Thursday, April 23, 2015

Toxic mushroom may offer new cancer therapy

CANCER DIGEST – April 22, 2015 – For some time cancer scientists have considered the toxin found in “death cap” mushrooms, called alpha-amanatin, as a possible colorectal cancer treatment. While it has been shown to kill cancer cells, its drawback has been the unacceptable damage it causes to the liver.

In a study published April 22, 2015 in the journal Nature, researchers led by Xiongbin Lu, PhD at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center may have found a way to limit the liver toxicity of alpha-amanatin.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

New blood test can predict future breast cancer

CANCER DIGEST – April 17, 2015 – It sounds like something out of Dr. McCoy’s physician’s bag on Star Trek, a simple test that can tell whether a patient would likely develop cancer within the next five years, but that’s what Dutch scientists say they have developed.

By analysing a simple blood sample, scientists from the University of Copenhagen have succeeded in predicting if a woman will get breast cancer within two to five years. The method – a metabolic blood profile – is still in the early stages but over time the scientists expect it could be used to predict breast cancer and more generally to predict chronic disease.

Circulating tumor DNA can be used to tailor treatment

CANCER DIGEST – April 17, 2015 – Cancer DNA circulating in the bloodstream of lung cancer patients can provide doctors with vital mutation information that can help optimize treatment when tumor tissue is not available, an international group of researchers has reported at the European Lung Cancer Conference (ELCC) in Geneva, Switzerland.

The results have important implications for the use of cancer therapies that target specific cancer mutations, explains Dr Martin Reck from the Department of Thoracic Oncology at Lung Clinic Grosshansdorf, Germany, who presented the findings at the conference.

Monday, April 13, 2015

HPV vaccine for boys could prevent oral cancer, save money

Imagae: courtesy CDC
CANCER DIGEST – April 13, 2015 – The vaccine that prevents cervical cancer in girls may save healthcare dollars if comprehensive vaccination of boys were implemented to prevent oral cancers in boys.

A new study suggests that vaccinating 12-year-old boys against the humanpapilloma virus (HPV) may be a cost-effective strategy for preventing oropharyngeal squamous cell cancer, a cancer that starts at the back of the throat and mouth, and involves the tonsils and base of the tongue.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Tumor DNA in blood predicts recurrence of lymphoma

CANCER DIGEST – April 9, 2015 – Patients who have had the most common form of lymphoma might learn if their cancer has returned earlier with a blood test, researchers say.

In a study that followed 126 patients who achieved complete remission of their diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) for many years, researchers found that measuring blood levels of the tumor’s DNA enabled detection of microscopic disease before it could be seen on computerized tomography CT scans.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Cheap, fast test improves on PSA

Dr. Qun "Treen" Huo 
CANCER DIGEST – April 5, 2015 – A test that costs less than a dollar and yields results in minutes has been shown to be more sensitive and more exact than the prostate specific antigen (PSA) test for early-stage prostate cancer.

The test detects the immune response using gold nanoparticles about 10,000 times smaller than a freckle. It was developed by a research team led by Dr. Qun “Treen” Huo, of the University of Central Florida.