional signals unrelated to the antigen. T cells which receive only antigen signals in the absence of costimulation do not become activated, and may become non-responsive.

COSTIMULATORY LIGANDS - Molecules belonging to B7 family that are expressed only on "professional" antigen presenting cells and interact with costimulatory receptors on T cells.

COSTIMULATORY RECEPTORS CD28  - T cell surface molecule that binds to B7 on antigen presenting cell and transmits positive, synergistic signal for T cell activation. CTLA-4: T cell surface molecule that binds to B7 on antigen presenting cells and transmits signals that inhibit T cell activation; serves as attenuator to damp T cell responses.

CRYOABLATION - Freezing the tissue to kill cancer cells.

CRYOSURGERY - A procedure that uses extremely cold liquid nitrogen to destroy cancer cells.