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Newswise - News for Journalists

Newswise Special Wire
Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Public edition |

Newswise Cancer Research Wire for 10-Feb-2015

Cancer Research Wire

Cancer research news for the public and news media. More stories can be found at the Newswise Cancer News Source.

More Targeted Pre-Surgery Radiation Significantly Reduces Long Term Negative Impact in Certain Cancers

Using advanced imaging technology to more precisely target radiation beams to treat soft tissue cancers (sarcomas) in the extremities significantly reduces long term side effects without effecting survival rates, according to research results published online today in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Journal of Clinical Oncology

– Rush University Medical Center

UCSF-Led Study Shows Why Some Targeted Cancer Drugs Lose Effectiveness

A protein called YAP, which drives the growth of organs during development and regulates their size in adulthood, plays a key role in the emergence of resistance to targeted cancer therapies, according to a new study led by UC San Francisco researchers.

(Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 11:00 ET)

Nature Genetics, Feb. 9, 2015

– University of California, San Francisco (UCSF)

Study Identifies Eight Signs Associated with Impending Death in Cancer Patients

Researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center have identified eight highly specific physical and cognitive signs associated with imminent death in cancer patients. The findings, published in the journal Cancer, could offer clinicians the ability to better communicate with patients and families. They may also guide both the medical team and caregivers on complex decision making, such as discontinuation of tests and therapy, plans for hospital discharge and hospice referral.

 • Image(s) embedded •  (Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 00:00 ET)


– University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

What Autism Can Teach Us About Brain Cancer

Applying lessons learned from autism to brain cancer, researchers have discovered why elevated levels of the protein NHE9 add to the lethality of the most common and aggressive form of brain cancer, glioblastoma. Their discovery suggests that drugs designed to target NHE9 could help to successfully fight the deadly disease.

 • Image(s) embedded •  (Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 05:00 ET)

Nature Communications, Feb-2015; NS070024; DK054214; GM62142; 11POST7380034

– Johns Hopkins Medicine

Researchers Propose New Model for Predicting Outcomes in Patients with HPV-Related Throat Cancer

Researchers at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre are proposing a new model to enable doctors to predict outcomes more accurately for patients with throat cancers specifically caused by Human Papillomavirus (HPV).

(Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 16:05 ET)

Journal of Clinical Oncology

– University Health Network (UHN)

Image-Guided Radiotherapy Reduces Long-Term Treatment Side Effects

Patients with soft tissue sarcoma of an extremity treated with preoperative image-guided radiotherapy have fewer long-term side effects than a historical control group treated with preoperative, non-image-guided RT, according to results of a trial published online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

(Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 16:00 ET)

Journal of Clinical Oncology

– American College of Radiology (ACR)

Cancer’s Ability to ‘Hijack’ Regulatory Mechanism Increases Metastasis

When skyscrapers go up, contractors rely on an infrastructure of steel beams and braces. Some cancers grow the same way, using a biological matrix from which the tumor can thrive and spread.

 • Image(s) embedded •  (Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 17:00 ET)

Journal of Clinical Investigation

– University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

Lung Screening Guidelines Improve on Study Findings

A set of guidelines developed to help standardized lung cancer screening would have generated considerably fewer false-positives than the National Lung Screening Trial produced, according to a new retrospective study.

 • Image(s) embedded •  (Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 17:00 ET)

Annals of Internal Medicine; U01-CA-80098; U01-CA-79778; N01-CN-25522; N01-CN-25511; N01-CN-25512; N01-CN-25513; N01-CN-25514; N01-CN-25515...

– University of Michigan Health System

‘Jekyll and Hyde’Protein Both Prevents and Spreads Cancer

Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson tapped into primal fears when he penned “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde,” a 19th century novel about a sinister physician, raising the question, “Can evil and good exist in the same person?”

 • Image(s) embedded •  (Embargo expired on 09-Feb-2015 at 12:00 ET)

Cancer Cell

– University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

UVA Discovers Key to Cancer's Spread

In a breakthrough in the understanding of how cancer spreads, researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have identified a substance secreted by lung cancer cells that enables them to metastasize, beginning their deadly march to other sites in the body. By blocking that process in lab studies, the researchers were able to confine cancer cells to a single tumor site, offering hope that drugs could one day block the spread of cancers in people.

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Cancer Research

– University of Virginia Health System

Study Links New Genetic Anomalies to Breast Cancer in African American Families

Researcher Heather Ochs-Balcom says, "Our family-based gene hunt is similar to the groundbreaking study among women with European ancestry done in the early 1990s that led to the discovery of BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations, which greatly increase susceptibility to breast and ovarian cancer.”

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Cancer, Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention; Journal of Community Genetics

– University at Buffalo

Inherited Gene Variations Tied to Treatment-Related Hearing Loss in Cancer Patients

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital investigators have discovered inherited genetic variations that are associated with rapid hearing loss in young cancer patients treated with the drug cisplatin. The research appears in the current online issue of the scientific journal Nature Genetics.

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Nature Genetics; CA2176534; GM92666

– St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Dartmouth Physician-Scientists Examine Efficacy of Radiation Therapy in 'Good-Risk' DCIS Patients

A collaborative national clinical trials group discovered that radiation therapy in addition to chemotherapy was even more effective at preventing recurrence of ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) than previously thought.

Journal of Clinical Oncology; U10 CA 21661; U10 CA 37422

– Norris Cotton Cancer Center Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

Inflammation Application: How Tumor-Causing Cells are Recruited in Cancers Linked to Chronic Inflammatory Diseases

Gabrilovich and fellow investigators demonstrated what is happening at a cellular level that allows for chronic inflammation to cause a variety of cancers.

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Journal of Experimental Medicine; National Institutes of Health grant CA 100062; Grants P50 CA168536 ; R01CA157303

– Wistar Institute

Study Finds No Reason for Cancer Survivors to Be Excluded in Advanced Stage Lung Cancer Trials

The common practice of excluding patients with a prior cancer diagnosis from lung cancer clinical trials may not be justified, according to a study by researchers from UT Southwestern Medical Center.

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Journal of the National Cancer Institute

– UT Southwestern Medical Center

Could There Be a Gleevec for Brain Cancer?

The drug Gleevec (imatinib mesylate) is well known not only for its effectiveness against chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and acute lymphoblastic leukemia, but also for the story behinds its development. A similar drug might be able to tame some brain cancers, new research from Columbia University Medical Center has shown

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Clinical Cancer Research; R01CA178546; R01NS061776

– Columbia University Medical Center

New Screening Tool Could Speed Development of Ovarian Cancer Drugs

Researchers have built a model system that uses multiple cell types from patients to rapidly test compounds that could block the early steps in the spread of ovarian cancer. This has enabled them to identify small molecules that can inhibit adhesion and invasion, hallmarks of metastasis.

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Nature Communications, February 5, 2015

– University of Chicago Medical Center

Researchers Uncover Signal That Switches Cells to Cancerous Metabolism

Researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine report in Nature Communications that an enzyme called MnSOD causes cells, as they become cancerous, to switch from aerobic metabolism — using oxygen to break down sugars for energy — to a type of fermentation called glycolysis, which does not require oxygen.

Nature Communications

– University of Illinois at Chicago

Environmental Policy to Prevent Cancer-Causing Pollutants

Primary prevention of cancer - that is, stopping cancer before it starts - is possible through changes in environment policy, such as strengthening regulation on air quality and chemicals, including hormone disrupting chemicals. Malta chose to focus on this theme for World Cancer Day 2015. EU Environment Commissioner welcomed the initiative via a video message to the event.

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Expert(s) available

– Health and Environment Alliance (HEAL)

Vanderbilt University School of Nursing Study Tracks Yoga Therapy for Cancer Patients

Researcher Sheila Ridner, Ph.D., MSN, R.N., Martha Rivers Ingram Professor of Nursing, is conducting a pilot study, in which head and neck cancer patients are receiving yoga therapy. It’s designed to increase the mobility of affected parts in order to address lymphedema symptoms, postural problems, and breathing issues, in addition to improving mood.

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– Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Researchers Find Salicylates, a Class of Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (Nsaids), Stop Growth of Vestibular Schwannomas

Researchers from Massachusetts Eye and Ear and the Harvard Medical School/ Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Program in Speech and Hearing Bioscience and Technology have demonstrated that salicylates, a class of non-steroidal inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), reduced the proliferation and viability of cultured vestibular schwannoma cells that cause a sometimes lethal intracranial tumor that typically causes hearing loss and tinnitus.

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Translational Research online Jan-2015

– Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary

Ten-Year Post-Treatment Analysis of German ARO 96-02 Indicates Patients with Detectable PSA After Radical Prostatectomy Should Receive More Aggressive Radiation Therapy Treatment

Prostate cancer patients with detectable prostate specific antigen (PSA) following radical prostatectomy should receive earlier, more aggressive radiation therapy treatment, according to a study published in the February 1, 2015 issue of the International Journal of Radiation Oncology • Biology • Physics (Red Journal), the official scientific journal of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO).

International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics, February 2015

– American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO)

Cell Signaling Pathway Goes Awry in Common Pediatric Brain Tumor

A new study by Johns Hopkins researchers links a well-known cell communication pathway called Notch to one of the most common — but overall still rare — brain tumors found in children.

Journal of Neuropathology & Experimental Neurology; RO1NS055089; P30CA006973

– Johns Hopkins Medicine

New Nanoparticle Gene Therapy Strategy Effectively Treats Deadly Brain Cancer in Rats

Johns Hopkins researchers report they have used nanoparticles to successfully deliver a new therapy to cancer cells in the brains of rats, prolonging their lives.

ACS Nano, Feb-2015; 1R01EB016721

– Johns Hopkins Medicine

Dartmouth Investigators Develop Groundbreaking Technique to Measure Oxygen in Deep-Sited Tumor and Brain

A novel Electron Paramagnetic Resonance (EPR) oximetry technique will help clinicians directly measure oxygen and schedule treatments at times of high oxygen levels in cancer and stroke patients to improve outcomes, The EPR team at Dartmouth's Geisel School of Medicine has found.

Stroke; RO1EB004031; R21NS082585

– Norris Cotton Cancer Center Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

Dartmouth Investigators Push for Substantive Study of Body-Mind Therapy Approaches

Dartmouth investigators note the lack of hypothesized scientific models for the mechanisms of action responsible for outcomes in Somatic Experiencing(SE) trauma therapy and other body-mind therapies.

– Norris Cotton Cancer Center Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

New Tool Helps Identify Lung Cancer Patients Who Will Respond to Immune Therapies

A Yale-led team of researchers has developed a new assay, or investigative tool, to measure the anti-tumor immune activity in non-small cell lung cancer tumors that could lead to a more accurate determination of which patients will respond to immune therapy drugs. Findings from the study were published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

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– Yale Cancer Center

Virginia Tech Researcher Helps Find New Way to Use Electric Fields to Deliver Cancer Treatment

A team of researchers has devised a new way to target tumors with cancer-fighting drugs, a discovery that may lead to clinical treatments for cancer patients. Called iontophoresis, the technique delivers chemotherapy to select areas.

Science Translational Medicine, Feb-2015

– Virginia Tech

Study Offers New Look at Complex Head and Neck Tumor Behavior

Head and neck squamous cell cancer (HNSCC) ranks among the top ten most prevalent cancers in the United States. Despite its prevalence, little is known about how this cancer develops and spreads. However, in a paper published in the January 29, 2015 edition of Nature, researchers offer critical new information about head and neck cancers.


– Yale Cancer Center

Dartmouth Researchers Reprogram Tumor's Cells to Attack Itself

Inserting a specific strain of bacteria into the microenvironment of aggressive ovarian cancer transforms the behavior of tumor cells from suppression to immunostimulation, researchers at Norris Cotton Cancer Center and the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth have found.

OncoImmunology; NIH 5T32AI007363-22 ; NIH 1 U54 CA151662 ; NIGMS 1P30RR032136-01 ; P30 CA023108

– Norris Cotton Cancer Center Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

Dartmouth Cancer Investigators Help National Cancer Institute Present Statistics in More Understandable Ways

Three papers in the survival monograph published by the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, co-authored by Dartmouth's Norris Cotton Cancer Center investigators Steven Woloshin, MD, MS, and Lisa Schwartz, MD, MS, aim to help doctors, patients, and policymakers better understand cancer prognosis and survival.

Journal of the National Cancer Institute

– Norris Cotton Cancer Center Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

FDA Approves New Drug that has Shown Groundbreaking Results in Patients with Estrogen-Receptor Positive Advanced Breast Cancer

FDA has approved IBRANCE (palbociclib), representing a new treatment method to arrest tumor growth in certain advanced breast cancer patients. IBRANCE targets a key family of proteins responsible for cell growth. Results of a phase 2 study found the combination of IBRANCE and letrozole improved progression-free survival by 10 months as compared to letrozole alone. Over 80 percent of metastatic ER+ breast cancer patients received some benefit from this treatment.

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– University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), Health Sciences

Policy and Public Affairs

ASTRO Applauds Medicare’s Final Decision to Cover Annual, Low-Dose CT Screening for High-Risk Lung Cancer Patients Ages 55 to 77

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) commends the February 5, 2015, decision by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to provide coverage for annual lung cancer screening via low-dose CT screening for those at highest-risk for lung cancer.

– American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO)

Medicare Lung Cancer Screening Coverage A Victory for Patients

Medicare’s final decision to cover computed tomography (CT) lung cancer screening gives seniors at high-risk for the disease access to care that can save more lives than any cancer screening test in history

– Society of Thoracic Surgeons


A One-Two Punch Against Ovarian Cancer

Only 1.3 percent of cancers diagnosed between 2004 and 2010 were cancers of the ovary, but fewer than half of these women survived for five years or more. Dr. Sarah Adams is using a grant from the Oxnard Foundation to study a combination therapy she developed to help women with ovarian cancer.

– University of New Mexico Cancer Center

Yale Scientist Wins International Award for Discoveries Leading to New Class of Cancer Drugs

A Spanish foundation has awarded a major scientific prize to Yale researcher Joseph Schlessinger and two colleagues in recognition of their work leading to the first personalized treatments for cancer. The 2015 Frontiers of Knowledge Award in Biomedicine from the Madrid-based BBVA Foundation includes a €400,000 cash prize.

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– Yale Cancer Center

TD Bank Group's Million-Dollar Gift Establishes Recruitment Fund for Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

The Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, one of the top 5 cancer research centres in the world, received a substantial boost today from TD Bank Group. A $1-million gift will establish the TD Collaboration and Recruitment Fund to recruit post-doctoral students, fellows and other researchers to The Princess Margaret. Recruitment is an integral part of The Princess Margaret’s Billion Dollar Challenge for Personalized Cancer Medicine.

– University Health Network (UHN)

Higher Education Events

Charity Game Blurs Party Lines, Raises Money for UNM Cancer Center

The annual "Hoops 4 Hope" basketball game pits the New Mexico Senate "Lobos" against the House "Aggies" to raise money for the UNM Cancer Center.

– University of New Mexico Cancer Center


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