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Cancer Glossary - K

Kaposi's sarcoma  (KAP-o-seez sar-KO-ma)
A type of cancer characterized by the abnormal growth of blood vessels that develop into skin lesions or occur internally.
karenitecin  
A drug being studied in the treatment of cancer. It belongs to a family of drugs called topoisomerase inhibitors. It is related to the anticancer drug camptothecin.
Karnofsky Performance Status  
KPS. A standard way of measuring the ability of cancer patients to perform ordinary tasks. The scores range from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating a better ability to carry out daily activities. KPS may be used to determine a patient's prognosis, to measure changes in functioning, or to decide if a patient could be included in a clinical trial.
keloid  (KEY-loyd)
A thick, irregular scar caused by excessive tissue growth at the site of an incision or wound.
keratan sulfate  
A glycosaminoglycan (a type of polysaccharide) found in cartilage and in the cornea of the eye.
keratinocyte growth factor  
A substance that stimulates the growth of epithelial cells that line the surface of the mouth and intestinal tract.
keratoacanthoma  (KER-a-toe-AK-an-THOW-ma)
A benign (noncancerous), rapidly growing skin tumor that usually occurs on sun-exposed areas of the skin and that can go away without treatment.
ketoconazole  
A drug that treats infection caused by a fungus. It is also used as a treatment for prostate cancer because it can block the production of male sex hormones.
ketorolac  
A drug that belongs to a family of drugs called nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents. It is being studied in cancer prevention.
keyhole limpet hemocyanin  
KLH. One of a group of drugs called immune modulators, given as a vaccine to help the body respond to cancer.
kidneys  (KID-neez)
A pair of organs in the abdomen that remove waste from the blood (as urine), produce erythropoietin (a substance that stimulates red blood cell production), and play a role in blood pressure regulation.
killer cells  
White blood cells that attack tumor cells and body cells that have been invaded by foreign substances.
kilogram  
A measure of weight. A kilogram is equal to 2.2 pounds.
Klebsiella  
A bacteria that frequently causes lung, urinary tract, intestinal, and wound infections.
KPS  
Karnofsky Performance Status. A standard way of measuring the ability of cancer patients to perform ordinary tasks. The scores range from 0 to 100, with a higher score indicating a better ability to carry out daily activities. KPS may be used to determine a patient's prognosis, to measure changes in functioning, or to decide if a patient could be included in a clinical trial.
KRN5500  
An anticancer drug that belongs to a family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics. It is an anthracycline.
KRN7000  
A drug being studied in the treatment of cancer. It is a biological response modifier that belongs to the family of drugs called glycosphingolipids or agelasphins.
Krukenberg tumor  (KROO-ken-berg TOO-mer)
A tumor in the ovary caused by the spread of stomach cancer.
KW2189  
A semisynthetic anticancer drug that belongs to the family of drugs called antitumor antibiotics.

 

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