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This Sandwich Predicts Your Risk of Cancer – And Here Is What We Can Learn From It

What would you say if I told you that a bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich with a kosher pickle increases cancer risk dramatically? Would you believe me? Actually, BLT with a kosher pickle is a mnemonic I learned in my medical training to help remember the types of cancers which have a predisposition to metastasize (spread) to bone: Breast Lung Thyroid Kidney Prostate However, I believe we can learn a lot from this sandwich about cancer risk and progression in … Read More

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An oncologist-in-training thinks cancer is “natural.” Do you agree?

I just came across an editorial (https://www.statnews.com/2017/08/29/cancer-treatment-alternative-medicine/) by an oncologist-in-training who stated rather confidently that cancer is “natural.” He gives the example of a woman who rejected conventional treatments completely, and instead opted to go to Mexico for a strictly alternative approach. In his attempt to discount “natural” treatments, he made a statement which shocked me: “The truth is, cancer is all natural. While some are caused by smoking or chemical exposures, most of them are sporadic, meaning they aren’t … Read More

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Does Alternative Medicine Impact Cancer Survival?

A study ( link: https://academic.oup.com ) just released set out to examine the effectiveness of alternative cancer treatments. Published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI), this study followed 281 patients with non-metastatic cancer of the breast, colon, lung, or prostate who chose alternative cancer treatments alone (i.e., they refused conventional therapies such as surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and/or hormone therapy). The study found that this approach resulted in a greater risk of death. When reading a study, it is … Read More

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New Study Proves Chemotherapy Spreads Cancer…Or Does It?

A study(1) released earlier this month has been making its rounds on the internet, and has quickly become a hot topic on social media. I have seen some sensational headlines stating that this study “proves that chemotherapy spreads cancer” and “is the death blow to chemotherapy.” Statements such as these are typically the hallmark of an agenda-driven view, a poor understanding of science, or a combination of both. This study in question was performed on cells in the laboratory, and … Read More

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Bacteriophages: What Are They And What Can They Do?

Viruses that specifically kill bacteria, called bacteriophages, might one day help solve the growing problem of bacterial infections that are resistant to antibiotic treatment. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center have determined that phages can effectively reduce bacterial levels and improve the health of mice that are infected with deadly, antibiotic-resistant bacterial ‘superbugs.’ The study appears in Scientific Reports. read more Dr. Stegall’s Comments: Bacterial infections are becoming much more common, … Read More

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Targeting Circulating Tumor Cells In Cancer Treatment

Cancerous tumors are formidable enemies, recruiting blood vessels to aid their voracious growth, damaging nearby tissues, and deploying numerous strategies to evade the body’s defense systems. But even more malicious are the circulating tumor cells (CTCs) that tumors release, which travel stealthily through the bloodstream and take up residence in other parts of the body, a process known as metastasis. While dangerous, their presence is also a valuable indicator of the stage of a patient’s disease, making CTCs an attractive … Read More

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A Personal Experience With Immunotherapy Cancer Treatment

Michael D. Becker, a former biotech executive, knows a lot about cancer drug development. In 2015, he was diagnosed with head and neck cancer, which was caused by human papillomavirus (or HPV), a sexually transmitted infection. After the diagnosis, Becker — who detailed his experience in “A Walk With Purpose: Memoir of a Bioentrepreneur” — used his expertise in the drug industry to consider possible treatment options. One he was enthusiastic about? Cancer immunotherapy. read more Dr. Stegall’s Comments: I share this … Read More

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Vitamins & Bioactives: How Much Is Too Much

Research has shown the potential health benefits of bioactive nutrients — those compounds found in foods like fruits, vegetables, tea, and cocoa. And consumers are showing an increased interest in learning more. But can there be too much of a good thing? John Erdman, a professor emeritus in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois, and his lab have studied bioactives and their health benefits for years. Now, Erdman and a team of other … Read More

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Chocolate Improves Cognitive Performance

In their recent review published in Frontiers in Nutrition, Italian researchers examined the available literature for the effects of acute and chronic administration of cocoa flavanols on different cognitive domains. In other words: what happens to your brain up to a few hours after you eat cocoa flavanols, and what happens when you sustain such a cocoa flavanol enriched diet for a prolonged period of time? Although randomized controlled trials investigating the acute effect of cocoa flavanols are sparse, most … Read More

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Soy Consumption And Breast Cancer

Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers have used animal models to reveal new information about the impact — positive and negative — that soy consumption could have on a common breast cancer treatment. The scientists have uncovered the biological pathways in rats by which longtime soy consumption improves effectiveness of tamoxifen and reduces breast cancer recurrence. But they also show why eating or drinking soy-based foods for the first time while being treated with tamoxifen can, conversely, reduce effectiveness of … Read More

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Gaps In Preventing Skin Cancer Found

A large international survey on sun exposure behaviors and skin cancer detection found there are many imperfections and geographical inequalities in primary and secondary prevention of skin cancer. This information could help inform future awareness campaigns developed to address the global need to reduce mid- and long-term development of skin cancer. The study was published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology & Venereology by researchers from La Roche-Posay and the George Washington University (GW) Department of Dermatology. … Read More

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Some Breast Cancer Risk Factors To Consider

In her recent doctoral dissertation, researcher Sanna Heikkinen from the University of Helsinki and Finnish Cancer Registry evaluates the contribution of the use of hormonal contraceptives and hair dyes to the spectrum of breast cancer risk factors. The analysis included self-reported survey data from 8000 breast cancer patients and 20,000 controls from Finland. According to the results, use of hormonal intrauterine device was associated with 52% increased risk of breast cancer in post-menopausal women, when compared to women who had … Read More

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Possible Increased Risk For Bladder Cancer When Working Around Pool Chemicals

Whether water is hot in a tub or cold in a pool, it can bring immediate relief from stress or summer heat. But hot tubs and swimming pools are not always as clean as you might think, even when disinfected. In a new study in ACS’ Environmental Science & Technology, scientists have found that the more these facilities are used, the more potentially harmful compounds they contain. Disinfectants such as chlorine kill pathogens in hot tubs and swimming pools, whether … Read More

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This Sandwich Predicts Your Risk of Cancer – And Here Is What We Can Learn From It

What would you say if I told you that a bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich with a kosher pickle increases cancer risk dramatically? Would you believe me? Actually, BLT with a kosher pickle is a mnemonic I learned in my medical training to help remember the types of cancers which have a predisposition to metastasize (spread) to bone: Breast Lung Thyroid Kidney Prostate However, I believe we can learn a lot from this sandwich about cancer risk and progression in … Read More

View Post

Vitamins & Bioactives: How Much Is Too Much

Research has shown the potential health benefits of bioactive nutrients — those compounds found in foods like fruits, vegetables, tea, and cocoa. And consumers are showing an increased interest in learning more. But can there be too much of a good thing? John Erdman, a professor emeritus in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois, and his lab have studied bioactives and their health benefits for years. Now, Erdman and a team of other … Read More

View Post

Chocolate Improves Cognitive Performance

In their recent review published in Frontiers in Nutrition, Italian researchers examined the available literature for the effects of acute and chronic administration of cocoa flavanols on different cognitive domains. In other words: what happens to your brain up to a few hours after you eat cocoa flavanols, and what happens when you sustain such a cocoa flavanol enriched diet for a prolonged period of time? Although randomized controlled trials investigating the acute effect of cocoa flavanols are sparse, most … Read More

View Post

Soy Consumption And Breast Cancer

Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers have used animal models to reveal new information about the impact — positive and negative — that soy consumption could have on a common breast cancer treatment. The scientists have uncovered the biological pathways in rats by which longtime soy consumption improves effectiveness of tamoxifen and reduces breast cancer recurrence. But they also show why eating or drinking soy-based foods for the first time while being treated with tamoxifen can, conversely, reduce effectiveness of … Read More

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A High-Fat Diet Linked To Colon Cancer

Poor diet is associated with 80% of colorectal cancer cases, but the exact pathways by which diet leads to cancer are not known. In a newly published study, Cleveland Clinic researchers have identified a specific molecular pathway that plays a key role in the link between a high-fat diet and tumor growth in the colon. In the July 6 issue of Stem Cell Reports, the team showed in pre-clinical models that cancer stem cell growth in the colon was enhanced … Read More

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The Link Between A High-Fat Diet And Breast Cancer

Feeding pregnant female mice a diet high in fat derived from common corn oil resulted in genetic changes that substantially increased breast cancer susceptibility in three generations of female offspring, reports a team of researchers led by scientists at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. Their study, published online today in Breast Cancer Research, suggests a research direction for examining the diet of pregnant women, says the study’s senior author, Leena Hilakivi-Clarke, PhD, professor of oncology at Georgetown Lombardi. “It is … Read More

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How Could Onions Affect Colon Cancer?

In the first study to examine how effective Ontario-grown onions are at killing cancer cells, U of G researchers have found that not all onions are created equal. Engineering professor Suresh Neethirajan and PhD student Abdulmonem Murayyan tested five onion types grown in Ontario and discovered the Ruby Ring onion variety came out on top. Onions as a superfood are still not well known. But they contain one of the highest concentrations of quercetin, a type of flavonoid, and Ontario … Read More

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What Do Apple Peels, Red Grapes and Tumeric Have To Do With Prostate Cancer?

New research from The University of Texas at Austin identifies several natural compounds found in food, including turmeric, apple peels and red grapes, as key ingredients that could thwart the growth of prostate cancer, the most common cancer afflicting U.S. men. Published online this week in Precision Oncology, the new paper uses a novel analytical approach to screen numerous plant-based chemicals instead of testing a single agent as many studies do, discovering specific combinations that shrink prostate cancer tumors. “After … Read More

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Study Suggests Unhealthy Food Choices Increase Breast Cancer Risk

French authorities are considering the implementation of a simplified nutrition labelling system on food products to help consumers make healthier food choices. One of the most documented candidates (Five-Color Nutrition Label/Nutri-score) is based on the British Food Standards Agency Nutrient Profiling System (FSA-NPS), a score calculated for each food/beverage using the 100 g amount of energy, sugar, saturated fatty acid, sodium, fibers, proteins, and fruits and vegetables. To assess its potential public health relevance, studies were conducted on the association … Read More

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6 Foods You Need To Eat If You Have Liver Cancer

Spermidine — a compound found in foods like aged cheese, mushrooms, soy products, legumes, corn and whole grains — seems to prevent (at least in animal models) liver fibrosis and hepatocellular carcinoma, which is the most common type of liver cancer. There is also some evidence that it may prolong lifespan, according to a study published recently in the journal Cancer Research. Researchers gave animal models an oral supplement of spermidine and found that they lived longer and were less … Read More

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A High-Fat Diet Linked To Colon Cancer

Poor diet is associated with 80% of colorectal cancer cases, but the exact pathways by which diet leads to cancer are not known. In a newly published study, Cleveland Clinic researchers have identified a specific molecular pathway that plays a key role in the link between a high-fat diet and tumor growth in the colon. In the July 6 issue of Stem Cell Reports, the team showed in pre-clinical models that cancer stem cell growth in the colon was enhanced … Read More

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Could Olive Oil Help To Prevent Brain Cancer?

A compound found in olive oil may help to prevent cancer developing in the brain, a study shows. Research into oleic acid — the primary ingredient in olive oil — has shown how it can help prevent cancer-causing genes from functioning in cells. The oily substance — one of a group of nutrients known as fatty acids — stimulates the production of a cell molecule whose function is to prevent cancer-causing proteins from forming. The study team says it is … Read More

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Gut Bacteria and the Brain’s Blood Vessels

A study in mice and humans suggests that bacteria in the gut can influence the structure of the brain’s blood vessels, and may be responsible for producing malformations that can lead to stroke or epilepsy. The research, published in Nature, adds to an emerging picture that connects intestinal microbes and disorders of the nervous system. The study was funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Cerebral cavernous … Read More

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How Stimulating Your Brain Affects Mental Health In Older Age

The large-scale investigation published in the journal PLOS Medicine and led by the University of Exeter, used data from more than 2,000 mentally fit people over the age of 65, examined the theory that experiences in early or mid life which challenge the brain make people more resilient to changes resulting from age or illness — they have higher “cognitive reserve.” The analysis, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) found that people with higher levels of reserve … Read More

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Gaps In Preventing Skin Cancer Found

A large international survey on sun exposure behaviors and skin cancer detection found there are many imperfections and geographical inequalities in primary and secondary prevention of skin cancer. This information could help inform future awareness campaigns developed to address the global need to reduce mid- and long-term development of skin cancer. The study was published in the Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology & Venereology by researchers from La Roche-Posay and the George Washington University (GW) Department of Dermatology. … Read More

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There are 2 types of cancer vaccines: Prevention vaccines and Treatment vaccines

Vaccines, also called vaccinations, are medicines that help the body fight disease. They help train the immune system to recognize and destroy harmful substances. There are 2 types of cancer vaccines: Prevention vaccines Treatment vaccines Cancer prevention vaccines Doctors give prevention vaccines to healthy people to keep certain cancers from developing. Like vaccines for the chicken pox or the flu, they protect the body from viruses that can cause disease. A person has to get the vaccine before the virus … Read More

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Cancer signs and early detection

15 Cancer Symptoms Women Shouldn’t Ignore Women’s bodies are always changing. Sometimes changes that seem normal can be signs of cancer, though. The key is to pay attention to your body so you can notice when something’s different, says Robyn Andersen, PhD, of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle. “New symptoms indicate something has changed in your body, and you want to know what that means.” read more Dr. Stegall’s Comments: The overall theme here is to have … Read More

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New technologies leading to a simple blood test for cancer

Fast DNA-sequencing machines are leading to simple blood tests for cancer. Labs around the world are working toward developing cancer screening tests based on a simple blood draw. That’s possible because dying cancer cells also shed DNA into a person’s blood. Early on, the amount is vanishingly small—and obscured by the healthy DNA that also circulates. That makes it difficult to measure. But Lo says the objective is simple: an annual blood test that finds cancer while it’s curable. Cancers … Read More

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Does Alternative Medicine Impact Cancer Survival?

A study ( link: https://academic.oup.com ) just released set out to examine the effectiveness of alternative cancer treatments. Published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (JNCI), this study followed 281 patients with non-metastatic cancer of the breast, colon, lung, or prostate who chose alternative cancer treatments alone (i.e., they refused conventional therapies such as surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, and/or hormone therapy). The study found that this approach resulted in a greater risk of death. When reading a study, it is … Read More

View Post

New Study Proves Chemotherapy Spreads Cancer…Or Does It?

A study(1) released earlier this month has been making its rounds on the internet, and has quickly become a hot topic on social media. I have seen some sensational headlines stating that this study “proves that chemotherapy spreads cancer” and “is the death blow to chemotherapy.” Statements such as these are typically the hallmark of an agenda-driven view, a poor understanding of science, or a combination of both. This study in question was performed on cells in the laboratory, and … Read More

View Post

Bacteriophages: What Are They And What Can They Do?

Viruses that specifically kill bacteria, called bacteriophages, might one day help solve the growing problem of bacterial infections that are resistant to antibiotic treatment. Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and the Michael E. DeBakey Veterans Affairs Medical Center have determined that phages can effectively reduce bacterial levels and improve the health of mice that are infected with deadly, antibiotic-resistant bacterial ‘superbugs.’ The study appears in Scientific Reports. read more Dr. Stegall’s Comments: Bacterial infections are becoming much more common, … Read More

View Post

A High-Fat Diet Linked To Colon Cancer

Poor diet is associated with 80% of colorectal cancer cases, but the exact pathways by which diet leads to cancer are not known. In a newly published study, Cleveland Clinic researchers have identified a specific molecular pathway that plays a key role in the link between a high-fat diet and tumor growth in the colon. In the July 6 issue of Stem Cell Reports, the team showed in pre-clinical models that cancer stem cell growth in the colon was enhanced … Read More

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Cancer Cells Light Up With Fluorescent Probe

What if you could plaster cancer cells with glowing “Here We Are” signs, so surgeons could be confident that they’d removed every last speck of a tumor? That’s what Haiying Liu has in mind for his new fluorescent probe. “Doctors need to pinpoint cancer tissue, but that can be hard,” said Liu, a chemistry professor at Michigan Technological University. Test-tube cancer antibodies coupled with special enzymes have been used to highlight malignancies during surgery, since they bind to tumor cells, … Read More

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The Link Between A High-Fat Diet And Breast Cancer

Feeding pregnant female mice a diet high in fat derived from common corn oil resulted in genetic changes that substantially increased breast cancer susceptibility in three generations of female offspring, reports a team of researchers led by scientists at Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center. Their study, published online today in Breast Cancer Research, suggests a research direction for examining the diet of pregnant women, says the study’s senior author, Leena Hilakivi-Clarke, PhD, professor of oncology at Georgetown Lombardi. “It is … Read More

View Post

How Could Onions Affect Colon Cancer?

In the first study to examine how effective Ontario-grown onions are at killing cancer cells, U of G researchers have found that not all onions are created equal. Engineering professor Suresh Neethirajan and PhD student Abdulmonem Murayyan tested five onion types grown in Ontario and discovered the Ruby Ring onion variety came out on top. Onions as a superfood are still not well known. But they contain one of the highest concentrations of quercetin, a type of flavonoid, and Ontario … Read More

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Breast Cancer Study Update

The study questions whether reliance on insufficiently-validated antibodies has led science down a dead-end path since the discovery of estrogen receptor beta (ESR2) in the 1990s. Cecilia Williams, a researcher at KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and the joint research center, Science for Life Laboratory (SciLifeLab), says the beta receptor’s discovery changed our understanding of estrogen signaling. It also raised hopes for a new endocrine treatment to complement the success of estrogen-blocking drugs such as Tamoxifen. These therapies … Read More

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Highly Relevant Discovery In Prostate Cancer

Uncontrolled activity of male hormones, called androgens, contributes to the development of prostate cancer. One of the primary ways doctors treat prostate cancer is by inhibiting the activity of androgens by either surgically removing the testicles or with drugs that decrease androgen levels or activity. Unfortunately, even though most patients have early success with anti-androgen treatments, many patients eventually develop metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer within two to three years. Castration-resistant prostate cancer is more difficult to treat and cure because … Read More

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Sequencing of Tumors Explored

The study suggests the value of so-called next generation sequencing, a sophisticated method of evaluating the DNA and RNA of a tumor to help direct treatment. A report on the first 500 patients with advanced solid tumors to go through the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center’s sequencing program found that 72 percent qualified for a clinical trial based on a genetic marker in their tumor. While not all of those patients were able to enroll in a trial based … Read More

See All Cancer Research Posts
View Post

New Study Proves Chemotherapy Spreads Cancer…Or Does It?

A study(1) released earlier this month has been making its rounds on the internet, and has quickly become a hot topic on social media. I have seen some sensational headlines stating that this study “proves that chemotherapy spreads cancer” and “is the death blow to chemotherapy.” Statements such as these are typically the hallmark of an agenda-driven view, a poor understanding of science, or a combination of both. This study in question was performed on cells in the laboratory, and … Read More

View Post

Targeting Circulating Tumor Cells In Cancer Treatment

Cancerous tumors are formidable enemies, recruiting blood vessels to aid their voracious growth, damaging nearby tissues, and deploying numerous strategies to evade the body’s defense systems. But even more malicious are the circulating tumor cells (CTCs) that tumors release, which travel stealthily through the bloodstream and take up residence in other parts of the body, a process known as metastasis. While dangerous, their presence is also a valuable indicator of the stage of a patient’s disease, making CTCs an attractive … Read More

View Post

A Personal Experience With Immunotherapy Cancer Treatment

Michael D. Becker, a former biotech executive, knows a lot about cancer drug development. In 2015, he was diagnosed with head and neck cancer, which was caused by human papillomavirus (or HPV), a sexually transmitted infection. After the diagnosis, Becker — who detailed his experience in “A Walk With Purpose: Memoir of a Bioentrepreneur” — used his expertise in the drug industry to consider possible treatment options. One he was enthusiastic about? Cancer immunotherapy. read more Dr. Stegall’s Comments: I share this … Read More

View Post

How Could Onions Affect Colon Cancer?

In the first study to examine how effective Ontario-grown onions are at killing cancer cells, U of G researchers have found that not all onions are created equal. Engineering professor Suresh Neethirajan and PhD student Abdulmonem Murayyan tested five onion types grown in Ontario and discovered the Ruby Ring onion variety came out on top. Onions as a superfood are still not well known. But they contain one of the highest concentrations of quercetin, a type of flavonoid, and Ontario … Read More

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Allergens Affected By Cancer Drug For Lymphocytic Leukemia

The cancer patients who were allergic to allergens such as cat dander and ragweed saw their allergic skin test reactivity reduced by 80 to 90 percent in one week, and this persisted with continued use of the drug for at least one to two months. The findings were published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology in May. “It almost completely knocked out the patients’ skin test and blood cell allergic reactivity,” said senior author Dr. Bruce Bochner, the … Read More

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Highly Relevant Discovery In Prostate Cancer

Uncontrolled activity of male hormones, called androgens, contributes to the development of prostate cancer. One of the primary ways doctors treat prostate cancer is by inhibiting the activity of androgens by either surgically removing the testicles or with drugs that decrease androgen levels or activity. Unfortunately, even though most patients have early success with anti-androgen treatments, many patients eventually develop metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer within two to three years. Castration-resistant prostate cancer is more difficult to treat and cure because … Read More

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Unique Way To Provide Cancer Treatment To Children

Although cancer is rare in children, worldwide there are approximately 215,000 new cases in the under 15s each year. Around a sixth of these children require treatment with radiotherapy, including those with brain tumours, and bone and soft tissue sarcomas such as Ewing sarcoma and rhabdomyosarcoma. Catia Aguas, a radiation therapist and dosimetrist at the Cliniques Universitaires Saint Luc, Brussels, Belgium, told the conference that using video instead of general anaesthesia is less traumatic for children and their families, as … Read More

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Sequencing of Tumors Explored

The study suggests the value of so-called next generation sequencing, a sophisticated method of evaluating the DNA and RNA of a tumor to help direct treatment. A report on the first 500 patients with advanced solid tumors to go through the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center’s sequencing program found that 72 percent qualified for a clinical trial based on a genetic marker in their tumor. While not all of those patients were able to enroll in a trial based … Read More

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New Research Looks At Combination Cancer Therapy

UTMB professor Satish Srivastava said that combining a newly-developed drug with a drug used to fight numerous kinds of cancers makes it better suited as a colon cancer treatment. The widely-used drug, doxorubicin, is effective in fighting cancer but can be toxic to the heart when higher doses are needed. The research, Srivastava said, shows that using aldose reductase, an enzyme, when used with doxorubicin, reduces the toxins that can damage the heart. The researchers have shown earlier that exposure … Read More

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Read How Electronics Can Help Cancer Treatment

Symptoms are common among patients receiving treatment for advanced cancers, yet are undetected by clinicians up to half the time. There is growing interest in integrating electronic patient-reported outcomes (PROs) into routine oncology practice for symptom monitoring, but evidence demonstrating clinical benefit has been limited. Ethan Basch, M.D., of the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and Associate Editor, JAMA, and colleagues assessed overall survival associated with electronic patient-reported symptom monitoring vs usual care based on … Read More

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