Sylvester Cancer Investigators Find Disparities in Mesothelioma Survival Due to Social Determinants, Limited Access

Treatment outcomes for patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma, a rare cancer commonly known as mesothelioma, are often affected by social determinants of health and overall survival rates could be improved by addressing these health disparities and improving access to specialized care. That’s the key takeaway from new research published March 23 by investigators at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine and collaborators, whose study appears in the journal JAMA Network Open.

Dedicated Neuroendocrine Tumors Program launched at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center

Aman Chauhan, M.D., an internationally recognized neuroendocrine expert, is the newly named leader of the Neuroendocrine Tumor Program at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center. He has devoted his career to neuroendocrine cancer care and research. Unlike many other cancers that are named according to where they are on the body, neuroendocrine cancer can afflict any body part. “My dream is to help advance the field, develop new treatments, and to see improvement of patients’ overall outcomes. I envision that we’ll do that with this dedicated program, which is hyperfocused on this disease, clinically and research-wise,” Chauhan said.

LINK TO DOWNLOADABLE VIDEO: It’s not just putting out fires. Even the ‘protective’ gear firefighters wear may cause cancer.

About 75% of firefighters honored at the annual memorial service of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation have succumbed to cancer – a statistic targeted by Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and its partners at the fifth International Firefighter Cancer Symposium in Miami. And while fighting fires and the chemicals that may be released is an obvious hazard, firefighters’ protective gear is coming under increasing scrutiny, according to researchers and firefighter advocates.

Sylvester Researchers Identify White Blood Cells Called Neutrophils as Major Culprits in Treatment Resistance of Pancreatic Cancer

Researchers have shown for the first time exactly how immature neutrophils – white blood cells that are an important part of the immune system – are hijacked by pancreatic cancers to drive immunosuppression and treatment resistance. The study, led by investigators at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, is published in Cancer Discovery, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

Study: Whole genome sequencing provides unprecedented detail on the genetic evolution of Hodgkin lymphoma

To create the most effective, personalized treatment plans for patients with Hodgkin lymphoma or other cancers, scientists and clinicians need the clearest picture of the genetic changes leading to the cancer’s development. That picture, say scientists at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center in the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, comes into much better focus when whole genome sequencing – rather than the current standard, exome sequencing – is used to identify changes driving the cancer.

Powerful AI algorithm developed by Sylvester scientists, collaborators could yield new insights into deadly brain cancer

Antonio Iavarone, M.D. and colleagues at the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, collaborating with international researchers, have developed a sophisticated AI algorithm that performs advanced computational analysis to identify potential therapeutic targets for glioblastoma multiforme and other cancers. Their work, published in Nature Cancer, could have profound implications for treatment of this usually fatal brain cancer and certain breast, lung and pediatric cancers.

Sylvester researchers awarded grant to help construction workers nail quitting smoking

Taghrid Asfar, M.D. and research colleagues with the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine were recently awarded at $1.4 million from the Florida Department of Public Health to help construction workers quit smoking. “Construction workers have the highest smoking rates among all occupations -- almost double the rate of the general population -- and half of them belong to low-income racial and ethnic minorities,” said Asfar, who’s been studying this problem for almost a decade.

Distinguished cancer researcher, mentor chosen to co-lead Tumor Biology Research Program

Priyamvada Rai, Ph.D., has been appointed co-leader of the Tumor Biology Research Program at Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, part of UHealth – University of Miami Health System. She will strive to promote collaboration among Sylvester’s researchers to better understand cancer cell behavior – a vital step for developing therapeutic approaches that benefit cancer patients. She joins program co-leaders Wael El-Rifai, M.D., Ph.D., and Scott M. Welford, Ph.D.

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