Pathology is a branch of medical science primarily concerning the cause, origin, and nature of disease. It involves the examination of tissues, organs, bodily fluids, and autopsies in order to study and diagnose disease. In Kiara’s case, they sent her brain tumor to the pathology lab, where they run tests to determine the type of tumor and the grade. Biochemists or chemical pathologists examine different substances found in the tumor that can help understand its origin and behavior, so that doctors know how to treat it. Pathologists may also study the molecular and genetic profiles of a tumor to determine different tumor subtypes. Neuro-oncologists may use the genetic studies to inhibit the growth or recurrence of a tumor. In Kiara’s case, I’m interested in learning more about BRAF status in pilocytic astrocytomas, which understanding is way above my pay grade right now, but keeping it in my back pocket for future discussions with her oncologist.