Search for: "cancer cells" - 1000 articles found

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News • Alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma

Promising new treatment for deadly pediatric tumor

Alveolar rhabdomyosarcoma is a rare pediatric tumor. For more than 40 years there has not been any new development regarding treatment. Research led by Prof. Dr. Anton Henssen at Charité University Berlin has now identified a new therapeutic option, using a drug that is currently under investigation for other types of cancer.

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News • miR-634 vs. OSCC

Anti-cancer "dream cream" to shrink oral tumors

Modern medicine offers “peel and stick” solutions like nicotine or contraceptive patches to put right on the skin without needing to visit a doctor for an injection or procedure. Now, researchers have found that applying a topical ointment containing anti-tumor factor can increase the effectiveness of cancer treatment.

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Article • Super-resolution miscroscopy

PEAR: setting nano-imaging in motion

Ever since the Abbe diffraction limit of conventional microscopy has been surpassed, super-resolution techniques have been diving ever deeper into the most miniscule details of molecular structures. We spoke with Prof. Dominic Zerulla, whose company PEARlabs is developing an imaging technique that sets out to push the boundaries once more – by looking at in-vivo nano-scale processes in motion.

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Article • Key technologies

Artificial intelligence in medicine will prevail

Artificial intelligence (AI) is changing our healthcare systems. It can help us detect diseases earlier, improve patient care and reduce healthcare costs. However, there is still a lack of trust, of rules and safety regulations and of broad data pools. How can we use AI successfully in healthcare systems and what role will it play in the future?

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News • Chemotherapy approach

New receptor insights might leave cancer bitter

Bitter taste receptors do not only support humans in tasting. They are also found on cancer cells. A team led by Veronika Somoza from the Faculty of Chemistry at the University of Vienna and the German Leibniz Institute for Food Systems Biology at the Technical University of Munich has investigated the role they play there. For this purpose, the scientists compiled and evaluated extensive…

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News • Conducting diagnostics

Detecting breast cancer via electrical currents in the skin

Mammograms are a safe, effective way to detect the presence of breast cancer in women. But doctors recommend most females should start getting mammograms after the age of 40 in part because the procedure involves small doses of ionizing radiation. While the risk of getting breast cancer is higher for older people, it can strike at any age. Studies show that 5% to 7% of females with breast cancer…

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News • Relapse research

Multiple myeloma: Tracking down resistant cancer cells

In multiple myeloma, a cancer of the bone marrow, relapse almost always occurs after treatment. Initially, most patients respond well to therapy. However, as the disease progresses, resistant cancer cells spread in the bone marrow, with fatal consequences for the patients. Scientists at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg University Hospital (UKHD) and the National Center for…

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Article • Pre-, post- and interoperative

Wearable devices in the surgical environment

Wearable technology has become an important part of medicine, from tracking vital signs to disease diagnosis. In surgery, wearable technologies can now assist, augment, and provide a means of patient assessment before, during and after surgical procedures. Wearable technologies are applied before the patient even reaches the operating room, for example in prehabilitation, i.e. pre-treatment…

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Article • NGS solution

Using liquid biopsy to detect recurrent breast cancer earlier

An innovative collaboration has been formed in the UK between academic researchers and industry to develop a rapid integrated liquid biopsy platform for early detection of recurrent breast cancer. Breast cancer specialists Professor Charles Coombes, who is Professor of Medical Oncology at Imperial College London (ICL), and Professor Jacqui Shaw, Head of the Department of Genetics and Genome…

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News • Coronavirus imaging

Brightest ever X-ray shows lung damage from Covid-19

The damage caused by Covid-19 to the lungs’ smallest blood vessels has been intricately captured using high-energy X-rays emitted by a special type of particle accelerator. Scientists from University College London (UCL) and the European Synchrotron Research Facility (ESRF) used a new imaging technology called Hierarchical Phase-Contrast Tomography (HiP-CT), to scan donated human organs,…

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News • Coronavirus inhibition

Highly potent antibody against SARS-CoV-2 discovered

Scientists at Lausanne University Hospital (CHUV) and École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) have discovered a highly potent monoclonal antibody that targets the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and is effective at neutralizing all variants of concern identified to date, including the delta variant. Their findings are published in the journal Cell Reports.

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News • Cancer research

How to break through a tumor's protective shield

The immune system protects the body from cancer. To protect healthy body cells from its own immune system, they have developed a protective shield: the protein CD47 is a so called "don’t eat me" signal, which tells the immune cells to stand back. Tumor cells exploit this CD47-based protection strategy for evading the immune system, by increasing presentation of CD47 on their cell…

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News • 3D microelectrodes

Promising approach for pain relief without side effects

Researchers at Lund University in Sweden have developed a completely new stimulation method, using ultra-thin microelectrodes, to combat severe pain. This provides effective and personalised pain relief without the common side effects from pain relief drugs. The study, which was conducted on rats, has been published in the research journal Science Advances.

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Article • Mass spectrometry goes handheld

A pen to pin down the fringes of cancer

Mass spectrometry – a powerful tool for analysing the molecular composition of a tissue sample – is invaluable during cancer surgery. However, mass spectrometers are complex and unwieldy, and certainly a poor fit for an operating room (OR). To create a bridge between the lab and OR, Professor Livia S Eberlin, from Baylor College of Medicine, has developed a very special ‘pen’.

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News • Organoid research

Structure formation in mini-organs

Many of the organ systems found in animals exhibit highly complex structures, which are essential for their various functions. How such structures develop during embryonic development is a central question in biology. Physicists led by Erwin Frey (Professor of Statistical and Biological Physics at LMU Munich) and Andreas Bausch (Professor of Cellular Biophysics at the Technical University of…

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News • Ductal adenocarcinoma

Pancreatic cancer ‘priming’ may make chemotherapy more effective

A new approach to ‘prime’ the tumour environment may improve how effective chemotherapy is for pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, one of the most aggressive forms of pancreatic cancer. In preclinical models, a team at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research could enhance the tumours’ response to chemotherapy by reducing the stiffness and density of the connective tissue known as the stroma,…

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News • Tumor growth stopped in mice

Antidepressants show promise in cancer growth inhibition

Classic antidepressants could help improve modern cancer treatments. They slowed the growth of pancreatic and colon cancers in mice, and when combined with immunotherapy, they even stopped the cancer growth long-term. In some cases the tumors disappeared completely, researchers at the University of Zurich (UZH) and University Hospital Zurich (USZ) have found. Their findings will now be tested in…

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News • Promising algorithm

AI tool improves breast cancer imaging accuracy

A computer program trained to see patterns among thousands of breast ultrasound images can aid physicians in accurately diagnosing breast cancer, a new study shows. When tested separately on 44,755 already completed ultrasound exams, the artificial intelligence (AI) tool improved radiologists’ ability to correctly identify the disease by 37 percent and reduced the number of tissue samples, or…

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News • DNA damage causes AML

Cancer chemotherapy side-effects on blood cell development

By analysing secondary acute myeloid leukaemias, researchers at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB) Barcelona have detected mutations caused by platinum-based chemotherapies in cells that were healthy at the time of treatment. Treatment with chemotherapies influences the development of blood cells, favouring clonal hematopoiesis from cells with pre-existing mutations. The study has…

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News • Classifying subtypes

Breast cancer ‘ecotypes’ could lead to more personalised treatment

A team led by the Garvan Institute of Medical Research has revealed a new approach for classifying breast cancer subtypes based on their cell profile, which could help personalise treatments for patients. By analysing breast cancer biopsies from patients at Sydney hospitals, the researchers revealed more than 50 distinct cancer, immune and connective cell types and states, which could assign…

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News • Patient response testing

New method predicts which cancer therapies work (and which don't)

A new technology that can study which therapies will work on patients with solid cancerous tumours has been developed by scientists at University College London (UCL). Researchers say the tool, which can rapidly test tumorous tissue against different treatments, such as chemotherapy, immunotherapy or radiotherapy, could be used by clinicians to pinpoint the best therapy for a particular patient.

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News • Understanding oncogenesis

How normal cells turn into liver cancer cells

Researchers at the University of Helsinki could show for the first time that normal human fibroblast cells can be converted to specific cancer cells using only factors that are commonly detected in actual human patients. Previous studies have achieved this only by using powerful viral factors that are not common in human cancers. Since many human cancer types still lack specific diagnostic…

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News • Reducing collateral damage

A shield to protect patients during prostate cancer radiotherapy

Prostate cancer specialists from the Radiotherapy Department at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals Foundation Trust have become the first in the world to use an innovative technique to help patients receiving treatment for prostate cancer. Some patients receiving radiotherapy for prostate cancer will have their treatment split into two portions. The first stage of killing the cancerous…

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News • Research on after-effects

Viruses leave traces long after the infection is over

Viruses do not always kill the cells they infect. Researchers at the University of Basel have discovered in experiments with mice that cells have the power to self-heal and eliminate viruses. However, these cells undergo long-term changes. The findings may provide a hint as to why cured hepatitis C patients are more susceptible to liver cancer for years after.

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Article • Precision oncology

Personalized health and genomics: Minimizing collateral damage

A solid diagnosis has always been the first step on any patient’s journey to health. However, diagnostic categories are necessarily oversimplifications. In the last decades, medical professionals and scientists have begun to uncover the true variability in patients’ physiological and biochemical make-up that is the principal cause for individual variations in the way diseases present…

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News • Brain cancer research

Researchers 3D-print entire active tumor

Researchers at Tel Aviv University have 3D-printed a first-of-its-kind glioblastoma tumor that mimics a living cancer malignancy, powering new methods to improve treatment and accelerate the development of new drugs for the most lethal type of brain cancer. Glioblastoma is notoriously fatal as it accounts for the majority of brain tumors and is highly aggressive. The average survival time of…

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News • Early detection & prevention

Blood-based micro-RNAs indicate colorectal cancer risk

The risk of colorectal cancer can be predicted more accurately by determining seven blood-based micro-RNAs (miRNAs) than by using traditional methods - and can be done so many years before a diagnosis is made. In a current study, researchers from the German Cancer Research Center and the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg show that miRNA profiles provide greater predictive…

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News • Tumor environment

When cancer cells turn acidic to survive

For the first time, researchers at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) have shown how cancer cells reprogram themselves to produce lactic acid and to tolerate the acidic environment that exists around tumors. The finding could lead to a whole new direction for treating cancer. The breakthrough is the result of more than 13 years of work. The next step in research could…

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News • Cell delivery vehicles

Bio-inspired nanocontainers could enter cells and release their medical cargo

Nanocontainers can transport substances into cells where they can then take effect. This is the method used in, for example, the mRNA vaccines currently being employed against Covid-19 as well as certain cancer drugs. In research, similar transporters can also be used to deliver labelled substances into cells in order to study basic cellular functions. To take advantage of their full potential,…

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News • Controlling KRAS

New targeted gene therapy could stop lung cancer progression

A newly targeted therapy could help millions of lung cancer patients worldwide keep their cancers from spreading, says an expert at Cleveland Clinic, on the occasion of World Lung Cancer Day. Dr. Khaled Hassan, of the Hematology and Medical Oncology Department at Cleveland Clinic, explains the concept of KRAS targeted therapy – and why the approach should not be mistaken for a cancer cure.

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News • Tool to identify tumour mutations

Machine learning fuels personalised cancer medicine

The Biomedical Genomics laboratory at the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB) Barcelona has developed a computational tool that identifies cancer driver mutations for each tumour type. This and other developments produced by the same lab seek to accelerate cancer research and provide tools to help oncologists choose the best treatment for each patient. The study has been published in the…

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News • Immune response determined

How Covid-19 vaccines prepare our immune system for the virus

In view of the continuing high numbers of infections, vaccination offers important protection against severe Covid-19 disease. Scientists from the Faculty of Medicine – University of Freiburg have now been able to determine in detail at what time point initial immune protection is established after vaccination with an mRNA-based vaccine and how the reactions of the various components of the…

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News • MSI tumors

Vaccination against hereditary colorectal cancer shows promise

Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center and Heidelberg University Hospital have for the first time been able to delay the development of hereditary colorectal cancer with a protective vaccination. Mice with a hereditary predisposition to colorectal cancer survived significantly longer after vaccination than unvaccinated animals. Combining the vaccination with an anti-inflammatory drug…

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News • Angiogenesis

Magnetic stimulation boosts blood vessel formation

Magnetic fields can be used to stimulate blood vessel growth, according to a new study. The findings, published in the journal Science and Technology of Advanced Materials by researchers at the Técnico Lisboa and NOVA School of Science and Technology in Portugal, could lead to new treatments for cancers and help regenerate tissues that have lost their blood supply.

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News • Genetic alterations

Same mutation, different cancers: researchers explore connections

Why do alterations of certain genes cause cancer only in specific organs of the human body? Scientists at the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK), the Technical University of Munich (TUM), and the University Medical Center Göttingen have now demonstrated that cells originating from different organs are differentially susceptible to activating mutations in cancer drivers: The same mutation in…

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News • Tumour development research

New bladder cancer model could lead to better treatment

Uppsala University scientists have designed a new mouse model that facilitates study of factors contributing to the progression of human bladder cancer and of immune-system activation when the tumour is growing. Using this model, they have been able to study how proteins change before, while and after a tumour develops in the bladder wall. The study has now been published in the scientific…

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News • RAS protein mutation

New treatment approach targets cancer 'Death Star'

A new way to target a mutant protein which can cause the deadliest of cancers in humans has been uncovered by scientists at Leeds. The mutated form of the RAS protein has been referred to as the “Death Star” because of its ability to resist treatments and is found in 96% of pancreatic cancers and 54% of colorectal cancers. RAS is a protein important for health but in its mutated form it can…

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News • Support for T cells

Improving immune response against severe viral infections

Researchers have identified a way to improve the immune response in the face of severe viral infections. It is widely known that severe viral infections and cancer cause impairments to the immune system, including to T cells, a process called immune ‘exhaustion’. Overcoming immune exhaustion is a major goal for the development of new therapies for cancer or severe viral infections.

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News • Promising research tool

World's first digital cancer cell model

Computer models have been standard tools in basic biomedical research for many years. However, around 70 years after the first publication of an ion current model of a nerve cell by Hodgkin & Huxley in 1952, researchers at Graz University of Technology (TU Graz), in collaboration with the Medical University of Graz and the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, have finally…

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Article • Personalised medicine

'Body-on-a-chip' technology boosts drug development

Integrating laboratory functions on a microchip circuit is helping improve the cost-effectiveness of drug development. So-called ‘lab-on-a-chip’ or ‘human-on-a-chip’ technology can highlight which treatments may, or may not, work before advancing along the clinical trial process. It can also have benefits for chronic and rare diseases, as well as helping shape personalised medicine.…

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Article • Fighting cancer together

New interdisciplinary approaches to intervention & immuno-oncology

Over recent years interventional oncology (IO), as a subspecialty of interventional radiology, has become a standard component of many cancer therapies. The broad range of minimally invasive methods – and their results – are often comparable to those of traditional approaches, such as surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy, e.g. with regard to hepatocellular cancer (HCC), oligometastatic…

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News • Advanced care

This 'smart' wound dressing monitors the healing process with built-in sensors

Researchers at RMIT University in Australia have developed smart wound dressings with built-in nanosensors that glow to alert patients when a wound is not healing properly. The multifunctional, antimicrobial dressings feature fluorescent sensors that glow brightly under UV light if infection starts to set in and can be used to monitor healing progress.

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News • Oncology early detection tool

Blood test for 50+ types of cancer promising for screening

Final results from a study of a blood test that can detect more than 50 types of cancer have shown that it is accurate enough to be rolled out as a multi-cancer screening test among people at higher risk of the disease, including patients aged 50 years or older, without symptoms. In a paper published in the cancer journal Annals of Oncology, researchers report that the test accurately detected…

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News • Unexpected find

Anti-tapeworm drug shows promise against Covid-19

Researchers from the German Center for Infection Research (DZIF) at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the University of Bonn have examined the way in which SARS-CoV-2 reprograms the metabolism of the host cell in order to gain an overall advantage. According to their report in Nature Communications, the researchers were able to identify four substances which inhibit SARS-CoV-2…

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News • Molecular research

How retroviruses become infectious

Understanding every step in the life cycle of a virus is crucial for identifying potential targets for treatment. Now, scientists at the Institute of Science and Technology (IST) Austria were able to show how a virus from the retrovirus family – the same family as HIV – protects its genetic information and becomes infectious. Furthermore, they show an unexpected flexibility of the virus. This…

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News • „Swarm Learning“

AI with swarm intelligence to analyse medical data

Communities benefit from sharing knowledge and experience among their members. Following a similar principle - called “swarm learning” - an international research team has trained artificial intelligence algorithms to detect blood cancer, lung diseases and Covid-19 in data stored in a decentralized fashion. This approach has advantage over conventional methods since it inherently provides…

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News • Targeted drug delivery

'Soft X‑ray' method opens up ways for smart nano-medicine

Before the huge potential of tiny nanocarriers for highly targeted drug delivery and environmental clean-up can be realized, scientists first need to be able to see them. Currently researchers have to rely on attaching fluorescent dyes or heavy metals to label parts of organic nanocarrier structures for investigation, often changing them in the process. A new technique using chemically-sensitive…

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News • Neuroscience

Potential new approach for epilepsy control

Researchers from Case Western Reserve University have identified a potential new approach to better controlling epilepsy. Lin Mei, professor and chair of the Department of Neurosciences at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine, who led the new study in mouse models, said the team found a new chemical reaction that could help control epileptic seizures.

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Article • Digital pathology

Today’s tissue for tomorrow’s research

Specialist biorepositories are helping advance personalised medicine by supporting the availability of human tissue for research using digital pathology techniques. The pivotal role of the Glasgow Tissue Research Facility (GTRF) in making tissue available to shape new therapies and treatments was outlined in a presentation to the online “Transforming Digital Pathology – Integrating AI to Move…

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News • Donor organ analysis

New laser technique could improve liver transplant process

Handheld laser devices that help surgeons quickly spot liver damage could transform transplant procedures, research suggests. The non-invasive technique could provide medical staff with instant data on the health of donor livers and help them to identify which organs are suitable for transplant. If widely adopted, the light-based tool could allow more livers to be transplanted safely and…

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News • Headache

Chronic migraine: potential novel treatment discovered

By discovering a potential new cellular mechanism for migraines, researchers may have also found a new way to treat chronic migraine. Amynah Pradhan, associate professor of psychiatry at the University of Illinois Chicago, is the senior author of the study, whose goal was to identify a new mechanism of chronic migraine, and propose a cellular pathway for migraine therapies. The study, “Neuronal…

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News • Aggressive brain tumour

Glioblastoma can be tricked into 'repairing' itself

Scientists at the University College London (UCL) have made a ‘surprising’ discovery that glioblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer, mimics normal brain repair in white matter, which leads to the tumour becoming less malignant. In the study on mice, funded by Cancer Research UK and published in Nature Communications, researchers used these novel findings to identify drugs which could be used,…

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News • Chemotherapeutic delivery

Bowel cancer: Nanotechnology offers new hope

Bowel cancer survival rates could be improved if chemotherapy drugs were delivered via tiny nanoparticles to the diseased organs rather than oral treatment. That’s the finding from Indian and Australian scientists who have undertaken the first study, using nanoparticles to target bowel cancer, the third most common cancer in the world and the second most deadliest.

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News • Vision for vision

Reversing blindness: Award for cone optogenetics gene therapy

The Foundation Fighting Blindness has granted 600,000 US$ to help Hendrik Scholl as principal investigator define a novel way of reversing blindness. Hendrik Scholl is Director of the Institute of Molecular and Clinical Ophthalmology Basel (IOB), Professor and Chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology, University of Basel, and Head of the University Hospital’s Eye Clinic in Basel, Switzerland.

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News • Regeneration research

Scientists uncover how our skin repairs itself

University of Manchester scientists have cast new light on how our skin repairs itself, bringing the possibility of regeneration of the organ a step closer. The study team, funded by the Medical Research Council and Helmut Horten Foundation, showed the activation of specific parts of the DNA leading to better division of human skin cells. The study is published in Nucleic Acid Research.

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News • More targeted treatment

AI could improve outcomes for bowel cancer patients

A test which uses artificial intelligence (AI) to measure proteins present in some patients with advanced bowel cancer could hold the key to more targeted treatment, according to new research. A team at the University of Leeds collaborated with researchers at Roche Diagnostics to develop the technique, which will help doctors and patients to decide on the best treatment options.

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News • Esophagitis

Lung cancer: Tailoring radiation therapy to reduce complications

For many patients with localized lung cancer (non-small-cell lung carcinoma and small cell lung carcinoma), high-dose radiation with concurrent chemotherapy is a potential cure. Yet this treatment can cause severe, acute inflammation of the esophagus (esophagitis) in about one in five patients, requiring hospitalization and placement of a feeding tube. A team of radiation oncologists at Mass…

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News • Coronavirus research

'Covid-19 atlas' uncovers differing immune responses in asymptomatic versus severe cases

The largest study of its kind in the UK has identified differences in the immune response to Covid-19 between people with no symptoms, compared to those suffering a more serious reaction to the virus. The research by Newcastle University and collaborators within the Human Cell Atlas initiative found raised levels of specific immune cells in asymptomatic people. They also showed people with more…

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Video • Bioprinting breakthrough

3D printed mini pancreas to help fight diabetes

First you see it as a transparent shape on a computer screen – a small electronic replica of the human pancreas. Then just 30 seconds later the tissue is printed out on a bioprinter, blood vessels and all, from a sample of human stem cells. This amazing feat is possible thanks to new technology created at EPFL’s Laboratory of Applied Photonics Devices (LAPD) and further developed by…

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News • Stopping the spread

Research sheds new light on pancreatic cancer metastasis

With an overall survival rate of 9% for those diagnosed, pancreatic cancer remains exceedingly difficult to treat. However, the patient's primary tumor typically isn't what leads to death - it is the cancer's ability to evade detection and metastasize to other organs. A team of researchers at the College of Medicine at the University of Oklahoma has published a new study in the journal…

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News • Cancer research

'Gene ferry' improves immune therapies

Genetically enhancing a patient's immune cells by adding therapeutic genes to them outside the body is regarded as a promising new treatment approach in oncology. However, the production of these therapeutic cells using viruses is not only expensive but time-consuming. Researchers at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) have developed an innovative non-viral vector that can efficiently…

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News • Biomarker research

"Jumping" genes might protect against AML and other blood cancers

New research has uncovered a surprising role for so-called “jumping” genes that are a source of genetic mutations responsible for a number of human diseases. In the new study from Children’s Medical Center Research Institute at UT Southwestern (CRI), scientists made the unexpected discovery that these DNA sequences, also known as transposons, can protect against certain blood cancers. These…

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News • CRISPR-Cas9

An 'on-off switch' for gene editing

Over the past decade, the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing system has revolutionized genetic engineering, allowing scientists to make targeted changes to organisms’ DNA. While the system could potentially be useful in treating a variety of diseases, CRISPR-Cas9 editing involves cutting DNA strands, leading to permanent changes to the cell’s genetic material. Now, in a paper published online in Cell,…

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News • Mitochondria research

Colorectal cancer: Mutations in overlooked DNA could have huge impact on survival

DNA errors in the cell’s energy ‘factories’ increases the chances of survival for people with bowel cancer, also known as colorectal cancer, according to a new study. Studying how DNA errors (mutations) can drive cancer development, as well as help it adapt and evolve, has been a key focus of cancer research. But much of that focus has been on DNA found in the cell’s nucleus. Experts say…

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News • Here comes the tooth fairy

New drug shows promise for regenerating lost teeth

A new study by scientists at Kyoto University and the University of Fukui may offer hope for adults who have lost their teeth. The team reports that an antibody for one gene - uterine sensitization associated gene-1 or USAG-1 - can stimulate tooth growth in mice suffering from tooth agenesis, a congenital condition. The paper was published in Science Advances. Although the normal adult mouth has…

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Article • Digital pathology

AI delivers cervical cancer screening to rural areas of Kenya

Experts from Sweden, Finland and Kenya are using digital microscopy combined with Artificial Intelligence (AI) to deliver a rapid and effective cervical screening service to rural locations in Kenya. The project sees AI and digital diagnostics bridge the gap between low-resource settings and the availability of centralised AI-enhanced expertise and pathology services, located in larger cities in…

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Video • Uprooting cancer

New hydrogel 'reprograms' cancer cells back to cancer stem cells

An innovative hydrogel – called a double network (DN) gel – can rapidly reprogram differentiated cancer cells into cancer stem cells, researchers at Hokkaido University and the National Cancer Center Research Institute have reported in the journal Nature Biomedical Engineering. The hydrogel can be used to help develop new cancer therapies and personalized medicines targeting cancer stem cells.

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News • Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma

A new approach for treating bile duct cancer

Intrahepatic cholangiocarcinoma (ICC) develops within the liver. With one to two cases per 100,000 inhabitants in Germany, ICC is one of the rare diseases overall, but it is the second most common liver cancer. The aggressive bile duct tumour remains clinically inconspicuous for a long time, so that it is often only detected late. Because the tumour also only responds to chemotherapy to a limited…

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News • Nanotechnology

New low-cost solution for virus-scale microscopy

Using an ordinary light microscope, engineers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have devised a technique for imaging biological samples with accuracy at the scale of 10 nanometers — which should enable them to image viruses and potentially even single biomolecules, the researchers say. The new technique builds on expansion microscopy, an approach that involves embedding…

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News • Malignant brain tumor

Successful test for mutation-specific vaccine against diffuse gliomas

Tumor vaccines can help the body fight cancer. Mutations in the tumor genome often lead to protein changes that are typical of cancer. A vaccine can alert the patients' immune system to these mutated proteins. For the first time, physicians and cancer researchers from Heidelberg and Mannheim have now carried out a clinical trial to test a mutation-specific vaccine against malignant brain tumors.…

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News • Acidity analysis

Harnessing AI to identify cancer cells

Healthy and cancer cells can look similar under a microscope. One way of differentiating them is by examining the level of acidity, or pH level, inside the cells. Tapping on this distinguishing characteristic, a research team from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has developed a technique that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to determine whether a single cell is healthy or cancerous…

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News • Promising study results

Electromagnetic fields hinder spread of breast cancer

Electricity may slow – and in some cases, stop – the speed at which breast cancer cells spread through the body, a new study indicates. The research also found that electromagnetic fields might hinder the amount of breast cancer cells that spread. The findings, published recently in the journal Bioelectricity, suggest that electromagnetic fields might be a useful tool in fighting cancers that…

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News • BMMF research

Novel pathogens: a driver for colorectal cancer?

Do BMMFs, the novel infectious agents found in dairy products and bovine sera, play a role in the development of colorectal cancer? Scientists led by Harald zur Hausen detected the pathogens in colorectal cancer patients in close proximity to tumors. The researchers show that the BMMFs trigger local chronic inflammation, which can cause mutations via activated oxygen molecules and thus promote…

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News • Breast cancer diagnostics

New system to make AI diagnosis explainable

Researchers at TU Berlin and Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin as well as the University of Oslo have developed a new tissue-section analysis system for diagnosing breast cancer based on artificial intelligence (AI). Two further developments make this system unique: For the first time, morphological, molecular and histological data are integrated in a single analysis. Secondly, the system…

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News • Survivin research

Switching off the 'survival protein' for cancer cells

It is called the "survival protein" because it plays a central role in the growth of cancer cells: survivin influences two important processes in the body's cells at the same time – cell death and cell division. Chemists and biologists at the Universität Duisburg-Essen (UDE) have now succeeded in developing a precise molecule that can bind the protein’s surface at a defined site…

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News • A BOLD-100 approach

Novel metallodrug shows promise in tumour treatment

BOLD-100/KP1339 is a ruthenium-based anticancer agent that has been co-developed at the University of Vienna and which has shown promising results in clinical trials in cancer patients. However, the mode of action of this metal compound has not yet been fully elucidated. Researchers from the University of Vienna and the Medical University of Vienna have now been able to demonstrate that BOLD-100…

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News • Tiny changes, huge effects

Finding causes of disease with induced pluripotent stem cells

Induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSC) are suitable for discovering the genes that underly complex and also rare genetic diseases. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), together with international partners, have studied genotype-phenotype relationships in iPSCs using data from approximately one thousand donors. Tens of…

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News • Cancer vaccine research

Tackling tumors with two types of virus

An international research group led by the University of Basel has developed a promising strategy for therapeutic cancer vaccines. Using two different viruses as vehicles, they administered specific tumor components in experiments on mice with cancer in order to stimulate their immune system to attack the tumor. The approach is now being tested in clinical studies.

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News • Collagen 'pushing'

Supercomputer illustrates mechanical process of cancer growth

According to the World Health Organization, one in six worldwide deaths have been attributed to cancer; however, these fatalities were not due to initial malignant tumors—the deaths were caused by the spread of cancer cells to surrounding tissues and subsequent tumor growth. These tissues, which consist largely of collagen, have been the focus of a recent collaborative study by a team from…

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Video • Multiphoton microscopy gives new insights

Microscopic behaviour of developing breast cells uncovered

An improved high-tech fluorescence microscopy technique is allowing researchers to film cells inside the breast as never seen before. This new protocol provides detailed instructions on how to capture hi-res movies of cell movement, division and cooperation, in hard-to-reach regions of breast tissue. The technology – called multiphoton microscopy – uses infrared lasers to illuminate…

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News • Curbing collaterals

High energy radiotherapy ‘paints’ tumours, avoids healthy tissue

A radiotherapy technique which ‘paints’ tumours by targeting them precisely, and avoiding healthy tissue, has been devised in research led by the University of Strathclyde. Researchers used a magnetic lens to focus a Very High Electron Energy (VHEE) beam to a zone of a few millimetres. Concentrating the radiation into a small volume of high dose will enable it to be rapidly scanned across a…

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News • Human cytomegalovirus in immunocompromised patients

Post-transplant HCMV infection: pre-emptive strike could save many lives

A potential new treatment to protect immunosuppressed patients from human cytomegalovirus (HCMV) has been discovered by scientists at the University of Cambridge. Their study shows that certain epigenetic inhibitors expose and help to destroy dormant HCMV infections, which often reactivate to cause serious illness and death in these vulnerable groups. Subject to clinical trials, their proposed…

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News • Brain tumour analysis

Glioblastoma '3D maps' help find new therapies

Researchers at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona obtained a highly accurate recreation of human glioblastoma’s features using a novel 3D microscopy analysis. The study, published in the journal Acta Neuropathologica Communications, provides new information to help with the diagnose, by finding therapeutical targets and designing immunotherapeutical strategies.

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News • Physics of tumours

How cancer cells shape-shift to squeeze through tissue

Working with colleagues from Germany and the US, researchers at Leipzig University have achieved a breakthrough in research into how cancer cells spread. In experiments, the team of biophysicists led by Professor Josef Alfons Käs, Steffen Grosser and Jürgen Lippoldt demonstrated for the first time how cells deform in order to move in dense tumour tissues and squeeze past neighbouring cells. The…

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News • From science fiction to reality

Researchers develop powerful pocket-sized imaging device

Before Wilhelm Röntgen, a mechanical engineer, discovered a new type of electromagnetic radiation in 1895, physicians could only dream of being able to see inside the body. Within a year of Röntgen’s discovery, X-rays were being used to identify tumors. Within 10 years, hospitals were using X-rays to help diagnose and treat patients. In 1972, computed tomography (CT) scans were developed. In…

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News • Survival prediction

Deep learning may lead to better lung cancer treatments

Doctors and healthcare workers may one day use a machine learning model, called deep learning, to guide their treatment decisions for lung cancer patients, according to a team of Penn State Great Valley researchers. In a study, the researchers report that they developed a deep learning model that, in certain conditions, was more than 71% accurate in predicting survival expectancy of lung cancer…

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News • Brain cancer research

New approach could stop glioblastoma growth

Inhibiting a key enzyme that controls a large network of proteins important in cell division and growth, paves the way for a new class of drugs that could stop glioblastoma, a deadly brain cancer, from growing. Researchers at Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, the Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and University of Toronto (U of T), showed that chemically inhibiting the enzyme PRMT5 can…

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News • Detect lingering disease

Liquid biopsy for colorectal cancer could guide therapy for tumors

A new study from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis demonstrates that a liquid biopsy examining blood or urine can help gauge the effectiveness of therapy for colorectal cancer that has just begun to spread beyond the original tumor. Such a biopsy can detect lingering disease and could serve as a guide for deciding whether a patient should undergo further treatments due to some…

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News • Nuclear medicine

Targeted cancer therapy: Researchers speed up astatine-211 purification

In a recent study, researchers at the Texas A&M University have described a new process to purify astatine-211, a promising radioactive isotope for targeted cancer treatment. Unlike other elaborate purification methods, their technique can extract astatine-211 from bismuth in minutes rather than hours, which can greatly reduce the time between production and delivery to the patient.

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News • A closer look at thapsigargin

Potential antiviral treatment for Covid-19 found

Researchers from the University of Nottingham have discovered a novel antiviral property of a drug that could have major implications in how future epidemics/pandemics – including Covid-19 – are managed. The study, published in Viruses, shows that thapsigargin is a promising broad‑spectrum antiviral, highly effective against SARS-CoV-2, a common cold coronavirus, respiratory syncytial virus…

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News • Biological evidence

Scalp cooling protects hair from chemotherapy

A study reveals that scalp cooling physically protects hair follicles from chemotherapy drugs. It is the world’s first piece of biological evidence that explains how scalp cooling actually works and the mechanism behind its protection of the hair follicle. The data was part of an innovative hair follicle research project carried out by the dedicated Scalp Cooling Research Centre based at the…

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News • Early detection

Blood-based methylation test offers promising data on lung cancer detection

In-vitro diagnostics company Universal Diagnostics (UDX) announced promising new data for its investigational blood-based lung cancer test. The data, presented at the IASLC 2020 World Conference on Lung Cancer hosted by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (#WCLC20), held virtually 28th-31st January 2021, used methylation status measurement of the tumour-derived portion from…

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News • Protein anchors

Key molecule in cancer spread and epilepsy discovered

Certain anchor proteins inhibit a key metabolic driver that plays an important role in cancer and developmental brain disorders. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the University of Innsbruck, together with a Europe-wide research network, discovered this molecular mechanism, which could open up new opportunities for personalized therapies for cancer and neuronal diseases.

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News • Lymphocytosis research

Tracing the onset of leukaemia

B-cell lymphocytosis, a condition in which individuals have increased levels of particular white blood cells, in some cases leads to blood cancer. As an international team of researchers now shows in samples from patients, both diseases exhibit similar epigenetic signatures that are forming very early during the course of the disease. Chronic leukemias often start insidiously. White blood cells…

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News • Valid for breast as well as blood cancers

Surprising benefits discovered in new cancer treatment

One more piece of the puzzle has fallen into place behind a new drug whose anti-cancer potential was developed at the University of Alberta and is set to begin human trials this year, thanks to newly published research. “The results provide more justification and rationale for starting the clinical trial in May,” said first author John Mackey, professor and director of oncology clinical…

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News • Mapping the 'family tree' of cancer

Metastasis monitoring: CRISPR tool catches cancer 'in the act'

When cancer is confined to one spot in the body, doctors can often treat it with surgery or other therapies. Much of the mortality associated with cancer, however, is due to its tendency to metastasize, sending out seeds of itself that may take root throughout the body. The exact moment of metastasis is fleeting, lost in the millions of divisions that take place in a tumor. “These events are…

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News • An unexpected and novel target

How our biological clock could save us from prostate cancer

Our biological or circadian clock synchronizes all our bodily processes to the natural rhythms of light and dark. It’s no wonder then that disrupting the clock can wreak havoc on our body. In fact, studies have shown that when circadian rhythms are disturbed through sleep deprivation, jet lag, or shift work, there is an increased incidence of some cancers including prostate cancer, which is the…

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News • RNA editing

New mechanism of cancer formation discovered

A team of scientists at the National University of Singapore (NUS) led by Dr Polly Leilei Chen from the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore and Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine has discovered a previously unknown mechanism of cancer formation, the understanding of which may lead to more effective treatment. Their findings concern a process called RNA editing. The DNA code of a gene gets…

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Article • AI use in clinical diagnosis

Deep learning tool predicts tumour expression from whole slide images

A deep learning model to predict RNA-Seq expression of tumours from whole slide images was among the industry innovations outlined at the 7th Digital Pathology and AI Congress for Europe. Created by French-American start-up Owkin, the detail of how the company’s HE2RNA model provides virtual spatialization of gene expression was detailed to online delegates by senior translational scientist…

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Article • Digital pathology

An exciting new era for tissue microarrays

A new generation of tissue microarrays are delivering more efficient and time-effective solutions to answering complex clinical and scientific questions. Sitting at the core of this new approach is digital pathology, allowing specific and targeted analysis of small areas of tissue.

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Article • Applications of machine learning

Training AI to predict outcomes for cancer patients

Predicting cancer outcome could help with a clinical decision regarding a patient’s treatment. In his keynote speech during the online ‘7th Digital Pathology and AI Congress: Europe’, Johan Lundin, Research Director at the Institute for Molecular Medicine Finland (FIMM) at the University of Helsinki and Professor of Medical Technology at Karolinska Institute, discussed ‘Outcome and…

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News • CT & ultrasound fusion

‘Virtual biopsies’ could replace tissue biopsies in the future

A new advanced computing technique using routine medical scans to enable doctors to take fewer, more accurate tumour biopsies, has been developed by cancer researchers at the University of Cambridge. This is an important step towards precision tissue sampling for cancer patients to help select the best treatment. In future the technique could even replace clinical biopsies with ‘virtual…

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Article • Glioma detection

Breakthrough liquid biopsy test to detect mutations in brain tumours

Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston have developed a novel blood test using an enhanced form of liquid biopsy capable of detecting the most common types of genetic mutations that occur in glioma brain tumors. The test is easy to use, inexpensive, produces results rapidly, and can be performed in most clinical laboratories. The researchers believe that the blood test has…

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News • CARS & multiphoton microscopy

Multimodal imaging to detect cancerous cells faster and more accurately

Improving the detection of cancerous cells during surgery – this is the goal of the European research project CARMEN. The research institutes Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) from Germany and Multitel asbl from Belgium work together with companies from both countries, JenLab GmbH, Deltatec, and LaserSpec, to develop a novel, compact and multimodal imaging system. This could even allow the…

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News • Toxins in the gut

Connecting our microbiome to breast cancer development

A microbe found in the colon and commonly associated with the development of colitis and colon cancer also may play a role in the development of some breast cancers, according to new research from investigators with the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and its Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy. Breast tissue cells exposed to this toxin retain a long-term memory, increasing the…

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News • Cancer research

Exploring the benefits of anticoagulants against brain metastases

Brain metastases can only develop if cancer cells first exit the fine blood vessels and enter into the brain tissue. To facilitate this step, cancer cells influence blood clotting, as scientists from the German Cancer Research Center and Heidelberg University Hospital have now been able to show in mice. The cancer cells actively promote the formation of clots, which helps them to arrest in the…

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News • HPV vaccines and pap smear tests

Keys to prevent many cervical cancer cases

Hundreds of thousands of cervical cancer cases per year could be prevented through widespread vaccinations for human papillomavirus (HPV) and annual pap smear tests, says an expert at a top American hospital, Cleveland Clinic, marking Cervical Cancer Awareness Month in January. Dr. Robert DeBernardo, Section Head of Gynecologic Oncology and Vice Chair Subspecialty Care for Women’s Health at…

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News • Tackling colon cancer

Researchers find 'Achilles’ heel' of cancer stem cells

Colon cancer stem cells have one weak spot: the enzyme Mll1. An MDC team led by Walter Birchmeier has now shown in Nature Communications that blocking this protein prevents the development of new tumors in the body. Since colonoscopies were introduced in Germany for early cancer detection, the number of diagnoses of advanced cancer every year has decreased, as precancerous lesions can now be…

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News • Stepstone for new treatments

Regulatory RNAs promote breast cancer metastasis

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) scientists have discovered a gene-regulating snippet of RNA that may contribute to the spread of many breast cancers. In animal experiments, the researchers could reduce the growth of metastatic tumors with a molecule designed to target that RNA and trigger its destruction. The same strategy, they say, could be used to develop a new breast cancer treatment for…

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News • Cardiac complications

Immunotherapy drugs can lead to higher risk of heart problems

A study of over a thousand cancer patients treated with immunotherapy drugs has found these patients are at greater risk of heart problems, including death from heart attack or stroke. The patients had either lung cancer or malignant melanoma (a type of skin cancer), for which immune checkpoint inhibitors such as a programmed cell death-1 (PD1) inhibitors or cytotoxic T-lymphocyte-associated…

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Video • Resistance pulse

New study reveals how melanoma cells survive targeted therapies

In recent years, targeted therapies have cemented their place as some of the most important tools in cancer treatment. These medicines are designed to block specific signals that tumor cells use to grow and spread, while at the same time leaving normal cells unharmed. Targeted therapies can significantly extend patients’ lives, but the benefits are often only temporary. Over time, many cancers…

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News • Childhood cancer

Molecular super-enhancers determine progression of neuroblastomas

Childhood neuroblastomas display extreme differences in the way they develop: they can shrink spontaneously or spread aggressively to healthy tissue. It is molecular super-enhancers that activate the regulatory circuits that steer the tumor down one path or the other. These are the findings of research conducted by scientists from the Hopp Children's Cancer Center Heidelberg (KiTZ), the German…

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News • Brain rejuvenation

Drug reverses age-related mental decline within days

Just a few doses of an experimental drug can reverse age-related declines in memory and mental flexibility in mice, according to a new study by UC San Francisco scientists. The drug, called ISRIB, has already been shown in laboratory studies to restore memory function months after traumatic brain injury (TBI), reverse cognitive impairments in Down Syndrome, prevent noise-related hearing loss,…

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Article • Clinical decision support

AI deep learning of PET/CT images to support NSCLC treatment

A software tool to predict the most effective therapy for non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) developed by applying deep learning artificial intelligence (AI) to positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) images has been developed by researchers at H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, Florida. The tool is designed to provide a noninvasive, accurate method to…

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Article • AI-assisted MRI segmentation

Deep learning boost for prostate cancer workflow

Prostate cancer radiotherapy treatments guided by MRI are increasingly being explored to help improve patient outcomes and reduce toxicities after treatment. However, this development is being held back as the MRI approach is labour intensive and requires daily adaptive treatment planning, placing significant additional demands on clinician time and oncology services. To address this, a team of…

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News • New mechanism of action

A small-molecule degrades a cancer-promoting

"Molecular glue degraders" are a new class of cancer drugs, which "glue" cancer growth-promoting proteins directly to the molecular machinery of a cell's disposal system, leading to the subsequent degradation of the cancer-driving proteins and anti-tumor activity. Scientists from Heidelberg and USA have now deciphered another mechanism whereby a small molecule can degrade a…

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News • Improving imaging

Light up diseases with 'photonic lanterns'

Researchers at Heriot-Watt University have developed a new technique that will allow medical professionals to see disease deep inside the human body in 10 times more detail. Professor Robert Thomson and his team want to improve endoscopies, when long, thin optical fibres are used to look inside the body. The new technique will open up a route to unprecedented imaging resolution, says Thomson, and…

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News • Downsized imaging

Signals from a miniature MRI unit

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is indispensable in medical diagnostics. However, MRI units are large and expensive to acquire and operate. With smaller and cost-efficient systems, MRI would be more flexible and more people could benefit from the technique. Such miniature MRI units generate a much weaker signal that is difficult to analyze, though. Researchers at the Göttingen Max Planck…

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News • Intratumoral B cells

Another side to cancer immunotherapy?

Scientists report on their detailed look at B cells' presence inside tumors. B cells represent the other major arm of the adaptive immune system, besides T cells, and could offer opportunities for new treatments against some kinds of cancers.

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Article • Immunotherapy, iRecist and complications

Lung cancer imaging (in a post-Covid world)

The evolving area of immunotherapies in lung cancer and the role of iRecist treatment assessment protocols were investigated during a virtual session organised by the British Institute of Radiology (BIR). Consultant radiologist Dr Charlie Sayer, specialist in lung cancer imaging at the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust, South of England, focused on immunotherapies, the limitations of…

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Article • Finding therapeutic targets

Pancreatic cancer: Seeking viable treatment strategies

Pancreatic cancer has the worst survival rate of any cancers, with immunotherapies currently offering negligible treatment benefits for patients. To help identify new therapeutic approaches, researchers from the University of Oxford have been focusing on leukocyte infiltration as a prognostic marker of the disease. Their study and findings were outlined by Dr Shivan Sivakumar during a session…

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Article • Profiling the coronavirus

Experts unlock Covid-19 secrets

Experts have identified two distinct immunological and cellular profiles in the lungs of Covid-19 patients which they believe could help define treatment pathways. From some of the earliest Covid-19 autopsies conducted in Europe, Swiss-based researchers have performed integrative digital pathology and transcriptomic analyses of lung tissues of 16 coronavirus patients who died from respiratory…

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News • Norwegian healthcare region

Digital pathology added to existing enterprise imaging solution

International medical imaging IT and cybersecurity company Sectra has signed a digital pathology contract with the Norwegian healthcare region Helse Vest RHF. The healthcare region already uses Sectra’s enterprise imaging solution, which will now include digital pathology. The region-wide solution allows Helse Vest to share resources among healthcare providers, and using the same system for…

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News • Block of erythrocytes formation

SARS-CoV-2 might attack red marrow

Specialists from the Department of Fundamental Medicine of Far Eastern Federal University (FEFU) with Russian and Japanese colleagues have probed into mechanisms of COVID-19 inside-the-body distribution linked to erythrocytes damaging.

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News • Cancer research

New therapeutic approach against leukemia

Leukemia frequently originates from the so-called leukemic stem cell, which resides in a tumor promoting and protecting niche within the bone marrow. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried, Germany, have found a new way to make these cells vulnerable by specifically dislodging these cells from their niches.

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News • At the heart of science

Scientific research has to be ‘passion-driven’, says Nobel Prize winner

Scientists cannot be expected to drop everything they’re working on to turn their attention to beating COVID-19, according to the winner of the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine, Professor Sir Peter Ratcliffe. Speaking before he delivered the prestigious Michel Clavel lecture to the 32nd EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics, which was due to take place…

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Article • Alternative for mammography

Breast cancer screening: Does the future belong to the abbreviated MRI?

Is mammography still the best method for breast cancer screening? For a number of breast cancers, the latest scientific findings suggest otherwise. For more than a decade, Professor Christiane Kuhl MD, Director of the Clinic for Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology at the University Hospital RWTH Aachen, has researched the use of MRI in breast cancer screening.

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News • One mouse at a time

New approach to testing potential drugs for children’s cancers

A team of researchers in the US and Australia have developed a way of testing potential drugs for children’s cancers so as to take account of the wide genetic diversity of these diseases. In new research to be presented at the 32th EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics, Professor Peter Houghton, director of the Greehey Children’s Cancer Research Institute (San…

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Article • Mass spectrometry-based metabolomics

A new technique to understand metabolic pathways

Mass spectrometry-based metabolomics has emerged as a powerful tool to help study chemical ecology. Recent advances in the technique make it possible to study microbial interactions from complex communities. Laia Castaño-Espriu outlined the role and benefits of MS in this context in her presentation ‘Analysis of microbial ecology by mass spectrometry-based metabolomics techniques’, at the…

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Video • List by top clinicians and researchers

Top 10 medical innovations for 2021

An up-and-coming gene therapy for blood disorders. A new class of medications for cystic fibrosis. Increased access to telemedicine. These are some of the innovations that will enhance healing and change healthcare in the coming year, according to a distinguished panel of clinicians and researchers from Cleveland Clinic. In conjunction with the 2020 Medical Innovation Summit, Cleveland Clinic…

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News • For the development of CRISPR/Cas9

Nobel Prize in Chemistry goes to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the Nobel Prize in Chemistry 2020 to Emmanuelle Charpentier from the Max Planck Unit for the Science of Pathogens, Berlin, Germany, and Jennifer A. Doudna from the University of California, Berkeley, USA, “for the development of a method for genome editing”, more commonly known as the 'gene scissors' CRISPR/Cas9.

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Video • Cell coordination explored

Why wound-healing comes in waves

How do cells in our bodies ask for directions? Without any maps to guide them, they still know where to go to heal wounds and renew our bodies. Edouard Hannezo and his group at the Institute of Science and Technology Austria (IST Austria) together with Tsuyoshi Hirashima and his group at Kyoto University just published a new study in Nature Physics that shows how mechanical and chemical waves…

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News • Tiny chip, huge benefits

Researchers develop the world’s smallest ultrasound detector

Researchers at Helmholtz Zentrum München and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed the world’s smallest ultrasound detector. It is based on miniaturized photonic circuits on top of a silicon chip. With a size 100 times smaller than an average human hair, the new detector can visualize features that are much smaller than previously possible, leading to what is known as…

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Article • High-capacity digital image analysis

Spatial statistics extract subvisual features

Spatial analytics offers greater clarity in the assessment of tumours beyond routine microscopic analysis. High-capacity digital image analysis enables new methods of spatial statistics to extract features not immediately distinguishable by visual inspection. These subvisual features reflect complex properties, such as intratumour heterogeneity and have the additional benefit that they can target…

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News • Study establishes link

Growth factor IGF-1 increases risk for several cancers

A study of almost 400,000 British participants has identified a new link between raised levels of the growth factor IGF-1 and increased thyroid cancer risk and has confirmed associations with breast, prostate and colorectal cancer. This could lead to new preventative strategies, including diet and lifestyle interventions.

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Article • Blood poisoning

Exploring the importance and challenges of early sepsis diagnosis

On the occasion of this year's World Sepsis Day, we spoke with Elena Sukhacheva, Ph.D., director of medical and scientific affairs at Beckman Coulter, about the status quo and outlook on sepsis diagnostics. With the severity of sepsis symptoms, it’s easy to comprehend why it is invaluable to diagnose this disease properly and in a timely manner. Dr Sukhacheva takes an in-depth look at…

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News • Fossilised findings

Study shows: Even dinosaurs had cancer

A collaboration led by the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) and McMaster University has led to the discovery and diagnosis of an aggressive malignant bone cancer — an osteosarcoma — for the first time ever in a dinosaur. Examples of malignant cancers are very rare in the fossil record. The paper was published in the journal The Lancet Oncology. The cancerous bone in question is the fibula (lower…

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News • G-quadruplexes

Quadruple DNA structures in breast cancer found

Four stranded DNA structures – known as G-quadruplexes – have been shown to play a role in certain types of breast cancer for the first time, providing a potential new target for personalised medicine, say scientists at the University of Cambridge. In 1953, Cambridge researchers Francis Crick and James Watson co-authored a study published in the journal Nature which showed that DNA in our…

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News • Dietary dangers

Sugar consumption: a driving factor in onset of pancreatic cancer

A diet high in sugar increases the likelihood of developing pancreatic cancer in some people and can also drive the aggressive growth of tumours, a new study finds. During this study, researchers from the University of Surrey, VIB-KU Leuven, Belgium and the Babraham Institute in Cambridge, sought to understand the impact of diet on the development and progression of pancreatic cancer. This rare…

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News • Cytosponge research

‘Pill on a string’ test could transform oesophageal cancer diagnosis

A ‘pill on a string’ test can identify ten times more people with Barrett’s oesophagus than the usual GP route, a new study shows. The test, which can be carried out by a nurse in a GP surgery, is also better at picking up abnormal cells and potentially early-stage cancer. Barrett’s oesophagus is a condition that can lead to oesophageal cancer in a small number of people. It’s usually…

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News • Theranostics

Magnetic gold nanohybrid particles will help fight cancer

A team of scientists at the Russian National University of Science and Technology MISiS, together with colleagues from Russia and Germany, have presented a detailed study of magnetite-gold nanohybrids. In the future, such nanoparticles can help in theranostics — the diagnostics and subsequent therapy of oncological diseases. The results of the work have been published in the Journal of…

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News • Pathological regression of lymph nodes

Improved grading system to predict esophageal cancer survival

A group of researchers led by Osaka University established a new pathological grading system to evaluate the therapeutic effect of neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NAC) for metastatic lymph nodes (LNs) removed in esophageal cancer (EC) surgery, demonstrating that the system predicts recurrence and prognosis in EC patients better than conventional systems. Their research results were published in Annals…

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News • ER-positive tumour BC

Drug target for aggressive breast cancer found

A team of British and American scientists have discovered a way to slow the growth of breast cancer stem cells in the lab. The study led by Dr Bruno Simões and Professor Rob Clarke from The University of Manchester could eventually lead to combination drug therapies on previously untreatable breast cancers. Around three quarters of women who have breast cancer have what are known as oestrogen…

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Video • Cell invasion

Filopodia: The long 'fingers' of highly invasive lung cancer

Tiny finger-like projections called filopodia drive invasive behavior in a rare subset of lung cancer cells, researchers at Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University have found. Adam Marcus’ lab has developed innovative techniques for separating “leaders” and “followers,” subpopulations of tumor cells that cooperate during the process of metastasis. The lab’s new analysis of what…

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News • Triple-negative breast cancer

Target validation for drug development against aggressive breast cancer

At around 30.5 percent, breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in countries of the industrialized world. The number of cases has doubled since the 1980s: about 69,000 times a year women are diagnosed with breast cancer. Triple-negative breast cancer is a particularly aggressive form of breast cancer. As important receptors are missing here, treatment options and prognosis for such…

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News • Cross-presenting dendritic cells

How breast cancer sneaks past local immune defenses

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) Associate Professor Mikala Egeblad and her colleagues describe a newly understood way by which breast cancer cells sabotage a key player in the body’s immune system. That key player provides local immune surveillance by activating killer T-cells, but if it cannot mature and do its job, breast cancer cells can escape detection from the immune system,…

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Article • The difficulty? Unpredictability in the entire process

Immunotherapy for lung cancer patients

Better outcomes, more favourable prognoses – oncologists and their lung cancer patients didn’t dare to dream about it. Finally, there might be hope. The so-called checkpoint inhibitors (immunotherapy drug) have been used successfully, albeit not for every patient. They are a double-edged sword, with risks as well as opportunities, as explained by Professor Cornelia Schäfer-Prokop.

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News • Hidden in our genes

scHOT: Discovering the fate of cell development

As cells develop, changes in how our genes interact determines their fate. Differences in these genetic interactions can make our cells robust to infection from viruses or make it possible for our immune cells to kill cancerous ones. Understanding how these gene associations work across the development of human tissue and organs is important for the creation of medical treatments for complex…

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News • Neurodegeneration research

Developing a rapid drug-testing platform for Alzheimer’s

A gene has been discovered that can naturally suppress the signs of Alzheimer’s Disease in human brain cells, in research led by Queen Mary University of London. The scientists have also developed a new rapid drug-screening system for treatments that could potentially delay or prevent the disease. The main challenge in testing Alzheimer’s drugs in clinical trials is that participants need to…

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News • Oncology

How cancer spreads in blood

A new study sheds light on proteins in particles called extracellular vesicles, which are released by tumor cells into the bloodstream and promote the spread of cancer. The findings suggest how a blood test involving these vesicles might be used to diagnose cancer in the future, avoiding the need for invasive surgical biopsies.

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News • Lesion segregation

Explaining the extreme complexity of mutations in tumor genomes

Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the Universities of Cambridge and Edinburgh have been studying the evolution of tumors following chemical damage. They discovered that the DNA lesions caused by the chemical are not eliminated immediately, but are passed on unrepaired over several rounds of cell division. This "lesion segregation" can drive unexpectedly…

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News • New mechanism discovered

UPR: Stress raises cancer cells' chemo resistance

Resistance of cancer cells against therapeutic agents is a major cause of treatment failure, especially in recurrent diseases. An international team around the biochemists Robert Ahrends from the University of Vienna and Jan Medenbach from the University of Regensburg identified a novel mechanism of chemoresistance which has now been published in "Nature Communications". It is driven by…

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News • Viral on­co­logy

Kaposi Sarcoma: Answers to a longstanding enigma

The oncogenic herpesvirus (HHV8 or KSHV) causes a cancer known as Kaposi’s Sarcoma. An international team of scientists led by the University of Helsinki has discovered key factors that control the genome maintenance and replication of a virus responsible for lymphatic vascular cancer. Kaposi Sarcoma (KS) is the most common cancer among Aids patients and it is often seen in sub Saharan and…

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News • BTK inhibitor vs. respiratory distress

Off-label cancer drug shows promise against severe COVID-19

Early data from a clinical study suggest that blocking the Bruton tyrosine kinase (BTK) protein provided clinical benefit to a small group of patients with severe COVID-19. Researchers observed that the off-label use of the cancer drug acalabrutinib, a BTK inhibitor that is approved to treat several blood cancers, was associated with reduced respiratory distress and a reduction in the overactive…

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News • Cancer research

Lymph node analysis to hunt down metastases

What makes tumor cells turn murderous? The Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine ITEM is investigating the mechanisms of metastasis formation – and searching for approaches for new treatments in the fight against cancer. Among other things, the research team at Fraunhofer ITEM has developed a method that enables them to analyze entire lymph nodes.

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News • Teixobactin against superbugs

Researchers find 'resistance resistant' antibiotic

University of Melbourne researchers are finding ways to beat dangerous superbugs with ‘resistance resistant’ antibiotics, and it could help in the fight against coronavirus (COVID-19) complications. As bacteria evolve, they develop strategies that undermine antibiotics and morph into ‘superbugs’ that can resist most available treatments and cause potentially lethal infections. The…

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News • Immune cell monitoring

AI could predict risk of lung cancer recurrence

Computer scientists working with pathologists have trained an artificial intelligence (AI) tool to determine which patients with lung cancer have a higher risk of their disease coming back after treatment. The AI tool was able to differentiate between immune cells and cancer cells, enabling researchers to build a detailed picture of how lung cancers evolve in response to the immune system in…

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News • Experts express concerns

EDQM Blood Guide could make Europe more dependent on US plasma

The Plasma Protein Therapeutics Association (PPTA) is concerned about the recommendations contained in 20th version of Blood Guide of The European Directorate for the Quality of Medicines (EDQM) which aims to harmonise standards and recommendations on blood collection, preparation, and the use of blood and blood components. This Guide, if applied, will have a negative impact on the availability…

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News • New gene therapy approach

Tumor-tropic technology for targeted cancer therapy

Toshiba Corporation and a team led by Professor Yozo Nakazawa at the Department of Pediatrics, Shinshu University, have together developed a “tumor-tropic liposome technology” for gene therapy. The technology uses unique, nano-sized biodegradable liposomes developed by Toshiba to accurately and efficiently deliver therapeutic genes to targeted cancer cells, and achieves safer gene delivery…

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News • From physical to computational staining

Deep learning accurately stains digital biopsy H&E slides

Tissue biopsy slides stained using hematoxylin and eosin (H&E) dyes are a cornerstone of histopathology, especially for pathologists needing to diagnose and determine the stage of cancers. A research team led by MIT scientists at the Media Lab, in collaboration with clinicians at Stanford University School of Medicine and Harvard Medical School, now shows that digital scans of these biopsy…

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News • Two-way magnetic resonance tuning

New double-contrast technique picks up small tumors on MRI

Early detection of tumors is extremely important in treating cancer. A new technique developed by researchers at the University of California, Davis, offers a significant advance in using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) to pick out even very small tumors from normal tissue. The work is published in the journal Nature Nanotechnology. Chemical probes that produce a signal on MRI can be used to…

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News • Robotic innovation

Micro robot rolls deep into the body

A team of scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems (MPI-IS) in Stuttgart invented a tiny microrobot that resembles a white blood cell travelling through the circulatory system. It has the shape, the size and the moving capabilities of leukocytes and could perhaps be well on its way – in a rolling motion of course – to revolutionize the minimally invasive treatment of…

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News • HNSCC diagnostics

Head and neck cancer: Novel prognostic biomarker could double survival

A recent study conducted by the Faculty of Medicine at The Chinese University of Hong Kong (CU Medicine) discovered a novel genetic biomarker which can predict the survival of head and neck cancer patients. There are over 0.7 million new head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) cases globally each year. However, currently there is no clinical implementation of any genetic biomarker to…

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News • Cell division

Researchers find protein that helps cancer cells to survive

In a new study, researchers from the University of Copenhagen have discovered two important functions of a protein called RTEL1 during cell division. The researchers hope that the new knowledge will help to find new cancer treatments. One of the body's most important processes is cell division, which occurs throughout life. Normal cells only have a limited number of divisions, while in cancer…

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News • Utilizing findings from cancer research

Understanding immunity to SARS-CoV-2

Why does every person react differently to an infection with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2? Why do some people have no symptoms or only mild symptoms of COVID-19, the disease which it causes? And why do some people become so severely ill that they require ventilators or even die? These questions are being investigated by Professor Mascha Binder, director of the Department of Internal Medicine IV at…

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Article • A more integrative approach to digital pathology

imCMS: The door to simple, cheap, reliable bio-stratification

Bringing molecular and digital pathology closer together through a more integrative approach can lead to clear advantages for diagnostic and research workflows. During the recent Digital Pathology and AI Congress (London), Professor Viktor Koelzer explored the benefits and paid particular attention to colorectal cancer (CRC).

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News • Cause for lack of immune defense against tumors discovered

Improving immunotherapy for cancer

Our immune system not only protects us against infection, but also against cancer. This powerful protection is based in particular on the activation of special cells of the immune system, CD8+ T cells. These cells recognize infected or cancer cells and kill them specifically. “The ability of the immune system and especially CD8+ T cells to eliminate cancer cells in tissues such as the lung, gut…

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News • Coronavirus collaterals

COVID-19 could cause 20% rise in cancer deaths

The COVID-19 pandemic could, over the next year, lead to a 20% rise in the number of deaths from people who have been newly diagnosed with cancer, according to research supported by DATA-CAN. The analysis is the first to focus on the impact of the emergency on mortality rates in people with cancer and uses data from the health records of over 3.5 million patients in England.

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News • Programmed cell death

Cellular mechanism protecting against cancer

Susanne Hellmuth and Olaf Stemmann from the Chair of Genetics at the University of Bayreuth have discovered a natural protective mechanism that leads to the programmed death of potentially diseased cells.

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News • A novel method

Precise delivery of of therapeutics into the body

A new way to deliver therapeutic proteins inside the body uses an acoustically sensitive carrier to encapsulate the proteins and ultrasound to image and guide the package to the exact location required, according to Penn State researchers.

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News • Coronavirus analysis

AI-generated design blueprints for SARS-CoV-2 vaccines published

NEC Corporation announced analysis results from efforts using AI prediction platforms to design blueprints for SARS-CoV-2 vaccines that can drive potent T-cell responses in the majority of the global population. This initiative by the scientific teams within the NEC Group to help combat outbreaks of COVID-19 and support international vaccine development efforts is led by NEC OncoImmunity (NOI) in…

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Article • Tools for practitioners

Computational pathology: Heading for personalised medicine

Computational pathology has increased applications for diagnosis, prediction of prognosis and therapy response, facilitating the movement of healthcare towards personalised medicine. Coupled with deep learning, such tools are ever more efficient and robust within research and clinical settings. The growing role of computational pathology was highlighted by Professor Andrew Janowczyk at the…

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News • Cutting the energy supply

Disrupting cellular pH balance blocks pancreatic cancer

Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys have found a new way to kill pancreatic cancer cells by disrupting their pH equilibrium. The study, published in Cancer Discovery, reports how depleting an ion transport protein lowers the pH to a point that compromises pancreatic cancer cell growth. Pancreatic cancer cells—like all cancer cells—have a constant need for energy to support their growth and…

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News • Ultrasound monitoring

'Smart bra' to detect early-stage breast cancer

Students from EPFL in Switzerland teamed up with startup IcosaMed to develop the SmartBra – the first piece of smart clothing that can be used for cancer prevention. “Our smart-clothing technology is designed to detect cancer at the earliest stages. It uses a non-invasive, painless method based on frequent ultrasound monitoring,” says Hugo Vuillet, one of the students on the development…

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News • Reprogramming viruses

From cancer to corona: UK scientists switch research focus

A team of Cardiff University scientists has switched from researching cancer to work that could help towards a vaccine for coronavirus. The team at the School of Medicine usually work on reprogramming viruses so they can target and kill cancer - but are now focusing their efforts to help in the fight against the new virus which is gripping the world. Dr Alan Parker and his team, whose work on…

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News • New sensor tech

A more reliable way to early detect lung tumours

People who are at high risk of developing lung cancer, such as heavy smokers, are routinely screened with computed tomography (CT), which can detect tumors in the lungs. However, this test has an extremely high rate of false positives, as it also picks up benign nodules in the lungs. Researchers at the Massachussetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have now developed a new approach to early…

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News • Medulloblastoma

New insights into deadly brain tumours in children

The causes of 40 percent of all cases of certain medulloblastoma – dangerous brain tumors affecting children – are hereditary. A genetic defect that occurs in 15 percent of these children plays a key role by destabilizing the production and breakdown of proteins. The researchers suspect that protein metabolism defects could be a previously underestimated cause of other types of cancer.

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News • Oncology breakthrough

Blood test detects 50+ cancer types, often before symptoms show

Researchers have developed the first blood test that can accurately detect more than 50 types of cancer and identify in which tissue the cancer originated, often before there are any clinical signs or symptoms of the disease. In a paper published in the leading cancer journal Annals of Oncology, the researchers show that the test, which could eventually be used in national cancer screening…

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News • Study offers new insights

Sepsis treatment: Destroying DNA to save the genome

Sepsis—the body's own immune response gone against it—is a major health problem worldwide. It is basically a "hyper" immune response by the body to infection or injury, and is characterized by hyperinflammation, immune system paralysis, cell death, liver and kidney failure, blood clots, and even hemorrhage. An estimated 30 million people suffer from sepsis every year, of which 20%…

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News • Microbiological big data analysis

Building a 'Microbiome Search Engine'

Big data makes big promises when it comes to providing insights into human behavior and health. The problem is how to harness the information it provides in an efficient manner. An international team of researchers has proposed a microbiome search-based method, via Microbiome Search Engine (MSE), to analyze the wealth of available health data to detect and diagnose human diseases. They published…

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Article • Coronavirus disease research

Seeking a COVID-19 antidote: the potential of ACE2

As coronavirus disease COVID-19 continues to jet and alight invisibly around the globe, scientists now report that the virus has mutated to become two strains: the older ‘S-type’ appears milder and less infectious, while the later-emerging ‘L-type’, is more aggressive, spreads more quickly, and currently accounts for about 70 per cent of cases. Worldwide, medical researchers are exploring…

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News • Cause for colorectal carcinoma

Loss of protein can drive intestinal cancer

An international team of researchers from the University of Zurich, the University Hospital Zurich, Heidelberg and Glasgow has identified a novel function for the cell death regulating protein MCL1: It is essential in protecting the intestine against cancer development – independent of bacterial-driven inflammation. These findings have implications for the use of MCL1 inhibitors, currently…

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News • Enhancing cancer imaging

New contrast agent for early diagnosis of brain metastases

A group of researchers led by Leif Schröder from the Leibniz-Forschungsinstitut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP) have found a way to detect metastases in certain types of cancer in the brain at an early stage, using only minimal amounts of contrast agent. To this end, the team uses a synthetic molecule that helps to detect the formation of new blood vessels, producing much more sophisticated…

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News • Susceptibility to future drugs

Exploiting the carelessness of cancer cells

Could the ability of cancer cells to quickly alter their genome be used as a weapon against malignant tumours? Researchers at Uppsala University have succeeded in developing a substance that has demonstrated promising results in experiments on both animal models and human cancer cells. The study is published in the journal Nature Communications.

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News • Prostate Urine Risk (PUR)

Urine test could reduce unnecessary prostate cancer biopsies

Unnecessary prostate cancer biopsies could be reduced by 60 per cent thanks to new research from the University of East Anglia (UEA). Researchers have developed new methods to identify biomarkers for prostate cancer by combining information from multiple parts of urine samples. It is hoped that the breakthrough could help large numbers of men avoid an unnecessary initial biopsy.

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News • IGF-1

Breast cancer: Growth hormone identified as probable cause

A growth hormone called insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1) is likely to play a role in the development of breast cancer, according to new research published in the leading cancer journal Annals of Oncology. IGF-1 is already known to encourage the growth and proliferation of cancer cells. Now, two analyses of information from several hundred thousand women enrolled in the UK Biobank study have…

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News • Surprising discovery

Fatty liver disease can also affect lean people

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is mostly diagnosed in overweight and obese people. However, severe forms of NAFLD can also be detected in rare genetic diseases such as lipodystrophy or in patients with HIV, putting them at a high risk for developing liver failure, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. Norbert Stefan and colleagues have now detected a yet unknown cause of NAFLD in lean…

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News • Altered chromosomes

Breast cancer: targeted therapy can lead to treatment resistance

If chromosomes are unevenly distributed or otherwise altered during cell division, this normally damages the daughter cells and impairs their viability. Not in cancer cells, however, in which chromosome instability can actually confer a growth advantage under certain circumstances. Moreover, as scientists from the German Cancer Research Center have now demonstrated in mice, changes in the…

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News • Finding new treatment options

Cancer cachexia: Help against muscle loss

Cancer cachexia often occurs in cancer patients in an advanced state. This metabolic wasting syndrome leads to severely reduced muscle mass and fat tissue, which cannot be reversed by nutritional support. Furthermore, muscle regeneration is affected during cancer cachexia due to impaired muscle stem cell function. A problem that also occurs often in the aging process. Cancer cachexia is…

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News • BCG vs tumour recurrence

Modified tuberculosis vaccine shows promise against bladder cancer

The human immune system can recognize and eliminate not only germs but also cancer cells. This is why treatments with weakened germs can help the immune system in its fight against cancer. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology in Berlin have genetically modified the tuberculosis vaccine BCG in a way that it stimulates the immune system more specifically. Consequently, the…

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News • Promising treatment target

"Partner-in-crime" of colorectal cancer discovered

A protein that helps colorectal cancer cells spread to other parts of the body could be an effective treatment target, researchers from Hokkaido University discovered. Colorectal cancer patients with an immune system-regulating protein called interleukin 6 (IL-6) are more likely to have recurring tumors that can also spread to the liver, according to research published in the journal Cancer…

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Article • X-Nuclei MRI

Oxygen provides insights into tumour metabolism

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) usually measures the magnetic moment of the hydrogen atomic nuclei arising from the spin. However, scientists at the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ) are investigating the spin of other nuclei for imaging: ‘X-nuclei imaging has a large potential for MRI imaging as the x-nuclei play an important part in many physiological processes,’ according to doctor and…

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Article • On the way to diagnostic mainstream

Liquid biopsy to advance cancer diagnosis

Liquid biopsy offers a new dimension to detection and stratification of cancer – yet the technique also faces hurdles in becoming a mainstream diagnostic approach for more personalised treatments. A critical challenge lies in identifying the extremely low concentrations of the bio-analytes of CTC (circulating tumour cells), ctDNA (circulating tumour DNA) and exosomes in the blood.

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News • Zooming in

Breast cancer map reveals how mutations shape the tumour landscape

Scientists have created one of the most detailed maps of breast cancer ever achieved, revealing how genetic changes shape the physical tumour landscape. An international team of scientists, brought together by a £20 million Grand Challenge award from Cancer Research UK, has developed intricate maps of breast tumour samples, with a resolution smaller than a single cell. These maps show how the…

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News • Cancer radiotherapy monitoring

Novel hydrogel turns pink to indicate radiation dose sweet spot

More than half of all cancer patients undergo radiation therapy and the dose is critical. Too much and the surrounding tissue gets damaged, too little and the cancer cells survive. Subhadeep Dutta and Karthik Pushpavanam, graduate students working in the lab of Kaushal Rege, Professor at Arizona State University in Tempe, and collaborators at Banner-M.D. Anderson in Gilbert, Arizona, developed a…

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News • Medulloblastoma

Brain cancer mechanism might give insights into many tumour types

A surprising discovery about a rare form of childhood brain cancer suggests a new treatment approach for that cancer – and potentially many others. Researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine have determined that the supposedly simple cancer, called medulloblastoma, forms an unexpectedly intricate network to drive its growth. Some tumor cells actually turn into another type of…

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News • Triple-negative forms impeded

Scientists stop breast cancer cells from spreading in the lab

Biologists have discovered a way to stop cells from one of the most aggressive types of breast cancer spreading in the lab. The study points towards new avenues of research to combat the devastating disease. The results of the study of Triple-Negative Breast Cancer by the team from the Universities of Manchester, Glasgow and Sheffield and funded by Breast Cancer Now are published in Oncogene.…

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News • Contrast & new biomarker

Detecting early-stage cancer with targeted MRI

A new method to detect cancer in its early stages using a targeted MRI contrast agent that binds to proteins has been identified by a team of researchers led by Georgia State University Regents’ Professor Jenny Yang. In their study, published in the journal Science Advances, Yang and her colleagues at Georgia State and Emory University describe a newly identified biomarker for detection of…

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News • Surprising side-effects

A new cancer drug (that fights obesity and diabetes, too)

Eric Prossnitz, PhD, from the University of New Mexico Health Services and his team hope to help 93 million obese Americans fight their fat. In a paper published in Science Translational Medicine, they reported that G-1, a cancer-fighting compound they discovered some years ago, reduces fat in obese mice. Although G-1 is currently in phase 1 clinical trials for cancer, Prossnitz and his team are…

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News • Novel immune checkpoint discovered

Targeting the cancer microenvironment

Researchers discover a novel checkpoint in immune cells with the potential to treat the cancer cell microenvironment. The recognition of bacterial infections or foreign substances is mediated and controlled by the human immune system. This innate and adaptive immune system comprises the most important metabolic and cellulare processes to fight against infections and other diseases. Paradoxically,…

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News • After mastectomy

Promising approach for breast regeneration

A team of researchers from Osaka University, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, and Toppan Printing Co., Ltd. succeeded in reconstructing adipose tissue balls (“mini-breasts”) with a functional vascular network using patient-derived cells, achieving a high graft survival rate in small animal models. So far, silicone breast implants were primarily used in breast reconstruction following…

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News • Updating treatments

Sugar and fat can make cancer cells harder to kill

In their quest to find new and better methods to make cancer cells more susceptible to treatment, Karin Lindkvist and her research group at Lund University in Sweden are looking into the world of molecules, using the X-rays at the MAX IV laboratory. The researchers believe that limiting the cells' access to sugar will make cancer cells more sensitive to treatment. Many of the cancer treatments…

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News • "Immune escape"

Cancer camouflage: how our immune system is duped

T cells play a huge role in our immune system's fight against modified cells in the body that can develop into cancer. Phagocytes and B cells identify changes in these cells and activate the T cells, which then start a full-blown program of destruction. This functions well in many cases – unless the cancer cells mutate and develop a kind of camouflage that let them escape the immune system…

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News • Preventive potential

Why eating yoghurt may stave off breast cancer

One of the causes of breast cancer may be inflammation triggered by harmful bacteria say researchers. Scientists say their idea – as yet unproven – is supported by the available evidence, which is that bacterial induced inflammation is linked to cancer. The paper in the journal Medical Hypotheses is by Lancaster University medical student Auday Marwaha, Professor Jim Morris from the…

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News • Functional extracellular mitochondria

Surprising discovery of a new blood component

Does the blood we thought to know so well contain elements that had been undetectable until now? The answer is yes, according to a team of researchers. The scientistts from Inserm, Université de Montpellier and the Montpellier Cancer Institute (ICM) working at the Montpellier Cancer Research Institute (IRCM), have revealed the presence of whole functional mitochondria in the blood circulation.…

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News • Carbon-13 hyperpolarised imaging

Using magnetised molecules to monitor breast cancer

A new type of scan that involves magnetising molecules allows doctors to see in real-time which regions of a breast tumour are active, according to research at the University of Cambridge. The research was now published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. This is the first time researchers have demonstrated that this scanning technique, called carbon-13 hyperpolarised imaging, can…

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News • Digitizing workflows

Dutch hospital expands imaging solution to include digital pathology

Medical imaging IT and cybersecurity company Sectra has signed a digital pathology contract with the Dutch hospital Zuyderland MC. A digital pathology workflow makes it possible to access and share images and information between departments and hospitals. Storing, reviewing and sharing digital pathology images increases efficiency in primary diagnostics and improves cancer care by facilitating…

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Video • One-size-fits-all-approach

New T-cell could make ‘universal’ cancer therapy possible

Researchers at Cardiff University have discovered a new type of killer T-cell that offers hope of a “one-size-fits-all” cancer therapy. T-cell therapies for cancer - where immune cells are removed, modified and returned to the patient’s blood to seek and destroy cancer cells - are the latest paradigm in cancer treatments. The most widely-used therapy, known as CAR-T, is personalised to each…

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News • Personalized treatment

Could B cells turn the tide in sarcoma immunotherapy?

How can the treatment of soft tissue sarcomas, these particularly resistant and aggressive forms of cancer, be improved and better personalized? An international team led by Wolf Hervé Fridman with researchers from Inserm, Sorbonne Université and Université de Paris at the Cordeliers Research Center, in collaboration with the French League against cancer and Institut Bergonié, has shown that…

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Video • Outsmarting the immune system

'Super-human’ red blood cells for precise drug delivery

A team of physicists from McMaster University has developed a process to modify red blood cells so they can be used to distribute drugs throughout the body, which could specifically target infections or treat catastrophic diseases such as cancer or Alzheimer’s. The modified red blood cells are designed to circulate in the body for several weeks at a time, seeking out specific targets including…

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News • Update improves testing

Breast cancer guideline identifies most promising therapies

The updated guideline for estrogen and progesterone receptor (ER/PgR) testing in breast cancer, published jointly by the College of American Pathologists (CAP) and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), reaffirms much of the original guidance and has more specific recommendations for handling and reporting cases with low ER expression. Globally, more than 1 million women are diagnosed…

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News • Tumour Matrisome Index (TMI)

Big data breakthrough in cancer diagnosis

A team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has discovered a new personalised tool to detect cancer, predict patient survivability and how well a cancer patient would respond to immunotherapy. This tool is a specially-designed cancer 'scorecard' to be used with the standard blood test for cancer (also known as liquid biopsy). This 'scorecard', which the team termed as…

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News • MRI & machine learning

A look into the genome of brain tumors

Researchers at Osaka University have developed a computer method that uses magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) and machine learning to rapidly forecast genetic mutations in glioma tumors, which occur in the brain or spine. The work may help glioma patients to receive more suitable treatment faster, giving better outcomes. The research was recently published in Scientific Reports. Cancer treatment…

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News • Gastric squamous-columnar junction cancer

The role of stem cells in deadly gastric SCJ cancer

A study led by scientists from Cornell University provides important new insights into a common and deadly type of gastric cancer. Incidence of this cancer, called gastric squamous-columnar junction (SCJ) cancer, also known as gastroesophageal cancer, rose 2.5 times in the United States between the 1970s and 2000s, while cases of all gastric cancers have decreased by more than 80% since the…

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News • Finding the frequency

Ultrasound selectively damages cancer cells (with the right settings)

Doctors have used focused ultrasound to destroy tumors in the body without invasive surgery for some time. However, the therapeutic ultrasound used in clinics today indiscriminately damages cancer and healthy cells alike. Most forms of ultrasound-based therapies either use high-intensity beams to heat and destroy cells or special contrast agents that are injected prior to ultrasound, which can…

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News • Big data vs. neuroblastoma

Smart algorithm finds possible treatment for childhood cancer

Using a computer algorithm, scientists at Uppsala University have identified a promising new treatment for neuroblastoma. This form of cancer in children, which occurs in specialised nerve cells in the sympathetic nervous system, may be life-threatening. In the long term the discovery, described in the latest issue of the scientific journal Nature Communications, may result in a new form of…

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News • Chasing the causes of cancer

Mapping cancer-related proteins in unprecedented detail

Researchers at the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) have gained new understandings of two key complexes of cancer-related proteins by producing the most detailed ever maps of the structures they form when they come together. The study reveals that the two protein complexes come together in cells in a series of steps that change how their individual component proteins are arranged together. It…

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Article • Lab advances against doping

A powerful tool for sports drug testing

Due to the scientific and technical developments in recombinant DNA technology and protein engineering since the early 1980s, therapeutic proteins have emerged as one of the most important classes of new pharmaceuticals. Currently, more than 200 protein and peptide based drugs have gained approval by the USA’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and many more are under preclinical or clinical…

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News • Detailed map of immune cells

The Human Blood Atlas: a mighty new tool to fight deadly diseases

A first-ever map of the human body’s immune cells has been created by scientists at SciLifeLab, providing medical research with a detailed description of the proteins in human blood. The open-access database offers medical researchers an unprecedented resource in the search for treatments for diseases. Published in the journal Science, the Blood Atlas resource is the latest database to be…

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News • Armed antibodies

Tough against cancer, gentle to the immune system

Scientists from the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK) and the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) at Tübingen University Hospital have managed to attach immunostimulatory cytokines to cancer-specific antibodies for the first time in such a way that they activate the immune response against cancer without causing a dangerous overreaction by the immune system. The research team has now been granted…

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News • Multiple myeloma therapy

Finding a formula for blood cancer vaccine

Researchers at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai have discovered a way to move precision immunotherapy forward by using genomics to inform immunotherapy for multiple myeloma, a blood cancer, according to a study published in Clinical Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, in December. This is the first study to experimentally determine which…

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News • Acoustofluidics

Saliva test to detect mouth and throat cancer earlier and easier

Unfortunately, cancers that occur in the back of the mouth and upper throat are often not diagnosed until they become advanced, partly because their location makes them difficult to see during routine clinical exams. A report in The Journal of Molecular Diagnostics describes the use of acoustofluidics, a new non-invasive method that analyzes saliva for the presence of human papilloma virus…

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News • Single cell analysis & machine learning

scPred: Finding the ‘fingerprint’ of human cells

Researchers say a new method to analyse data from individual human cells could be a step-change for diagnosing some of the most devastating diseases, including cancer and autoimmune disease. By combining single cell analysis techniques with machine learning algorithms, a team led by researchers at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research has developed a method to ‘fingerprint’ human cells.…

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Video • Exposing the enemy

New algorithm detects even the smallest cancer metastases

Teams at Helmholtz Zentrum München, LMU Munich and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed a new algorithm that enables automated detection of metastases at the level of single disseminated cancer cells in whole mice. Cancer is one of the leading causes of death worldwide. More than 90% of cancer patients die of distal metastases rather than as a direct result of the primary…

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News • Determining protein structures

3Dseq: New technique to solve biomedical puzzles

“Proteins are the workers in the cell, and it's important to know their shape,” says Chris Sander, PhD, director of Dana-Farber’s cBio Center in the Department of Data Sciences. Sander and his colleagues have now demonstrated a powerful “experimental evolution” method to discover details of protein shape and function, and the method may find uses across a very broad spectrum of…

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News • Grant for AI and genomic analysis

AI help for better diagnosis and treatment of prostate cancer

Prostate cancer is the second cause of cancer-related death in men. Currently, its diagnosis occurs via imaging and must be confirmed by biopsy. Simona Turco from the Eindhoven University of Technology (TU/e) wants to improve prostate cancer diagnosis by using machine learning algorithms to localize tumors and thereby replace entirely the necessity for biopsies. Besides, by combining this with…

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News • Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

3D model of human liver tissue for better NAFLD diagnosis

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is becoming the most common chronic liver disorder in developed countries. Histological analysis of liver tissue is the only widely accepted test for diagnosing and distinguishing different stages of NAFLD. However, this technique provides only two-dimensional images of the liver tissue in low resolution and overlooks potentially important 3D structural…

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News • Promising lab tests

Using photoacoustics for breast imaging

A new, portable breast imaging system under development in Buffalo has the potential to better identify breast cancer in women with dense breast tissue. That is among the findings of a study published in the journal IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering. The study was led by University at Buffalo researchers in collaboration with Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center and Windsong…

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Interview • The search is on

MRI contrast agents: Aiming to work without radioactivity

MRI is now indispensable for diagnosing diseases and monitoring therapies. However, the ongoing discussion on gadolinium deposits in the brain has intensified the search for alternatives. Dr Daniel Paech of the German Cancer Research Centre in Heidelberg, Germany, discussed potential solutions to acquire high-quality images without contrast agents.

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News • Malignant infantile brain tumours

​Epilepsy drug inhibits brain tumour development

Medication prescribed for a certain type of epilepsy may offer a new method for treating malignant infantile brain tumours. A specific mTOR inhibitor has the ability to cross the blood–brain barrier to both reach and attack the tumour at source. This has been demonstrated by researchers from Uppsala University, in collaboration with US and UK colleagues, whose research has now been published in…

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News • Personalized diagnostics

AI checks effectiveness of immunotherapy

Scientists from the Case Western Reserve University digital imaging lab use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to predict which lung-cancer patients will benefit from expensive immunotherapy. This is done by teaching a computer to find previously unseen changes in patterns in CT scans taken when the lung cancer is first diagnosed compared to scans taken after the first 2-3 cycles of immunotherapy…

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Article • Impressive advances reported at Intelligent Health 2019

China pushes the use of medical AI

September: Basel, Switzerland: ‘Intelligent Health 2019’, a conference dedicated to artificial intelligence (AI) in medicine, underlined the growing interest by the rising number of attendees – 1,400 in 2018, its first year, to 2,027 this year. With examples of AI use from around the world, the common thread throughout was how AI can serve humankind by enabling better understanding of…

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News • Biological aging

Wearables link insufficient sleep to cardiovascular disease risk

Getting a good night’s sleep is important and insufficient sleep has been linked to poor health in many studies. Analysing data collected from wearable trackers, researchers from the SingHealth Duke-NUS Institute of Precision Medicine (PRISM) and the National Heart Centre Singapore (NHCS) recently demonstrated that chronic sleep deprivation is associated with increased cardiovascular disease…

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News • Nanoswarm

Tiny transporters deliver treatment to stroke patients

Swarms of nanoparticles which are 15,000 times smaller than a pinhead may be able to deliver vital drugs to the brain, offering new hope to patients in the early stages of a stroke. The research, carried out at The University of Manchester, shows that tiny vesicles called liposomes, just 100 nanometres in diameter can translocate through the damaged blood brain barrier following stroke. And that…

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News • Presented at the NCRI cancer conference

Simple blood test for early detection of breast cancer

Breast cancer could be detected up to five years before there are any clinical signs of it, using a blood test that identifies the body’s immune response to substances produced by tumour cells, according to new research presented at the 2019 NCRI Cancer Conference. Cancer cells produce proteins called antigens that trigger the body to make antibodies against them – autoantibodies. Researchers…

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Article • Growing brain tumours in a petri dish

3D organoids for glioblastoma patients

Research that might lead to new treatment options and longer survival for patients with glioblastoma – a malignant and particularly invasive type of brain tumour – is ongoing at ZHT, the Centre for Brain Tumours, and the Wilhelm Sander Neuro-oncology Treatment Unit at University Hospital Regensburg, which form one of the largest and most modern facilities for brain tumour treatment in…

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Article • Positive findings in PD-1 inhibitor immunotherapy

Hope increases for HIV cancer patients

Advances in antiretroviral therapy mean that today, people infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) can expect a healthy and long life. However, living with HIV does increase the risk of cancer. The reasons for this are multiple and include behavioural risk factors (smoking etc.) but many cancers can be attributed to the effects the virus has on the immune system, specifically its…

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Article • Robotic assistance for middle and inner ear procedures

Cochlear implant microsurgery progresses

Unlike other surgical specialties, ear nose and throat (ENT) has been poorly served by the introduction of robotic platforms to enhance procedures. Since the da Vinci system first gained FDA approval in 2000, robot-assisted surgery has become commonplace in many specialties, including neurology, urology, etc. with numerous other general surgical applications. However, existing systems including…

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Video • Cancerous construction

Blocking the path of cancer ‘super-highways’

A key mechanism controlling tissue structure, which could help identify drugs that make it harder for cancer cells to spread, has been identified by researchers at the Francis Crick Institute. The two studies, published in Nature Materials and PLOS Computational Biology, explain the mechanism that causes changes in the structure of tissues. Using experimental and computational biology, the…

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News • Iron dependent cell death

Ferroptosis could be key for new anticancer approach

A team of researchers lead by Helmholtz Zentrum München and the University of Würzburg identified an enzyme as a novel and strong inhibitor of ferroptosis, the iron dependent form of cell death: ferroptosis suppressor protein-1, short FSP1. This protein is expressed in a variety of cancer cell lines and therefore represents an attractive drug target for cancer treatment. In fact, the first FSP1…

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News • Major global study reveals

Colorectal, pancreatic cancer rates up 10% in last 30 years

The results of a major study across 195 countries, presented at UEG Week Barcelona 2019, indicate that global death rates for pancreatic cancer and incidence rates for colorectal cancer both increased by 10% between 1990 and 2017. The Global Burden of Disease study, is the first to provide comprehensive worldwide estimates of the burden, epidemiological features and risk factors of a number of…

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News • Metabolic mystery solved

Why fatty livers are more susceptible to cancer

Fatty liver disease is contributing to an increase in liver cancer and basic scientists at The University of Texas Health Science at Houston (UTHealth) have new insight as to why. In the journal Cancer Research, the investigators report that in mouse models, excess fat impairs the ability of a tumor-suppressing protein named HNF4α to do its job. “This study provides potential mechanisms for…

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News • Natural nanocapsules

A new approach for tackling superbugs – without antibiotics

Scientists have uncovered a novel antibiotic-free approach that could help prevent and treat one of the most widespread bacterial pathogens, using nanocapsules made of natural ingredients. Helicobacter pylori is a bacterial pathogen carried by 4.4 billion people worldwide, with the highest prevalence in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. Although the majority of infections show no symptoms,…

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News • Targeted therapy for pancreatic carcinoma

Hitting cancer with 'homing' radioactive molecules

Pancreatic cancer is one of the leading causes of cancer‑related deaths worldwide. Patients with pancreatic cancer often receive chemotherapy or radiation therapy, which are not always effective and can have toxic side effects. In a collaborative research between Osaka University and the University of Heidelberg, researchers are exploring a new method of treatment that brings powerful yet…

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News • Radiology research

Tuned X-rays for safer, more precise cancer radiation therapy

X-rays could be tuned to deliver a more effective punch that destroys cancer cells and not harm the body, researches from Kyoto University find. Gadolinium delivered into cancer cells releases killer electrons when hit by specially tuned X-rays. The approach, published in the journal Scientific Reports, could pave the way towards a new cancer radiation therapy. “Our method opens up the…

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News • New transfection approach

Immunotherapy: The 'FedEx and UPS equivalent of DNA delivery'

Immunotherapy is a promising cancer treatment that uses genetically modified immune cells to fight cancer. It can be used as a primary treatment or in combination with other treatments such as radiation and chemotherapy to slow down or stop the growth of cancer cells and prevent them from spreading to other parts of the body. Chimeric Antigen Receptor (CAR)-T cell therapy, for instance, is a…

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News • When painkillers won't help

A new approach to pancreas pain treatment

One of the worst symptoms associated with inflammation or cancer of the pancreas is severe chronic pain. Pancreatic pain is difficult to treat, because many painkillers prove ineffective in pancreatic patients. In a recent study, a team at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) discovered the cause of this phenomenon for the first time: a particular neuroenzyme in the body is present in the…

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News • Tiny biomaterials

On the way to safer nanomedicine

Tiny particles that can fight cancer or that can easily pass through any interface within our body are a great promise for medicine. But there is little knowledge thus far about what exactly will happen to nanoparticles within our tissues and whether or not they can cause disease by themselves. Within an international research consortium, Empa scientists have now developed guidelines that should…

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News • Chemo side effects

Breakthrough in cancer hair loss treatment discovered

Scientists have determined a new way to protect the hair follicle from chemotherapy in an effort to prevent hair loss as a result of cancer treatments. Researchers based at The University of Manchester have discovered a new strategy for how to protect hair follicles from chemotherapy, which could lead to new treatments that prevent chemotherapy-induced hair loss – arguably one of the most…

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News • Targeted treatment

New nanomedi­cine for efficient cancer chemo­ther­apy

Researchers at the University of Helsinki in collaboration with researchers from Åbo Akademi University (Finland) and Huazhong University of Science and Technology (China) have developed a new anti-cancer nanomedicine for targeted cancer chemotherapy. This new nano-tool provides a new approach to use cell-based nanomedicines for efficient cancer chemotherapy. Exosomes contain various molecular…

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News • A STAMP with high value

New tech makes biopsies less invasive, more informative

A team of researchers has developed a novel technology that could sensitively and accurately detect and classify cancer cells, as well as determine the disease aggressiveness from the least invasive biopsies. With this new technology called STAMP (Sequence-Topology Assembly for Multiplexed Profiling), comprehensive disease information can be obtained faster, at a much earlier stage of the…

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News • Feasibility study

Liquid biopsy to complement early breast cancer screening

Investigators from the Biomedical Research Institute of Malaga [(IBIMA)-CIMES-UMA, Malaga Spain] and collaborators have published the first pilot study to examine the use of a non-invasive liquid biopsy in early diagnosis of breast cancer. This study was unique in that the ctDNA analyses was performed before any invasive diagnostic procedure or treatment. To achieve their goal, the researchers…

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News • Methylation of microRNA

Is it cancer? New method could tell the difference

Levels of molecules associated with genetic function, such as microRNA, can be an important indicator of abnormal activity associated with cancer. However, little is known about how different molecules are altered in cancerous cells. Now, researchers from Japan have found a new way of distinguishing cancerous from non-cancerous tissues. In a study published in Nature Communications, researchers…

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News • Draft guidance

FDA: Include male breast cancer patients in trials

In its latest draft guidance, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) encourages inclusion of males in breast cancer clinical trials. Historically, males either have not been included in clinical trials for drugs to treat breast cancer or inclusion of males in those trials has been very limited; when finalized, the draft guidance will provide clarity for industry regarding clinical…

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Article • Wishlist

Cancer prevention scrutinised

The latest study by the German Society for Haematology and Oncology (DGHO), ‘Prognosis for population-based morbidity for common cancers in Germany – impact on provision’ has made it clear that due to demographic developments in Germany and to medical advances in oncology, the requirements for cancer patients’ care are ever more diverse. The increase in newly diagnosed cancer patients is…

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News • Genetic mutations

'Invade and evade': Deciphering pancreatic cancer’s tactics

Two known gene mutations induce pathways that enhance pancreatic cancer’s ability to invade tissues and evade the immune system. Researchers report the molecular details of this process providing insights into druggable targets for immunotherapies. Mutations in the genes KRAS and TP53 are closely linked to pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, by far the most common type of pancreatic cancer.…

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News • Stem cell regeneration

Drug accelerates recovery after chemo, radiation

A drug developed by US physician-scientists and chemists speeds up the regeneration of mouse and human blood stem cells after exposure to radiation. If the results can be replicated in humans, the compound could help people recover quicker from chemotherapy, radiation and bone marrow transplants. The study, published in Nature Communications, also sheds light on the basic biology behind blood…

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News • Watching the change

Predicting cancer risk with computational electrodynamics

Researchers from Northwestern University are using Argonne supercomputers to advance the development of an optical microscopy technique that can predict and quantify cancer risks at extremely early stages. The basic principle driving Allen Taflove’s computational electrodynamics research — which bears the potential to transform how we diagnose, and possibly treat, various forms of cancer —…

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Article • Multiscale integrative cross-disciplinary imaging

Linking pathology and radiology workflows

Pathologic-radiologic correlation is already utilised in various settings as a tool to assess the interpretive performance of imaging studies and identify radiologic features corresponding to histologic findings. However, correlative assessment is currently limited mainly to the fields of research and quality assurance, and is generally not a routine element of the radiologist or pathologist…

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News • Therapy-resistant cells

Von Hippel-Lindau: How to kill hereditary cancer

Researchers identified how to kill therapy-resistant cells in hypoxic tumors and in cells arising in the von Hippel-Lindau hereditary cancer. In a recent publication in PNAS, the research group identified how to kill therapy-resistant cells in hypoxic tumors and in cells arising in the von Hippel-Lindau (VHL) hereditary cancer.

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Article • Personalized medicine

Exploring the potential of High-Content Screening

The key challenges and opportunities surrounding High-Content Screening have been outlined in a presentation to leading scientists and technologists at a major lab conference. Speaking at the recent SLASEurope 2019 event in Barcelona, Professor Matthias Nees from the Institute of Biomedicine in the Department of Biology at the University of Turku, Finland, outlined the potential of High-Content…

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News • Hidden chemistry

This flower might hold the key to killing cancer cells

Researchers at the University of Birmingham have shown that it’s possible to produce a compound with anti-cancer properties directly from feverfew – a common flowering garden plant. The team was able to extract the compound from the flowers and modify it so it could be used to kill chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) cells in the laboratory. Feverfew is grown in many UK gardens, and also…

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News • Personalised medicine

Why digital twins could be the ideal therapy testbed

Advanced computer models of diseases can be used to improve diagnosis and treatment. The goal is to develop the models to “digital twins” of individual patients. Those twins may help to computationally identify and try the best medication, before actually treating a patient. The models are the result of an international study, published in the open access journal Genome Medicine.

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News • Dose reduction

Increasing precision for radiotherapy

A new way of concentrating radiotherapy dose in tumours, while minimising damage to healthy cells, has been proposed in research led by scientists at the University of Strathclyde. The study proposes that focusing high-energy particle beams on a small spot deep inside the body could potentially enable clinicians to target cancerous tumours precisely, while reducing the dose to surrounding tissue.…

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News • UV exposure

Spike in female skin cancer rates reveals alarming tanning trends

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the U.S., affecting one in five Americans in their lifetime. Limiting exposure to ultraviolet radiation is the number one way individuals can reduce their risk of skin cancer, though new data suggests that UV exposure is on the rise, particularly among Caucasian girls and young women. Research presented at the 2019 American Academy of Dermatology Summer…

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Video • Drug delivery, microsurgery

Microbots show promise in tumor treatment

Targeting medical treatment to an ailing body part is a practice as old as medicine itself. A Band-Aid is placed on a skinned knee. Drops go into itchy eyes. A broken arm goes into a cast. But often what ails us is inside the body and is not so easy to reach. In such cases, a treatment like surgery or chemotherapy might be called for. A pair of researchers in Caltech's Division of Engineering and…

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News • Global health

WHO updates list of essential medicines and diagnostics

The World Health Organisation's (WHO) Essential Medicines List and List of Essential Diagnostics are core guidance documents that help countries prioritize critical health products that should be widely available and affordable throughout health systems. Now, updated versions of the two lists have been published, focusing on cancer and other global health challenges, with an emphasis on effective…

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News • Cellular interactions

Repairing aged tissue by messing with the neighbors

Researchers at the University of Helsinki have discovered how regenerative capacity of intestinal epithelium declines when we age. Targeting of an enzyme that inhibits stem cell maintaining signaling rejuvenates the regenerative potential of an aged intestine. This finding may open ways to alleviate age-related gastrointestinal problems, reduce side-effects of cancer treatments, and reduce…

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News • Collaboration

Partnership to enhance pharma drug development and single cell research

Olympus and Cytosurge AG, developer of the disruptive and patented FluidFM technology, announced their collaboration to significantly expand the awareness and availability of the FluidFM BOT* – a cutting-edge system for single cell manipulation and live cell imaging – in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). By pooling together each other’s world-class competences and by listening to…

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News • "Bless you!"

Common cold virus could revolutionise bladder cancer treatment

A strain of the common cold virus has been found to potentially target, infect and destroy cancer cells in patients with bladder cancer. No trace of the cancer was found in one patient following treatment with the virus. The researchers published their findings in the medical journal Clinical Cancer Research. Researchers from the University of Surrey and Royal Surrey County Hospital investigated…

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News • Ovarian and breast cancer

New insights into BRCA1 gene functions

Research led by the University of Birmingham has found important new ways that the BRCA1 gene functions which could help develop our understanding of the development of ovarian and breast cancers. The research, published in Nature, was led by experts at the University of Birmingham’s Birmingham Centre for Genome Biology and Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences and is part of a five-year…

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News • Oncology

Response to gene-targeted drugs depends on cancer type

Cancers with the same genetic weaknesses respond differently to targeted drugs depending on the tumour type of the patient, new research reveals. The study is set to prompt changes in thinking around precision medicine—because it shows that the genetics of a patient's cancer may not always be enough to tell whether it will respond to a treatment. The researchers are already starting to design…

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Article • Prostate cancer data

Mapping the inflammatory landscape

Image analysis of prostate cancer is a challenging area for clinicians. The disease shows a low mutation burden compared to melanoma and stomach cancer, for example, making morpho-molecular correlation more difficult, and there is often very low inflammation. With the role of tumour infiltrating lymphocytes in prostate cancer currently unclear – and with the advent of new approaches to prostate…

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News • Gastroenterology

Biliary tract cancer: Genetic imbalance could be the key

Patients with biliary tract cancer have altered genetic architecture in some immune system receptor systems. This has been shown by researchers at Karolinska Institutet in Sweden in a new study published in the journal Gastroenterology. It is hoped that the discovery will lead to new effective immunotherapy for these difficult to treat tumour types. Biliary tract cancers, including…

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Video • Photonics

Rapid tissue analysis: Laser light detects tumors

Cancer - this diagnosis affects almost every second German at some point in his life. It is the second most frequent cause of death in Germany. But the earlier the disease is diagnosed, the greater are the chances of surviving it. A team of researchers from Jena present a groundbreaking new method for the rapid, gentle and reliable detection of tumors with laser light at the leading trade fair…

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Article • Revolution through AI

Pixel analysis: the new era of digital pathology

As reporting workload for pathology departments continues to rise rapidly, artificial Intelligence solutions are set to play an increasing role in daily practice. In many pathology departments the annual number of cases has risen by around 2-4% but the slides produced has doubled in the last decade. Histopathologist Professor David Snead identified this phenomenon within his own centre in the…

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Article • Boosting our immune surveillance

Antibodies PD-1 and PD-L1: a quantum leap in cancer therapy

Immuno-oncology is a therapy in which the body’s immune system treats a tumour. Dr Eric Borges, from the Research and Development Centre at Boehringer Ingelheim Pharma GmbH in Germany, explains why this is revolutionary. Unlike conventional cancer therapies, with immuno-oncology the tumour cell is not the direct target, it’s the patient’s immune system. The medication stimulates this to…

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News • Oncology

Anti-inflammation approach shows promise for preventing cancer metastasis

An anti-inflammatory drug called ketorolac, given before surgery, can promote long-term survival in animal models of cancer metastasis, a team of scientists has found. Furthermore, so-called "pro-resolution" therapies can also trigger the immune system to eliminate metastatic cells. The research also suggests that flanking chemotherapy with anti-inflammatory drugs can unleash anti-tumor…

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Article • Urothelial carcinoma

AI assists in PD-L1 scoring

A new deep learning algorithm, which demonstrates the potential of artificial Intelligence (AI) to support pathologists, has been developed for PD-L1 scoring in tumour cells and immune cells in urothelial carcinoma samples. Speaking at the Digital Pathology and Artificial Intelligence Congress in London last December, Dr Michel Vandenberghe, from AstraZeneca, outlined how PD-L1 expression level…

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News • Microsatellites

Stomach and colorectal cancer: AI identifyies patients for immunotherapy

Changes in certain sections of the genetic material of cancer cells, so-called microsatellites, can provide an important indication of whether immunotherapy may be successful in a patient with stomach or colorectal cancer. Scientists from Uniklinik RWTH Aachen, the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK) and the National Center for Tumor Diseases Heidelberg (NCT)…

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News • Oncology

Killing the unkillable cancer cells

We all know someone affected by the battle against cancer. And we know that treatments can be quite efficient at shrinking the tumor but too often, they can’t kill all the cells, and so it may come back. With some aggressive types of cancer, the problem is so great that there is very little that can be done for the patients.

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Article • Artificial Intelligence

Allying AI to biomarkers is powerful but validation remains challenging

Using artificial intelligence (AI) to push development of imaging biomarkers shows great promise to improve disease understanding. This alliance could be a game changer in healthcare but, to advance research, clinical validation and variability of results must be factored in, a prominent Spanish radiologist advises. In clinical practice efforts are already ongoing to apply AI to obtain new…

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News • Blood cancer

Mapping bone-marrow microenvironment sheds fresh light on leukaemia

Stem cells are surrounded and protected by the stem-cell niche – the microenvironment – of the tissue in which they are found. Researchers at Karolinska Institutet have mapped the stem-cell niche in the bone marrow of mice and studied how it is influenced by developing leukemia. Their results, which are published in the journal Cell, show that the bone-marrow microenvironment is more complex…

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News • Common DNA structure

Nano-signature discovery could revolutionise cancer diagnosis

A quick and easy test to detect cancer from blood or biopsy tissue could eventually result in a new approach to patient diagnosis. The test has been developed by University of Queensland researchers Dr Abu Sina, Dr Laura Carrascosa and Professor Matt Trau, who have discovered a unique DNA nanostructure that appears to be common to all cancers. Cancer is an extremely complicated and variable…

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News • New discovery

Cancer drugs promote stem cell properties of colorectal cancer

Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) and the Mannheim University Medical Center have now discovered that a certain group of cancer drugs (MEK Inhibitors) activates the cancer-promoting Wnt signalling pathway in colorectal cancer cells. This can lead to the accumulation of tumor cells with stem cell characteristics that are resistant to many…

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Sponsored • Hematology

Early sepsis indicator helps identifying patients at risk

The critical element of testing for sepsis lies not so much in the location but in the timing and rapidity of results, according to Professor Jeannine T. Holden from Beckman Coulter Early identification enables treatment protocols to be delivered more quickly, offering better patient outcomes. Those most at risk, suggests Holden, are not patients within the intensive care unit – who are already…

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Article • Flow cytometry

Living cells – the essential biomarker

The team of the Heinz Nixdorf Chair of Biomedical Electronics at the Technical University of Munich focuses on innovative diagnostic tools to accelerate the development towards personalized medicine. Therapies tailored to the individual patient – this is the future not only of oncology but of many medical disciplines. “At this point, however,” concedes Professor Dr Oliver Hayden,…

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News • Nanotechnology

Targeting cancer cells with gold nanorods

Scientists at the University of Birmingham are working with a Canadian tech company to investigate whether gold nanorods can be used to target cancer cells in the human body. They have joined experts at Sona Nanotech Inc. to develop the next generation of nanorods for tissue imaging. The team will work with its Canadian partners - beginning by creating luminescent nanorods by transforming gold…

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Interview • Neurology

On-going malignant astrocytoma vaccine tests

A new vaccination for malignant astrocytoma brings such patients hope. However, research is still in its infancy. We spoke with Professor Michael Platten, Medical Director of the Neurological Clinic at Medical University Mannheim, about the present state of research and the serious opportunities this presents. During the interview, he also revealed how cooperation with the pharmaceutical industry…

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News • New study

Ribosome inhibition may hold the key to multi-stage cancer treatment

Nearly 90% of all cancer patient deaths are due to metastasis. A study from Uppsala University shows that a process that allows the cells to metastasise is aided by the synthesis of new ribosomes, the cell components in which proteins are produced. The results open the possibility for new treatment strategies for advanced cancers. The study is published in Nature Communications. As tumours…

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News • ctDNA vs. HGSOC

Taking 'molecular snapshots' of ovarian cancer

High-grade serous ovarian cancer (HGSOC) is the most common and aggressive subtype of ovarian cancer. The HGSOC tumors consist of several heterogeneous cell populations with a large number of mutations. This genetic variability makes it difficult to find drugs that would kill all the cancer cells, and to which the cells would not become resistant during treatment. Over half of the patients…

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News • Flow cytometry lab

New ClearLLab IVD Reagents launched

Beckman Coulter is launching the ClearLLab 10C System for the clinical flow cytometry lab. The new system is the first 10-color IVD panel of immunophenotyping reagents cleared by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for both lymphoid and myeloid lineages. The four dry pre-mixed antibody tubes use the company’s DURA Innovations technology, eliminating the need to pipette antibodies, improving…

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News • Brachytherapy

Single dose of targeted radiotherapy: safe and effective for prostate cancer

A single high dose of radiation that can be delivered directly to the tumour within a few minutes is a safe and effective technique for treating men with low risk prostate cancer, according to a study presented at the ESTRO 38 conference. Radiotherapy traditionally involves a series of lower dose treatments that take place over several days or week. The new treatment is called high dose-rate…

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News • Acute myeloid leukaemia

AML's Achilles’ heel opens door for new treatments

New findings about a fatal form of blood cancer could aid the development of new drugs with significantly less harmful side effects than existing chemotherapy. The discovery could lead to novel treatments that efficiently eliminate blood cancer cells in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML), without harming healthy blood cells. Researchers have discovered how a protein in the body plays a key role in AML…

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News • Ten-year trial results

Radiotherapy reduces recurrence of early, hormone-driven breast cancer

Women with early, low risk, hormone-driven breast cancer are less likely to have a recurrence of their disease if they have radiotherapy after surgery, as well as anti-hormone treatment, according to results from a trial that has followed 869 women for ten years. New findings from the 8 A trial of the Austrian Breast and Colorectal Cancer Study Group (ABCSG), presented at the ESTRO 38 conference,…

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News • Encyclopaedia

'Fingerprint database' helps to identify new cancer culprits

Scientists from King's and Cambridge have developed a catalogue of DNA mutation ‘fingerprints’ that could help doctors pinpoint the environmental culprit responsible for a patient’s tumour – including showing some of the fingerprints left in lung tumours by specific chemicals found in tobacco smoke. Our DNA, the human genome, comprises of a string of molecules known as nucleotides. These…

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News • Personalized medicine

FDA approves first targeted therapy for metastatic bladder cancer

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted accelerated approval to Balversa (erdafitinib), a treatment for adult patients with locally advanced or metastatic bladder cancer that has a type of susceptible genetic alteration known as FGFR3 or FGFR2, and that has progressed during or following prior platinum-containing chemotherapy. Patients should be selected for therapy with Balversa…

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News • NAFLD

Fatty liver disease: critical regulator discovered

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) is a condition where fat accumulates in the liver and has become the most common liver disease worldwide. While NAFLD shows few or no symptoms at initial stages, it is a potentially serious disease which can progress to an inflammatory state called steatohepatitis (NASH), which can lead to liver cirrhosis and cancer. Fatty liver disease can be managed by…

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News • In situ vaccination

Turning tumors into cancer vaccine factories

Researchers at Mount Sinai have developed a novel approach to cancer immunotherapy, injecting immune stimulants directly into a tumor to teach the immune system to destroy it and other tumor cells throughout the body. The “in situ vaccination” worked so well in patients with advanced-stage lymphoma that it is also undergoing trials in breast and head and neck cancer patients, according to a…

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News • Rare bone cancer

Targeted approach to therapy for chordomas

Chordomas are rare bone tumors for which only few options of treatment exist. Scientists and doctors from the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT), the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), and Heidelberg University Hospital (UKHD) have discovered a particular genetic trait of chordomas in advanced stages after conducting gene analysis. Their findings, published in the journal Nature…

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News • Tumor-associated macrophages

Immune cells key to predicting cancer outcomes

Scientists have identified key changes in immune cells within cancerous tumours that could help improve the development of treatments. The study, which has been published in the journal Cancer Cell, also found a set of genes that are expressed at high levels in breast cancer tumours and linked to more aggressive cancer types. Researchers say the discoveries offer clues to diagnosis and predicting…

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News • Against rebound

Pancreatic cancer: Genome-wide analysis reveals new strategies

For some cancers, initial treatment with chemotherapy brings positive, but only temporary, results: tumors shrink, but then rebound as the cancer becomes drug-resistant. This pattern of remission-resistance-relapse is particularly true for pancreatic cancer, an aggressive disease in which early success is often countered by eventual disease progression. To wit: The one-year relative survival rate…

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News • Cancer research

Black nanoparticles slow tumor growth

Melanin protects our skin from the sun’s damaging rays by absorbing light energy and converting it to heat. This could make it a very effective tool in tumor diagnosis and treatment, as demonstrated by a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and Helmholtz Zentrum München. The scientists managed to create melanin-loaded cell membrane derived nanoparticles, which improved tumor…

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News • Thrombocytes

Blocking platelets could prevent fatty liver disease and liver cancer

Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is among the most common chronic hepatic disorders in Western industrial countries and the rate is also rapidly rising in newly industrialized countries. Experts estimate that about 30 to 40 percent of the population worldwide develop this liver condition. In the United States, this disease is well on the way to becoming the most frequent indication for liver…

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News • Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

Protein linked to cancer growth drives deadly lung disease IPF

A protein associated with cancer growth appears to drive the deadly lung disease known as idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), according to new research from Cedars-Sinai. The discovery, made in laboratory mice and human tissue samples, may have implications for treating the disease using existing anti-cancer therapies that inhibit the protein PD-L1. Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis is a chronic,…

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News • PARG inhibitors

New class of drugs could treat ovarian cancer

A team of researchers across The University of Manchester have shown that a new class of drugs are able to stop ovarian cancer cells growing. The Cancer Research UK and Wellcome Trust funded study, published in the journal Cancer Cell, showed that the drugs, called PARG inhibitors, can kill ovarian cancer cells by targeting weaknesses within their ability to copy their DNA. The first-in-class…

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News • Mitochondria mystery solved

Researchers uncover key to greater efficacy in cancer treatment

Why do cancer cells react differently to treatments? Researchers from Mount Sinai and IBM have discovered a novel clue in explaining how cancer cells with identical genomes can respond differently to the same therapy. In a Nature Communications paper, researchers reveal for the first time that the number of mitochondria in a cell is, in great part, associated with how the cancer responds to drug…

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Article • Morphology, texture, function, metabolism

Radiomics will transform tumour characterisation

Tumours change over time – and not only in size. They also evolve genetically, mutate and spread through equally diverse metastases. Each is unique and present with a more or less complex structure, but rarely as a unified entity. Characterising them from A to Z and from detection to neutralisation remains a challenge for modern medicine.

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News • Microbiome

Examining the "forgotten organ"

Shahid Umar, PhD, researcher with The University of Kansas Cancer Center, has dedicated two decades of his scientific exploration to better grasp the connection between colon cancer and the human microbiome. Called the “forgotten organ,” the microbiome comprises trillions and trillions of microbes, including bacteria, fungi and viruses, in our body.

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News • Glioblastoma

Researchers block protein to stop brain tumors' self-repair

Researchers at the San Diego branch of the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at University of California San Diego, with colleagues around the country, report that inhibiting activity of a specific protein in glioblastomas (GBM) boosts their sensitivity to radiation, thus improving treatment prospects for one of the most common and aggressive forms of brain cancer. The findings are published…

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Article • PET/MRI, PET/RF & more

Disruptive innovations in molecular imaging

Molecular imaging is an exciting field for scientists who are willing to explore and innovate, prominent Spanish physicist José María Benlloch pointed out when he reviewed some of the most impacting and recent innovations in his portfolio during a meeting in Valencia. ‘Our mission is to develop innovative sensitive and harmless medical imaging instruments for early detection of diseases and…

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Article • Maps of the brain

7-Tesla MR enters clinical routine

Ultra-high-field magnetic resonance tomography with field strength of 7 Tesla is slowly but surely entering clinical routine. ‘Thanks to very high spatial and spectral resolution, ultra-high-field MR permits detailed views of the human anatomy and can show precisely the metabolic processes such as those in the brain,’ said Professor Siegfried Trattnig, from Vienna’s Medical University.

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Article • Radiomics

A boost for thoracic radiology

A new radiomics study could help unlock one of the more challenging issues facing thoracic radiologists. Distinguishing non-small cell lung cancer from benign nodules is a major challenge due to their similar appearance on CT images. Now, however, researchers from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio, have used radiomic features extracted from CT images to differentiate between…

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Article • Kickstarted imaging

First total body PET/CT scanner cleared for clinical use

The first total-body positron emission tomography/computed tomography (PET/CT) that can acquire a 3D image of the human body in a single position received 510(k) clearance from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in January 2019. Its forthcoming commercial availability for clinical use in the United States later this year is the milestone achievement of a multi-institutional consortium…

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News • Decreasing false positives

Improving diagnosis of colorectal cancer

Current faecal blood tests for colorectal cancer have a sixty percent false positive rate. New funding from Cancer Research UK is helping scientists at Cardiff University to find better, safer tests. Inaccuracy of initial tests for colorectal cancer are putting patients at unnecessary risk, highlighting vital need for the development of precise and non-invasive testing. A grant of over £400,000…

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News • X-ray crystallography

Seeing the unseeable life inside a virus

Researchers at Cardiff University have used x-ray crystallography and computer simulation to get a closer look at how viruses bind cells and cause infection. The new insight could help in the development of drugs and therapies for infections and further advance the exploitation of viruses for medical treatments. The first author of the study, Alex Baker from Cardiff University’s School of…

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News • Aggressive brain tumors

Progress in the treatment of glioblastoma

Cancer researchers at the University of Bonn have reported significant progress in the treatment of glioblastoma. About one third of all patients suffer from a particular variant of this most common and aggressive brain tumor. Survival of these patients treated with the new combination therapy increased on average by nearly half compared to patients who received the standard therapy.

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News • Under pressure

Breast tissue stiffening promotes cancer development

A study provides new insight into how the stiffening of breast tissue plays a role in breast cancer development. By examining how mammary cells respond in a stiffness-changing hydrogel, bioengineers at the University of California San Diego discovered that several pathways work together to promote the transformation of breast cells into cancer cells. The work could inspire new approaches to…

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News • A healthy nap

How sleep strengthens the immune system

Getting enough sleep is vital to supporting our immune system in fighting off pathogens – this much is common knowledge. But what we don't know is how exactly sleep affects certain immune functions. Scientists at the Universities of Tübingen and Lübeck have now discovered a new mechanism by which sleep supports the immune system. The team led by Dr. Luciana Besedovsky and Dr. Stoyan Dimitrov…

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Article • Therapeutic progress

Cancer: riding the wave of innovation

In haematology and medical oncology, there is always something new. However, the increasing stratification of cancer therapies presents an enormous challenge for clinical research. Tumour cells – those altered genetically by mutation and thus ought to be recognised by the immune system and destroyed – manage to apply diverse molecular tricks to avoid attack by the immune system. Thus, they…

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News • AI, IT, data management

Digital attack on cancer

Several research groups at Berlin Institute of Health (BIH) are working on digitally combating cancer. The main goal is to combine and jointly evaluate existing information. With 500,000 new cancer cases every year in Germany alone, it is worthwhile comparing experiences with different diagnostic and treatment methods, thus allowing more patients to benefit from the most promising approaches. In…

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News • Tiny threat

Nanoparticles may promote cancer metastasis

Nanoparticles can be found in processed food (e.g. food additives), consumer products (e.g. sunscreen) and even in medicine. While these tiny particles could have large untapped potential and novel new applications, they may have unintended and harmful side effects, according to a recent study by researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS). Specifically, NUS researchers found that…

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News • Endoscopy RFA

New tool opens doors for pancreatic cancer treatment

A significantly more effective, minimally invasive treatment for pancreatic tumors may be on the horizon, thanks to a new endoscopy tool created in the Penn State Department of Mechanical Engineering. On average, only about 20 percent of pancreatic cancer patients are eligible for a surgical removal of the tumor, which is currently the most-effective treatment option. The location of the pancreas…

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News • Cancer stem-like cells

Important signaling pathway in breast cancer revealed

In breast cancer, one of the most common cancers in women, tumors contain a small amount of so-called cancer stem-like cells (CSCs). Being able to eliminate breast-cancer stem-like cells in a targeted way is essential for developing successful therapies — conventional treatments, such as chemotherapy or radiotherapy followed by drug intake, do not target CSCs. A better understanding of the…

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News • Hot helper

Can oolong tea prevent breast cancer?

In a recent study published in the journal Anticancer Research, Saint Louis University scientists, together with a visiting scientist from Fujian Medical University in China, have discovered evidence that oolong tea can lead to DNA damage of breast cancer cells and inhibit the growth and progression of tumors in the lab, potentially offering a non-toxic strategy to prevent breast cancer. The…

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News • Cellular recycling

Can autophagy stop cancer before it starts?

Just as plastic tips protect the ends of shoelaces and keep them from fraying when we tie them, molecular tips called telomeres protect the ends of chromosomes and keep them from fusing when cells continually divide and duplicate their DNA. But while losing the plastic tips may lead to messy laces, telomere loss may lead to cancer. Salk Institute scientists studying the relationship of telomeres…

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News • Precancerous lesions

Lung cancer: early detection with molecular profiling

Before lung cancer develops, precancerous lesions are found in the airway, but only half of these will actually become lung cancer, while others will disappear or remain benign without becoming harmful. Under the microscope, the lesions look the same, making it difficult to know which lesions to treat. In this study, published in Nature Medicine, researchers have for the first time, discovered…

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News • Drug research

Opioids: no effect without side effect

Through genetic changes to the opioid receptor in mice, pharmacologists at Jena University Hospital have succeeded in almost completely suppressing the development of opioid tolerance. The pain-relieving effect actually improved and continued even when the drug was administered for longer periods. However, adverse effects such as respiratory depression and constipation, as well as withdrawal…

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News • Precision medicine

Europe looks to cells for a healthier future

How can we detect the first signs of disease as early as possible? Could closer investigation at the cellular level help to quickly prevent disease progression through appropriate treatment? The European Union is now investing a million euros over a one-year period to devise the plan for a fundamentally new approach to understanding the constant changes within cells and their relationships to one…

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News • DMD & rhabdomyosarcoma

Duchenne muscular dystrophy: Muscle stem cells can drive cancer

People with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) can develop an otherwise-rare muscle cancer, called rhabdomyosarcoma, due to the muscle cells’ continuous work to rebuild the damaged tissue. However, little is known about how the cancer arises, hindering development of a treatment or test that could predict cancer risk. Now, scientists from Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute (SBP)…

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Article • Getting personal(ised)

Pathology: Moving us towards precision medicine

The European Society of Pathology (ESP) holds its European Congress of Pathology (ECP) at different venues annually. This year, in Spain, 3,448 delegates from 87 countries attended. There, ESP president Dina Tiniakos spoke about the increasing role of pathology in precision medicine including challenges linked to digitisation. ‘Precision medicine is the centre-point for cancer management, but…

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News • Choline

Essential nutrient holds promise against Alzheimer’s

In a new study, researchers at the Biodesign Institute explore a safe and simple treatment for one of the most devastating and perplexing afflictions: Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Lead authors Ramon Velazquez and Salvatore Oddo, along with their colleagues in the Arizona State University (ASU)-Banner Neurodegenerative Disease Research Center (NDRC), investigate the effects of choline, an important…

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News • Radiotherapy side-effects

Skin fibrosis: new treatment for cancer patients

A clinical-scientific team specializing in head-and-neck cancer has identified a way to manipulate metabolism to potentially curb skin fibrosis – a common side effect of radiotherapy affecting quality of life of cancer survivors. The study findings from the laboratory of principal investigator Dr. Fei-Fei Liu, Chief, Radiation Oncology, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health…

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Article • Immuno-oncological biomarkers

Seeking to augment the value of tumour infiltrating lymphocytes

Measuring tumour infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) is gaining importance in immunotherapy, but other variables must also be considered to boost prognosis and prediction accuracy, a leading pathologist argued at EBCC 11 last March in Barcelona. When it comes to prognosis and prediction for immunotherapy, a potentially new variable is emerging – TILs – white blood cells that have left the blood…

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News • Regenerative medicine

Blood cells can be directly reprogrammed into neural stem cells

Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the stem cell institute HI-STEM* have succeeded for the first time in directly reprogramming human blood cells into a previously unknown type of neural stem cell. These induced stem cells are similar to those that occur during the early embryonic development of the central nervous system. They can be modified and multiplied indefinitely…

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News • Glioblastoma

New actively personalized therapeutic vaccine for brain cancer

The prospect of an actively personalized approach to the treatment of glioblastoma has moved a step closer with the recent publication in Nature of favorable data from the phase 1 study GAPVAC-101, testing a novel therapeutic concept tailored to specific characteristics of patients’ individual tumors and immune systems. For the first time, the feasibility of such a highly personalized form of…

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Video • New treatment options

Unlocking the secrets of cell communication

Portland State University (PSU) researchers have made a significant breakthrough by developing the 3-D structure of proteins from inside the eye lens that control how cells communicate with each other, which could open the door to treating diseases such as cataracts, stroke and cancer. The PSU research team, led by chemistry professor Steve Reichow, used a multimillion-dollar microscope and a…

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News • Immune-boosting substance

This gel could help the body after cancer surgery

Many people who are diagnosed with cancer will undergo some type of surgery to treat their disease — almost 95 percent of people with early-diagnosed breast cancer will require surgery and it’s often the first line of treatment for people with brain tumors, for example. But despite improvements in surgical techniques over the past decade, the cancer often comes back after the procedure. Now,…

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News • Pregnancy

Giving birth raises risk of breast cancer in younger women

Younger women who have recently had a child may have a higher risk of breast cancer than their peers of the same age who do not have children, according to a large-scale analysis co-led by a University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center researcher. The findings, published in the Annals of Internal Medicine, may seem contrary to conventional wisdom that childbirth is…

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News • Less rejection

Citrate-based biomaterial fuels bone healing

A material based on a natural product of bones and citrus fruits, called citrate, provides the extra energy stem cells need to form new bone tissue, according to a team of Penn State bioengineers. The new understanding of the mechanism that allows citrate to aid in bone regeneration will help the researchers develop slow-release, biodegradable citrate-releasing scaffolds to act as bone-growth…

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News • Tropical parasite

Treating leishmaniasis with natural compound 2HF

Current treatment options for the parasitic disease leishmaniasis are largely ineffective, expensive, and tend to be plagued by resistant parasites and side effects. Now, researchers reporting in PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases have showed that a natural flavonoid is effective at treating Leishmania amazonensis infections. Leishmaniasis is endemic to 98 countries and affects more than 12 million…

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News • Kidney cancer

Brain metastases: Multidisciplinary care improves outcomes

New data reveals the life expectancy of patients with kidney cancer that’s traveled to the brain has now stretched from months to years. UT Southwestern Kidney Cancer Program investigators report survival rates beyond 2.5 years for some patients with specialized multidisciplinary care. Historically, patients whose kidney cancer had spread to the brain were believed to have only about six months…

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News • Non-invasive diagnostics

Detecting bladder cancer with atomic force microscopy

A research team led by Tufts University engineers has developed a non-invasive method for detecting bladder cancer that might make screening easier and more accurate than current invasive clinical tests involving visual inspection of bladder. In the first successful use of atomic force microscopy (AFM) for clinical diagnostic purposes, the researchers have been able to identify signature features…

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Video • Fighting cancer

'Zapping' tumors might be the future of radiation therapy

New accelerator-based technology being developed by the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory and Stanford University aims to reduce the side effects of cancer radiation therapy by shrinking its duration from minutes to under a second. Built into future compact medical devices, technology developed for high-energy physics could also help make radiation therapy more…

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Article • Evolving technique

Flow cytometry rises to new challenges

Flow cytometry has proved an invaluable diagnostic tool for leukaemia and lymphoma for almost three decades. Now, however, this is evolving in applications to seek out residual disease in cases and in fusion with molecular testing to advance its diagnostic potential. However, although recognised as fast, flexible and accurate, flow cytometry suffers from a lack of standardisation, according to…

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Article • CEUS & the kidneys

Contrast-enhanced ultrasound for renal masses

Contrast enhanced ultrasound (CEUS) has proved in trials to be more accurate than computed tomography and MRI and can help eliminate the need for unnecessary biopsies and surgery. Dr Richard Barr, Professor of Radiology at Northeast Ohio Medical University, explains the benefits of the modality.

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News • Bacterial infection

Laser-activated silk sealants outperform sutures for tissue repair

Researchers have developed laser-activated nanomaterials that integrate with wounded tissues to form seals that are superior to sutures for containing body fluids and preventing bacterial infection. Tissue repair following injury or during surgery is conventionally performed with sutures and staples, which can cause tissue damage and complications, including infection. Glues and adhesives have…

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News • Advanced materials

Nanocarriers open up to cancer

Nanosystems that deliver anticancer drugs or imaging materials to tumours are showing significant progress, particularly those that respond to tumour-related stimuli, according to a review published in the journal Science and Technology of Advanced Materials. However, further research is still required to make sure these delivery systems are stable, non-toxic and biodegradable. Nanocarriers…

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Article • Cancer management

The enormous potential of liquid biopsy

It is non-invasive, delivers a chance of early diagnosis, prognostic information and sequential monitoring, and, believes Professor Francesco Salvatore, the enormous potential of liquid biopsies has still to be reached. However, the positive results obtained so far have ‘opened the door to a promising new multi-faceted group of tumour markers, at present collectively designated “liquid…

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News • Nanoparticle therapy

Putting a target on breast cancer

The complex structure of breast tumours makes treatment a medical challenge. A promising, novel selenium-based breast cancer nanoparticle therapy by the Austrian Centre of Industrial Biotechnology (acib) together with other partners in the EU-project Neosetac could change that: It has proved to boost the active agent delivery and assure it's active only in the target tissue while also bringing…

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News • It's all connected

Understanding the "wiring diagrams" of genes in complex tissues

How is the activity of all genes in cells of higher organisms interconnected? And how are the genetic "wiring diagrams" of the cells in complex tissues coordinated with each other? Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), the European Molecular Biology Laboratory and the University of Heidelberg are now planning to investigate this in two model organisms, Drosophila and…

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News • Innovative material

'Smart' surfaces might pave the way for safer implants and better diagnostics

Researchers at McMaster University have solved a vexing problem by engineering surface coatings that can repel everything, such as bacteria, viruses and living cells, but can be modified to permit beneficial exceptions. The discovery holds significant promise for medical and other applications, making it possible for implants such as vascular grafts, replacement heart valves and artificial joints…

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News • BIA-ALCL

Breast implant cancer risks: are women aware?

Breast surgeons across the UK must ensure women are aware of BIA-ALCL, a non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that is associated with implants; and more responsibility must be taken to diagnose and report cases, surgeons attending the 2018 London Breast Meeting have warned. Hundreds of breast specialists from around the world met at the Royal College of Physicians for the four-day conference this autumn,…

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News • Glioblastoma

Building a better model for brain tumours

A research team led by the University of Alabama at Birmingham is launching a study to find a better model for glioblastoma, a particularly devastating type of brain tumour, to help determine the most appropriate treatment modality. The $3.6 million, five-year U01 grant award is funded by the National Cancer Institute, one of the National Institutes of Health. The UAB team will join four other…

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News • Immunotherapy

Toward an “ultra-personalized” therapy for melanoma

With new immunotherapy treatments for melanoma, recovery rates have risen dramatically – in some cases to around 50%. But they could be much higher. A new study led by researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science showed, in lab dishes and animal studies, that a highly personalized approach could help the immune cells improve their ability to recognize the cancer and kill it.

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News • Myelodysplastic syndrome

Genetic testing helps predict disease recurrence

A DNA-based analysis of blood cells soon after a stem cell transplant can predict likelihood of disease recurrence in patients with myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), a group of cancerous disorders characterized by dysfunctional blood cells. Such a practice could help doctors identify patients at high risk of disease recurrence early after a transplant and help guide treatment decisions.

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News • Oncology

Discovering cancer cell mutations with optimized technologies

Cancer cells often have mutations in their DNA that can give scientists clues about how the cancer started or which treatment may be most effective. Finding these mutations can be difficult, but a new method may offer more complete, comprehensive results. A team of researchers has developed a new framework that can combine three existing methods of finding these large mutations - or structural…

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Sponsored • Fungal testing

One test winning over a run of 10 New β-Glucan test delivers rapid results

Fungal testing plays a critical role in patient care. However, the turnaround for results can be lengthy because the existing tests need 10 samples in a run. Professor Maurizio Sanguinetti, Professor of Microbiology at the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart (Università Cattolica del S. Cuore), in Rome, Italy, is comparing the results of a new test with those from existing tests. Created by…

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Article • A challenger arrives

AI – just a tool or the future of healthcare?

Neuroscientist Lynda Chin MD, Founder and CEO of Real-world Education Detection and Intervention, has little doubt: ‘Artificial intelligence to the rescue,’ she proclaimed in her keynote address at the Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning Summit, held in Las Vegas this spring. ‘We need a system and analytics to interpret data!’ she urged, despite being well aware that building a…

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Article • Implementation

En route towards digital pathology

The benefits of digital pathology have been well-documented along with the need for significant capital investment. Yet, as some pathology networks are discovering, there can be ongoing challenges to bringing an integrated system into play. Path Links – a single managed clinical pathology network operating across Lincolnshire in the east of England – and Nottingham University Hospitals in the…

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News • Promising research

First steps towards a new, targeted lung cancer treatment

Scientists have identified a key molecular player in a subtype of lung cancer which could lead to a new way to tackle the disease, according to research published in Nature Communications. They found lung squamous cell carcinoma (LUSC) cells contained high amounts of a protein called BCL11A. The study showed that manipulating the gene responsible for the protein stopped the development of LUSC in…

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News • Brain tumors

Researchers find missing immune cells that could fight glioblastoma

Glioblastoma brain tumors can have an unusual effect on the body's immune system, often causing a dramatic drop in the number of circulating T-cells that help drive the body's defenses. Where the T-cells go has been unclear, even as immunotherapies are increasingly employed to stimulate the body's natural ability to fight invasive tumors. Now researchers have tracked the missing T-cells in…

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News • Personalised drug treatment

AI approach to help myeloma patients

A multidisciplinary team of researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS) has developed an artificial intelligence (AI) technology platform that could potentially change the way drug combinations are being designed, hence enabling doctors to determine the most effective drug combination for a patient quickly. Applying the platform towards drug resistant multiple myeloma, a type of…

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News • Autophagy

Pathway Ebola virus uses to enter cells pinpointed

The new outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus declared just last week in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo is believed to have claimed more than 30 victims so far, highlighting the continued urgency to find a way to stop the pathogen from killing the people it infects. A new study is shedding light on the role of specific proteins that trigger a mechanism allowing Ebola virus to enter cells to…

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News • Gastroenterology

High-fat diet can cause pancreatic cancer – but there's hope

A high-fat diet may promote the growth of pancreatic cancer independent of obesity because of the interaction between dietary fat and cholecystokinin (CCK), a digestive hormone. In addition, blocking CCK may help prevent the spread of pancreatic tumors to other areas of the body (metastases). The new findings are published ahead of print in the American Journal of Physiology—Gastrointestinal…

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News • Switching sides

How cancer cells 'brainwash' their foes

It doesn’t often happen that army generals switch sides in the middle of a war, but when cancer is attacking, it may cause even a gene that acts as the body’s master defender to change allegiance. Researchers at the Weizmann Institute of Science have discovered that this gene’s betrayal can occur in more ways than previously appreciated – and might even return the renegade cells to their…

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News • Tumor research

Growing brain cancer in a dish

Austrian researchers have accomplished an astounding feat: They created organoids that mimic the onset of brain cancer. This method not only sheds light on the complex biology of human brain tumors but could also pave the way for new medical applications.

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News • bioengineering

Advancing technique for of personalied bone grafts

Scientists have developed a new bone engineering technique called Segmental Additive Tissue Engineering (SATE). The technique allows researchers to combine segments of bone engineered from stem cells to create large scale, personalized grafts that will enhance treatment for those suffering from bone disease or injury through regenerative medicine.

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Article • Patient blood management

Blood transfusions: Patient groups should be precisely defined

Although blood transfusion today is a well-established and safe procedure, the medical science community has not yet arrived at a consensus regarding appropriate patient blood management (PBM) methods. ‘Many PBM approaches have not yet been scientifically validated; consequently over- as well as under-transfusion might be associated with adverse events and complications for the patient,’…

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News • Acute myeloid leukaemia

Researchers draw AML ‘family trees’ in patients treated with enasidenib

For the first time, a team of international researchers have mapped the family trees of cancer cells in acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) to understand how this blood cancer responds to a new drug, enasidenib. The work also explains what happens when a patient stops responding to the treatment, providing important clues about how to combine enasidenib with other anti-cancer drugs to produce…

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News • Brain cancer

Typical mutation in cancer cells stifles immune response

The exchange of a single amino acid building block in a metabolic enzyme can lead to cancer. In addition, it can impair the immune system. It thus blocks the body’s immune response in the battle against the mutant molecule and also impedes immunotherapy against brain cancer. This finding opens new insights into cancer development and progression and it also suggests that rethinking antitumor…

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Article • Heard at the 14th ECDP in Helsinki

Digital pathology: Sometimes AI can outperform experts

Machine learning is adding a new dimension to pathology and already outperforming experts during some tasks, according to several speakers at the 14th European Congress on Digital Pathology (ECDP) who revealed up-to-date developments. However, whilst AI is set to herald a new future for digital pathology, Johan Lundin, associated professor for biomedical informatics and research director at the…

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Article • Heard at the EBCC11

Identifying circulating tumour cells with liquid biopsy

Liquid biopsies can increasingly help diagnose and monitor breast cancer, and tracking circulating tumour cells (CTC) in metastatic patients could prove effective in these applications and treatment planning. Efforts are currently underway to demonstrate CTC clinical use and much can be learned from completed studies in prostate cancer, speaker Michail Ignatiadis MD PhD highlighted in a dedicated…

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News • Infections

Zika suppresses virus fighting cells

More than two years after reports of skyrocketing Zika rates surfaced worldwide, questions still loom about this complicated virus. Professor of Biological Science Hengli Tang and his postdoctoral researcher Jianshe Lang from the Florida State University take a deep dive into the differences between Zika and the Dengue virus.

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News • Health IT

Computer algorithm maps cancer resistance to drugs

New methods of studying the evolution of treatment resistance in head and neck cancer are being developed by researchers at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center. The scientists wanted to examine how cancers acquire resistance to treatment over time and whether those changes could be modeled computationally to determine patient-specific timelines of resistance.

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News • Research

Unravelling the mystery of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease

Another piece in the puzzle that is non-alcoholic fatty liver disease has been solved by a University of Queensland researcher in a step towards developing treatments for a disease that affects about one in every five Australians. PhD student Laurence Britton has discovered a pivotal mechanism by which iron is able to make the liver more vulnerable to the injury and metabolic dysfunction that…

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News • Promising research

Could senescence be the key to stopping cancer?

Canadian researchers have found a promising way to stop tumour cells from multiplying. In disrupting the composition of ribosomes, the team from Université de Montréal (UdeM) discovered a direct molecular mechanism to stop cancer cells from proliferating, which is called senescence. Their results have been published in Nature Cell Biology. 
“Ribosomes are complex machines composed of both…

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News • Live long and prosper

Key molecule of aging discovered

Every cell and every organism ages sooner or later. But why is this so? Scientists at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg have now discovered for the first time a protein that represents a central switching point in the aging process. It controls the life span of an individual - from the fly to the human being. This opens up new possibilities for developing therapies against…

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News • When the phosphate decides...

Defense against viruses or autoimmune disorder?

The first defense line of the body against virus infections is composed of so-called restriction factors. SAMHD1, one of such restriction factors, does not only play a role in the defense against viruses but also in the development of autoimmune disorders and cancer. The question of which effect SAMHD1 exertsin the cell is decided by addition or removal of phosphate groups.

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News • Oncology

Breaking through a tumor's defenses

Babraham Institute researchers have shown that some tumours use not one but two levels of protection against the immune system. Knocking out one level boosted the protective effects of the second and vice versa. The research demonstrates that a two-pronged approach targeting both cell types simultaneously may offer a promising route for the development of new cancer immunotherapies.

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News • Analyzing free-floating DNA

Blood test shows potential for early detection of lung cancer

A test that analyzes free-floating DNA in the blood may be able to detect early-stage lung cancer, a preliminary report from the ongoing Circulating Cell-Free Genome Atlas (CCGA) study suggests. Lead study author Geoffrey R. Oxnard, MD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute: “There is an unmet need globally for early-detection tests for lung cancer that can be easily implemented by health-care…

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News • New function assessment

Measuring immune cell response within minutes

T cells fight pathogens and tumors: Researchers from the Universities of Tübingen and Lübeck present a simple and fast method to rapidly assess their function. Due to its simplicity, reliability and versatility, it could be broadly implemented for basic research and in the clinical setting. Methods so far to test T-cell response were technically cumbersome and time-consuming and therefore only…

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News • New research

Circulating tumor cells to help stage metastatic breast cancer

Menarini Silicon Biosystems announced that a new study has found that using circulating tumor cells (CTCs), a form of liquid biopsy, holds promise as a key tool for developing a staging system that can have a significant impact in the treatment of metastatic breast cancer (MBC). In this study, the largest CTCs pooled analysis study to date, researchers determined that the CTC count could be used…

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News • Man against machine

AI is better than dermatologists at diagnosing skin cancer

Researchers have shown for the first time that a form of artificial intelligence or machine learning known as a deep learning convolutional neural network (CNN) is better than experienced dermatologists at detecting skin cancer. In a study published in the leading cancer journal Annals of Oncology, researchers in Germany, the USA and France trained a CNN to identify skin cancer by showing it more…

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News • Hematopoietic Stem Cells

What keeps our blood in balance

Blood is the juice of life, as while circulating through the body it delivers vital substances such as oxygen and nutrients to cells and tissues. Chemotherapy, radiotherapy and blood loss in general impoverish the system. A special kind of cells in the bone marrow, called hematopoietic stem cells (HSCs) is able to replenish the impoverished system by giving rise not only to red blood cells, but…

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News • Photoacoustics

New method shows 3D images of cancer cells in the body

Making tumour cells glow: Medical physicists at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg (MLU) have developed a new method that can generate detailed three-dimensional images of the body's interior. This can be used to more closely investigate the development of cancer cells in the body. The research group presents its findings in "Communication Physics".

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News • High throughput screening

Tumor-like spheres to help discover smarter cancer drugs

Cancer is a disease often driven by mutations in genes. As researchers learn more about these genes, and the proteins they code for, they are seeking smarter drugs to target them. The ultimate goal is to find ways to stop cancer cells from multiplying out of control, thereby blocking the growth and spread of tumors. Now researchers from The Scripps Research Institute are reporting an innovative…

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News • Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis

The most dangerous lung disease you've never heard of

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is one of the most challenging and frustrating diseases that pulmonologists face. And despite affecting 1 out of 200 adults over the age of 65 in the United States, general awareness of IPF is low. “There’s a tremendous disconnect between the human impact of this disease and its recognition by the public. Few people have ever heard of it,” says Marc…

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News • Bone health

Osteoporosis defined: causes, symptoms and treatments

Weak, easily broken bones are an epidemic in the United States. They’re often tied to osteoporosis, a disease that causes bones to degenerate over time. This makes them less flexible, more brittle, and easier to break. According to the International Osteoporosis Foundation, more than 44 million Americans aged 50 and older either have or face the threat of developing osteoporosis due to low bone…

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Sponsored • Exhibition

Progress in medicine presented at Bulmedica/Buldental 2018

New products and technologies in medical practice expect the specialists of the leading international exhibition Bulmedica/Buldental from 16 to 18 May at Inter Expo Center. This year, the medical profile of the exhibition will focus on the progress in imaging, physiotherapy, aesthetic medicine. Once again Bulmedica/Buldental will be a platform to keep an eye on the tendencies, a meeting point of…

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News • Groundbreaking technique

Noninvasive brain tumor biopsy on the horizon

Taking a biopsy of a brain tumor is a complicated and invasive surgical process, but a team of researchers at Washington University in St. Louis is developing a way that allows them to detect tumor biomarkers through a simple blood test. Hong Chen, a biomedical engineer, and Eric C. Leuthardt, MD, a neurosurgeon, led a team of engineers, physicians and researchers who have developed a…

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News • New report

Advanced development of primary pancreatic organoid tumor models for high-throughput phenotypic drug screening

A multidisciplinary team of scientists share recent advancements in innovative in-vitro cancer biology methods for screening drug-like molecules in cancer tissue relevant models in a new report published online ahead-of-print at SLAS Discovery. Entitled Advanced Development of Primary Pancreatic Organoid Tumor Models for High-Throughput Phenotypic Drug Screening, the report can be accessed for…

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News • Equipment

A tiny, more cost-effective white blood cell counter might be available soon

A thin copper wire wrapped around a channel slightly thicker than a strand of hair could be the key to manufacturing a compact electronic device capable of counting white blood cells from the comfort of one’s home, a Kennesaw State University researcher says. Hoseon Lee, an assistant professor of electrical engineering in the Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering…

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News • Fact-checking

Inherited cancer and genetic testing - looking beyond the myths

Cancer is a genetic disease caused by abnormal changes over time to genes that control cell function, typically starting in a single cell (an acquired mutation) and often not linked to an inherited genetic mutation. In other words, most cancers happen by chance. Only about 5 to 10 percent of cancers are due to an inherited genetic mutation, says Monique Lubaton, MGC, CGC, cancer genetic counselor…

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News • Life expectancy

Mole-rats might teach us how to become old and healthy

Humans and other mammals have a lot in common. Depending on race, 80 to 98% of mammalian genetic makeup is identical to the human one. Nevertheless, the variety of life expectancy among mammals is huge; and so far, it was unclear, which impact the genetic makeup has on a species’ life span. In rodents, differences in life expectancy and morbidity during aging are particularly high: Despite…

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News • Abdominal fat

For women with kidney cancer, belly fat matters

Belly fat affects the odds of women surviving kidney cancer but not men, according to a new study by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Half of female kidney cancer patients with substantial abdominal fat at the time of diagnosis died within 3 1/2 years, while more than half of women with little belly fat were still alive 10 years later, the researchers found.…

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News • A disconcerting trend

Obesity is shifting cancer to young adults

A Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine researcher has compiled evidence from more than 100 publications to show how obesity increases risk of 13 different cancers in young adults. The meta-analysis describes how obesity has shifted certain cancers to younger age groups, and intensified cellular mechanisms promoting the diseases. Cancer typically associated with older adults over 50…

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News • External and brachytherapy

Prostate cancer: Combination of radiation therapies key to success

Prostate cancer is one of the most common cancers diagnosed nationally among men. The National Cancer Institute estimates 161,000 were diagnosed in 2017. While there are many treatment options for men with prostate cancer, a recent national study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association compared the effectiveness of treatments for high-risk prostate cancer. Said Daniel Krauss,…

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News • Breast cancer

Pre-treatment with targeted drugs reduces need for radical surgery

Extensive surgery involving mastectomy and removal of several lymph nodes can be safely avoided for more women with some types of breast cancer, if they receive targeted drugs before surgery, according to research presented at the 11th European Breast Cancer Conference. The study focused on women with HER2 positive breast cancer, an aggressive form of the disease, who were given a targeted drug…

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News • New FDA info

Can breast implants increase lymphoma risk?

The FDA has been closely tracking the relationship between breast implants and a rare type of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma since we first identified this possible association. We’ve been working to gather additional information to better characterize and quantify the risk so that patients and providers can have more informed discussions about breast implants,” said Binita Ashar, M.D., director of…

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News • Feline findings

Cats could help in development of anti-HIV drugs

Feline AIDS is caused by the Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV), which is very similar to the HIV-1 virus that affects millions of humans. While FIV does not infect humans, many groups research the virus to benefit cats, and perhaps more importantly, because of its many parallels with the AIDS virus. Despite the use of dedicated drugs, HIV-1 manages to thrive and multiply within the cell and…

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News • DNA repair

Proteins: Sentinels of the Genome

Throughout life, DNA is constantly being damaged by environmental and intrinsic factors and must be promptly repaired to prevent mutations, genomic instability, and cancer. Different types of damages are repaired by numerous proteins organized into damage-specific pathways. The proteins from different pathways must be spatially and temporally coordinated in order to efficiently repair complex DNA…

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News • Science superstar

Stephen Hawking leaves a lasting legacy

Stephen Hawking, a visionary physicist, as well as a pop culture icon, died March 14 2018 at the age of 76, leaving scientists, doctors, space enthusiasts and “Simpsons” fans alike to reflect on his contributions to modern cosmology and entertainment. Hande Ozdinler, an associate professor in the department of neurology in Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine, reflects on Hawkings…

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News • Right in the stomach

Helicobacter creates immune system blind spot

While gastritis and gastric ulcer disease used to be put down to stress and dietary factors, it was discovered in the 1980s that the actual culprit is infection with a bacterium, H. pylori. This pathogen is now classed as a type I carcinogen by the WHO, as it is the major risk factor for development of gastric carcinoma. Attempts to develop a vaccine against H. pylori have been unsuccessful and…

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News • Oncology imaging

‘Digistain’ technology offers revolution in detailed cancer diagnosis

A new imaging technology to grade tumour biopsies has been developed by a team of scientists led by the Department of Physics and the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial College London. Publishing their results in the journal Convergent Science Physical Oncology, they describe how their new method promises to significantly reduce the subjectivity and variability in grading the severity…

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News • Screening tumor samples

A molecular map of childhood cancers

Researchers led by Professor Stefan Pfister from the "Hopp Children's Cancer Center at the NCT Heidelberg" (KiTZ) have been able to draw an extremely detailed molecular map of childhood cancers. In close collaboration with the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK) and the Society for Pediatric Oncology and Hematology (GPOH), they screened almost 1,000 tumor samples from 24 cancer types for…

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News • PET-scan

Imaging agent helps predicting lung cancer therapy success

With the help of a new radioactive tracer, doctors can predict with more than 80 percent accuracy how well a widely-used lung cancer drug will combat tumors, according to researchers at Stanford. The researchers developed a PET scan-compatible imaging agent engineered to seek out a specific mutation found in nonsmall cell lung cancer (which accounts for about 80 percent of lung cancers), bind to…

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News • DNA analysis

Magnetic biosensor array simplifies cancer detection

In standard settings, the analysis of each DNA modification requires a carefully optimised assay that runs under specific conditions. This increases cost and labour and is a severe limitation to throughput. Now, however, researchers at Stanford University and the Technical University of Denmark have come up with a new method that will enable doctors to make a more precise diagnosis, prognosis and…

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Article • Cancer diagnostics

Progressing towards optical biopsy

Recognising malignant tissue remains a tricky task. While today, most patients undergo a biopsy, an invasive procedure where tissue is sampled, stained and assessed, researchers are exploring the potential of optical biopsy, the visual assessment of suspect tissue. The interest in optical biopsy ‘is indeed enormous,’ confirms Dr Thomas Bocklitz, physicist at Friedrich-Schiller University in…

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Article • Predictive biomarkers

Immunotherapy follow-up with MRI: the search is on

Immunotherapy is taking center stage in imaging, but patient follow-up with CT is no cookie and may fall short in the peripheral limbs, brain and bone marrow. MRI offers specific benefits in these situations, and, combined with PET, it may bring even more results. Research must be carried out on quantitative techniques and tracers developed to fully exploit that potential, Prof. Dow-Mu Koh…

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Article • Cancer pseudoprogression

Immunotherapy: Bigger lesions, better outcomes

With immunotherapy, bigger lesions may be spotted on CT, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that the disease is progressing. As treatment works, it can cause what has become known as pseudo disease progression; and this is just one of the many revolutions immunotherapy is triggering in oncology imaging, Professor Clarisse Dromain (Lausanne/CH) explained as she opened the session dedicated to this…

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Article • The InnerEye Project

AI drives analysis of medical images

Some time in the distant future artificial intelligence (AI) systems may displace radiologists and many other medical specialists. However, in a far more realistic future AI tools will assist radiologists by performing very complex functions with medical imaging data that are impossible or unfeasible today, according to a presentation at the RSNA/AAPM Symposium during the Radiological Society of…

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News • Replicas from the lab

Growing 'mini tumours' to personalise drug treatment

Testing cancer drugs on miniature replicas of a patient’s tumour could help doctors tell in advance which treatments will work, a major new study reports. The exciting new technique involves growing ‘mini tumours’ from biopsy samples – and could help end reliance on trial and error in selecting cancer treatments for patients where genetic tests are not predictive of response. Researchers…

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News • When proteins go bad

Data detectives uncover new suspect in Alzheimer's

The mass pursuit of a conspicuous suspect in Alzheimer’s disease may have encumbered research success for decades. Now, a new data analysis that has untangled evidence amassed in years of Alzheimer’s studies encourages researchers to refocus their investigations. Heaps of plaque formed from amyloid-beta that accumulate in afflicted brains are what stick out under the microscope in tissue…

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News • Histology in 3D

New staining method enables Nano-CT imaging of tissue samples

To date, examining patient tissue samples has meant cutting them into thin slices for histological analysis. This might now be set to change – thanks to a new staining method devised by an interdisciplinary team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM). This allows specialists to investigate three-dimensional tissue samples using the Nano-CT system also recently developed at TUM. Tissue…

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News • Large study

Five novel genetic changes linked to pancreatic cancer risk

In what is believed to be the largest pancreatic cancer genome-wide association study to date, researchers at the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center and the National Cancer Institute, and collaborators from over 80 other institutions worldwide discovered changes to five new regions in the human genome that may increase the risk of pancreatic cancer. The new findings represent one more step toward…

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News • Mitosis' structure

Understanding the inside of cancer cells

Cell division is an intricately choreographed ballet of proteins and molecules that divide the cell. During mitosis, microtubule-organizing centers (MTOCs) assemble the spindle fibers that separate the copying chromosomes of DNA. While scientists are familiar with MTOCs’ existence and the role they play in cell division, their actual physical structure remains poorly understood. Shruthi…

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News • DIY testing

Self-sampling identifies twice as many women at risk of cervical cancer

Using self-sampling followed by HPV testing, more than twice as many women at risk of developing cervical cancer could be identified and offered preventive treatment. This is shown by researchers at Uppsala University in the first randomised study in the world comparing two ways of identifying cervical cancer, published in the British Journal of Cancer.

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News • Responsive or not?

Breast cancer: Near-infrared light shows chemo beneficiaries

A new optical imaging system developed at Columbia University uses red and near-infrared light to identify breast cancer patients who will respond to chemotherapy. The imaging system may be able to predict response to chemotherapy as early as two weeks after beginning treatment. Findings from a first pilot study of the new imaging system—a noninvasive method of measuring blood flow dynamics in…

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Article • Immunotherapy

The DNA mismatch repair mechanism

A new genetic study by UK-based scientists suggests that immunotherapy drugs could prove to be an effective treatment for some breast cancer patients. Scientists from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, near Cambridge – one of the world’s leading genome centres – and their collaborators, have identified particular genetic changes in a DNA repair mechanism in breast cancer. Led by Dr Serena…

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News • New approach

Starving liver cancer

Scientists at the University of Delaware and the University of Illinois at Chicago have found a new way to kill liver cancer cells and inhibit tumor growth. First, they silence a key cellular enzyme, and then they add a powerful drug. They describe their methods in a new paper published in Nature Communications. This research could accelerate the development of new treatments for liver cancer,…

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News • Experimental drug

Fighting Hepatitis B with 'virus-cracking' molecules

Indiana University researchers have made an important step forward in the design of drugs that fight the hepatitis B virus, which can cause liver failure and liver cancer. It's estimated that 2 billion people worldwide have had a hepatitis B virus infection in their lifetime, with about 250 million -- including 2 million Americans -- living with chronic infection. Although a vaccine exists, there…

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News • In wine, there’s health

Low levels of alcohol might actually be good for your brain

While a couple of glasses of wine can help clear the mind after a busy day, new research shows that it may actually help clean the mind as well. The new study, which appears in the journal Scientific Reports, shows that low levels of alcohol consumption tamp down inflammation and helps the brain clear away toxins, including those associated with Alzheimer’s disease. “Prolonged intake of…

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Article • AEC syndrome

Cause of severe genetic disease identified

Mutations in the p63 protein lead to a number of disorders, but none is as severe as the AEC syndrome. Scientists at Goethe University Frankfurt in collaboration with a research group from the University of Naples Federico II have now discovered that this syndrome resembles diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s or ALS more closely than it does other p63-based syndromes. Their results,…

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News • HPV infections

Cervical cancer awareness

No woman should die from cervical cancer. Indeed, cervical cancer is the deadliest, yet most preventable gynecologic malignancy. According to the American Cancer Society, there are 13,000 new cases of invasive cervical cancer leading to 4,100 cancer-related deaths each year in the United States. Unfortunately, many of these deaths could have been prevented with either regular screening with Pap…

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Article • Old technique & new technology

Optoacoustics: the sound of cells

For centuries, hands, eyes and ears were the physicians’ most important instruments when it came to detecting and diagnosing disease. Today, one of the traditional techniques, percussion, is being revived, supported by state-of-the-art technology and dressed in a new name: optoacoustics. In one of the most exciting visionary ideas in modern healthcare short laser pulses (optics) are transmitted…

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Article • Smart techniques

Machine learning is starting to reach levels of human performance

Machine learning is playing an increasing role in computer-aided diagnosis, and Big Data is beginning to penetrate oncological imaging. However, some time may pass before it truly impacts on clinical practice, according to leading UK-based German researcher Professor Julia Schnabel, who spoke during the last ESMRMB annual meeting. Machine learning techniques are starting to reach levels of human…

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News • Research

High-cholesterol diet leads to colon cancer – let's find out why

New research from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) could help explain the link between a high-cholesterol diet and an elevated risk for colon cancer. In a study of mice, scientists from the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA discovered that boosting the animals’ cholesterol levels spurred intestinal stem cells to divide more quickly, enabling tumors to form 100 times…

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News • Discovery

‘Hijacker’ drives cancer in some patients with high-risk neuroblastoma

Researchers have identified mechanisms that drive about 10 percent of high-risk neuroblastoma cases and have used a new approach to show how the cancer genome “hijacks” DNA that regulates other genes. The resulting insights may help scientists develop more effective therapies, including precision medicines. The research involved investigators at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital;…

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News • Efferocytosis

Can stem cell exosome therapy reduce fatal heart disease in diabetes?

Macrophage cells routinely remove dead or dying cells to maintain the body homeostasis. Such removal becomes crucial after serious injury, especially the repair of dead heart muscle after a heart attack. University of Alabama at Birmingham researchers have preliminary data, with cultured cells or diabetic hearts, that diabetes impairs this removal of dead heart-muscle cells. They believe this…

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News • Animal testing

Can mice really mirror humans when it comes to cancer?

A new Michigan State University study is helping to answer a pressing question among scientists of just how close mice are to people when it comes to researching cancer. The findings, now published in PLOS Genetics, reveal how mice can actually mimic human breast cancer tissue and its genes, even more so than previously thought, as well as other cancers including lung, oral and esophagus.…

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News • Cancer research

Bioengineered soft microfibers improve T-cell production

T cells play a key role in the body’s immune response against pathogens. As a new class of therapeutic approaches, T cells are being harnessed to fight cancer, promising more precise, longer-lasting mitigation than traditional, chemical-based approaches. These “living drugs” are poised to transform medicine, with a growing number of cellular therapies receiving FDA-approval. A current…

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News • Melanoma therapy

Why pregnancy could literally save your skin

Researchers in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania have identified a new therapeutic target for the treatment of melanoma. For decades, research has associated female sex and a history of previous pregnancy with better outcomes after a melanoma diagnosis. Now, a research team from Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania says it may have…

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News • Marine bioluminescence

Deep sea creatures light the way to develop cancer-fighting therapies

A team of scientists at the Keck School of Medicine of USC is looking to some deep sea dwellers to create a better way to develop cancer-fighting therapies. Harnessing the power of the enzymes that give these marine animals the ability to glow, the team created a test that makes it easy for researchers to see whether a therapy is having its intended effect — killing cancer cells. The results of…

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News • Rhabdomyosarcoma

Muscle cancer - or is it?

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital oncologists have discovered the cell type that gives rise to rhabdomyosarcoma, the most prevalent soft tissue cancer in children. Previously, scientists thought the cancer arose from immature muscle cells, because the tumor resembled muscle under the microscope. However, the St. Jude researchers discovered the cancer arises from immature progenitors that…

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News • Milestone

Researcher grow hairy skin in a dish

Researchers at Indiana University School of Medicine have successfully developed a method to grow hairy skin from mouse pluripotent stem cells - a discovery that could lead to new approaches to model disease and new therapies for the treatment of skin disorders and cancers.

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News • Experimental medicine

Loophole in chronic lymphocytic leukemia treatment detected

A team of researchers in Italy and Austria has determined that a drug approved to treat chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) may be less effective in a particular subset of patients. The study, published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, reveals that ibrutinib has a diminished capacity to delocalize and kill tumor cells expressing an adhesive protein called CD49d, but combining ibrutinib…

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News • Blood Donor Month

Things you should know about blood donation

Donating blood is a tangible way to help people who are struggling with serious health conditions, yet many people may not think about it or make time for it. In January – which the American Red Cross has dubbed National Blood Donor Month – blood bank supplies are typically among the lowest of the year, as many people have been traveling or busy with the holidays. Inclement weather can also…

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Video • mpMRI

State-of-the-art MRI technology bypasses need for kidney biopsy

The most common type of tumor found in the kidney is generally quite small (less than 1.5 in). These tumors are usually found by accident when CAT scans are performed for other reasons and the serendipitous finding poses a problem for doctors. Are these tumors malignant and do they need to be surgically removed because they may threaten the patient’s life? Or are they benign and can be left…

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News • Macrophages

How immune cells help early breast cancer spread

Mount Sinai researchers have discovered that normal immune cells called macrophages, which reside in healthy breast tissue surrounding milk ducts, play a major role in helping early breast cancer cells leave the breast for other parts of the body, potentially creating metastasis before a tumor has even developed, according to a study published in Nature Communications. The macrophages play a role…

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News • Antiviral design

CAR-T gene therapy could provide long-term HIV protection

Through gene therapy, researchers engineered blood-forming stem cells (hematopoietic stem/progenitor cells, or HSPCs) to carry chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) genes to make cells that can detect and destroy HIV-infected cells. These engineered cells not only destroyed the infected cells, they persisted for more than two years, suggesting the potential to create long-term immunity from the virus…

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News • Patterns in blood serum

New marker detects fatal breast cancer earlier

A new marker that could be used to diagnose fatal breast cancer up to one year ahead of current methods has been identified in a study led by UCL. The study found that changes detected in a part of DNA which the researches named EFC#93 could suggest early signs of deadly breast cancer. Importantly, these abnormal patterns are present in blood serum before the cancer becomes detectable in the…

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Article • Recognition in new recommendations

MRI’s role in prostate cancer diagnosis

Lars Schimmöller MD, associate professor of radiology at Düsseldorf University Hospital, tackled current diagnosis of prostate cancer (PCa) and addressed tumour detection, staging, active surveillance and recurrence during the Medica Academy session on Imaging Update. He also highlighted how MRI helps improve biopsies and avoid unnecessary surgery in PCa.

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News • Nanovaccine

The flu shot of the future might look like this

For many of us, a flu shot is a fall routine. Roll up a sleeve, take a needle to the upper arm and hope this year’s vaccine matches whichever viruses circulate through the winter. The most common method to make that vaccine is now more than 70 years old. It requires growing viruses in special, pathogen-free chicken eggs. It’s not a quick and easy manufacturing process. And, at best, it…

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News • Light it up

Faster, more accurate cancer detection using nanoparticles

Using light-emitting nanoparticles, Rutgers University-New Brunswick scientists have invented a highly effective method to detect tiny tumors and track their spread, potentially leading to earlier cancer detection and more precise treatment. The technology could improve patient cure rates and survival times. “We’ve always had this dream that we can track the progression of cancer in real…

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News • Infiltrating tumors

Immune cells predict therapy response in breast cancer

When immune cells invade the tumor, this is usually considered a good sign because the body's own immune system appears to be responding to the cancer. In the case of certain types of breast cancer immune cells, namely so-called tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs), these can determine survival rates and predict the usefulness of chemotherapy. This was shown by the largest meta study on TIL…

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News • Enzyme discovery

Epigenetic agitator of pancreatic cancer cells identified

Genentech researchers have identified an enzyme that shifts pancreatic cancer cells to a more aggressive, drug-resistant state by epigenetically modifying the cells’ chromatin. The study, which will be published in the Journal of Cell Biology, suggests that targeting this enzyme could make pancreatic cancer cells more vulnerable to existing therapies that currently have only limited effect…

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News • Genetic engineering

CAR-T: Landmark cancer study sheds new light on immunotherapy

Loyola University Medical Center is the only Chicago center that participated in the pivotal clinical trial of a groundbreaking cancer treatment that genetically engineers a patient's immune system to attack cancer cells. Patrick Stiff, MD, director of Loyola's Cardinal Bernardin Cancer Center, is a co-author of the study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine. The treatment used in…

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News • More than the sum of its parts?

Combination strategy could hold promise for ovarian cancer

Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center researchers demonstrated that mice with ovarian cancer that received drugs to reactivate dormant genes along with other drugs that activate the immune system had a greater reduction of tumor burden and significantly longer survival than those that received any of the drugs alone. The study already spurred a clinical trial in ovarian cancer patients. The…

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News • Photoacoustic imaging

Breast cancer surgery without lab testing and pathology reports may soon be a reality

Determining where breast cancer ends and healthy tissue begins is a critical part of breast cancer surgery. Surgeons are used to working closely during surgery with anatomic pathologists who generate pathology reports that specify the surgical or tumor margin, an area of healthy tissue surrounding a tumor that also must be excised to ensure none of the tumor is left behind. This helps prevent the…

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News • Natural system

Papillomaviruses promote skin cancer

UV radiation has been known for a long time to be a risk factor for the development of skin cancer. Simultaneous infection with human papillomaviruses (HPV) has also been suspected to promote skin cancer, particularly in organ transplant recipients. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) have now been able to show for the first time in a natural system that papillomaviruses…

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News • A double-edged sword

Killing cancer cells can also drive tumor growth

Cancer therapies including radiation and chemotherapy seek to treat the disease by killing tumor cells. Now a team including researchers at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) have shown that the dead and dying cancer cells generated by chemotherapy and targeted cancer therapy paradoxically trigger inflammation that promotes aggressive tumor growth. In a study published today in the…

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Video • LIMA project

Agena Bioscience’s liquid biopsy technology awarded Horizon 2020 grant

Agena Bioscience, a global provider of molecular genetic solutions, announced it has been selected to participate as an innovative technology provider in the ‘Liquid biopsies and IMAging for improved cancer care’ (LIMA) project. The LIMA project has been awarded a EUR 6.3 million Horizon 2020 European Union research grant to develop an integrated approach for personalized cancer treatment.…

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News • Innovative approach

New “Swiss Army Knife” nanovaccine to battle tumors

Scientists are using their increasing knowledge of the complex interaction between cancer and the immune system to engineer increasingly potent anti-cancer vaccines. Now researchers at the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) have developed a synergistic nanovaccine packing DNA and RNA sequences that modulate the immune response, along with anti-tumor antigens, into…

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News • AT/RT and medulloblastoma

Promising target for treating brain tumors in children

Findings published in Oncotarget offer new hope for children with highly aggressive brain tumors like atypical teratoid/rhabdoid tumor (AT/RT) and medulloblastoma. Previously, the authors of the study have shown that an experimental drug that inhibits polo-like kinase 4 (PLK4) stopped pediatric brain tumor growth in vitro. Now, they have demonstrated its success in an animal model – the drug…

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Article • Local and elegant

Extending life with TIPS and TACE

Liver disease is widespread in Germany. It is, in fact, the most common cause of death in patients under the age of 40, with liver cirrhosis, which can develop into liver cancer, playing a major role here. These days, modern, comprehensive treatment concepts are unimaginable without interventional radiology, for liver cirrhosis as well as liver cancer. Prof. Dr. Christian Stroszczynski, Director…

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Article • Early detection

From detection to treatment response

Imaging is increasingly useful in detecting colorectal cancer (CRC) liver metastases and evaluating how these lesions respond to treatment. Dr Daniele Regge reviewed all the latest advances during last September’s Madrid meeting of the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO)

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News • Meyenburg Award

A high distinction for a pioneer in liquid biopsy

Nitzan Rosenfeld from Cancer Research UK in Cambridge is being honored with the 2017 Meyenburg Award, which carries a €50,000 monetary prize. He receives the award for his excellent work on the detection of tumor DNA in the blood. Rosenfeld has made seminal contributions to advancing a method for detecting cancer DNA in the blood to applicability in cancer medicine. The Meyenburg-Award will be…

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Article • Smarter predictions

Artificial Intelligence helping to detect breast cancer

Scientists are using Artificial Intelligence (AI) to support more effective breast cancer detection. The researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH), and Harvard Medical School, are using the machine learning system to predict whether breast lesions identified from a biopsy will…

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News • Key in the stem cells

This is why testicular cancer is so responsive to chemo

Cornell researchers have taken a major step toward answering a key question in cancer research: Why is testicular cancer so responsive to chemotherapy, even after it metastasizes? Professional cyclist Lance Armstrong, for example, had testicular cancer that spread to his lung and brain, yet he made a full recovery after conventional chemotherapy. The key to such success appears to lie in the…

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News • New study

Prostate Health Index drastically cuts down biopsy rate

A study published in Prostate Cancer and Prostatic Diseases demonstrated that physicians elected to perform fewer biopsies when Prostate Health Index (phi) testing was included in their overall, routine, clinical assessment. Phi testing is recommended for men presenting with elevated serum total prostate-specific antigen (PSA) in the 4-10 ng/mL range and a non-suspicious digital rectal exam…

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News • Possible vaccine in sight

A new strategy for prevention of liver cancer development

Primary liver cancer is now the second leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide, and its incidences and mortality are increasing rapidly in the United Stated. In late stages of the malignancy, there are no effective treatments or drugs. However, an unexpected finding made by a team of University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers sheds light on the development of a new…

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News • Deafness reversal

Inner ear stem cells may someday restore hearing

Want to restore hearing by injecting stem cells into the inner ear? Well, that can be a double-edged sword. Inner ear stem cells can be converted to auditory neurons that could reverse deafness, but the process can also make those cells divide too quickly, posing a cancer risk, according to a study led by Rutgers University–New Brunswick scientists. The encouraging news is that turning stem…

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News • ABC4 III

Combined therapies increase adverse side effects

Patients with advanced breast cancer who are treated with a combination of drugs that target specific molecules important for cancer development and also the hormones that are driving it are at increased risk of suffering adverse side effects. In new research presented at the Advanced Breast Cancer Fourth International Consensus Conference (ABC 4), researchers have shown that combining targeted…

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News • ABC4 conference

Delaying breast cancer progression is key to sustain life quality

Patients with advanced breast cancer have a better quality of life for longer if the progression of their disease can be delayed, according to new results presented at the Advanced Breast Cancer Fourth International Consensus Conference (ABC 4) in Lisbon. Professor Nadia Harbeck, head of the Breast Cancer Centre at the University of Munich (Germany), told the meeting that analysis of results from…

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Article • Ultrasound

Controversies and practices in breast cancer screening

A controversy regarding the benefit of early screening programmes for breast cancer continues. Germany, Austria and Switzerland have developed individual strategies. European Hospital asked three experts from these countries to outline each chosen system. Markus Hahn MD, senior consultant at the University Breast Centre in Tübingen, Martin Daniaux, MD, Head of Breast Diagnostics at the Breast…

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Article • Abbreviated MRI

Seeking a view through the dense breast

Despite rigorous quality assurance of breast cancer screening programs, ‘both, over- and under-diagnosis of breast cancer is a challenge,’ says leading radiologist Christiane K Kuhl, from the Department of Diagnostic and Interventional Radiology, at the University of Aachen, Germany. ‘Mammography is a good screening test – but has its limitations especially, but not only, in women with…

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News • Early diagnostics

Sixty-five new genetic risk markers for breast cancer discovered

Until now, familial breast cancer has only partly been linkable to genetic risk markers. In a worldwide joint effort, researchers have now identified further genetic variants that affect the risk for breast cancer. The study, which was conducted with participation of researchers from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and Heidelberg University Hospital, has now been published in Nature.…

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News • Cancer research

Researchers release the brakes on the immune system

Many tumors possess mechanisms to avoid destruction by the immune system. For instance, they misuse the natural “brakes” in the immune defense mechanism, which normally prevent an excessive immune response. Researchers at the University of Bonn have now been able to take off one of these brakes. The study, which involved colleagues from Hamburg and Würzburg, could pave the way for more…

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News • Cancer research

Esophageal cancer “cell of origin” identified

Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC) researchers have identified cells in the upper digestive tract that can give rise to Barrett’s esophagus, a precursor to esophageal cancer. The discovery of this “cell of origin” promises to accelerate the development of more precise screening tools and therapies for Barrett’s esophagus and esophageal adenocarcinoma, the fastest growing form of…

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News • Research discovery

New blood test may diagnose breast cancer

In a potential major breakthrough in breast cancer research, scientists at the Center for Translational Cancer Research (CTCR) at the Helen F. Graham Cancer Center & Research Institute of Christiana Care Health System have developed a revolutionary new blood test to diagnose breast cancer.

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News • Tumor analysis

Immune response to ovarian cancer may predict survival

A group of international cancer researchers led by investigators from Mayo Clinic and University of New South Wales Sydney has found that the level of a type of white blood cell, called tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes, present in the tumors of patients with high-grade ovarian cancer may predict a patient’s survival. “We know that a type of tumor-infiltrating lymphocyte called cytotoxic CD8 are…

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News • Intraoperative molecular imaging

Tumor dye makes cancerous lymph nodes glow during surgery

Surgeons at Penn Medicine are using a fluorescent dye that makes cancerous cells glow in hopes of identifying suspicious lymph nodes during head and neck cancer procedures. Led by Jason G. Newman, MD, FACS, an associate professor of Otorhinolaryngology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, the study is the first in the world to look at the effectiveness of…

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News • Predicting cognitive decline

Odor identification problems may be a warning bell for dementia

A long-term study of nearly 3,000 adults, aged 57 to 85, found that those who could not identify at least four out of five common odors were more than twice as likely as those with a normal sense of smell to develop dementia within five years. Although 78 percent of those tested were normal – correctly identifying at least four out of five scents – about 14 percent could name just three out…

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News • Phosphatidic acid phosphatase

A fat-regulating enzyme could hold the key to obesity and diseases

It had already been known that the enzyme known as phosphatidic acid phosphatase plays a crucial role in regulating the amount of fat in the human body. Controlling it is therefore of interest in the fight against obesity. But scientists at Rutgers University-New Brunswick have now found that getting rid of the enzyme entirely can increase the risk of cancer, inflammation and other ills.

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News • Handheld mass spectrometer

This pen may be mightier than cancer

A team of scientists and engineers at The University of Texas at Austin has invented a powerful tool that rapidly and accurately identifies cancerous tissue during surgery, delivering results in about 10 seconds—more than 150 times as fast as existing technology.

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News • Oncology

A tiny device offers insights to how cancer spreads

As cancer grows, it evolves. Individual cells become more aggressive and break away to flow through the body and spread to distant areas. What if there were a way to find those early aggressors? How are they different from the rest of the cells? And more importantly: Is there a way to stop them before they spread?

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News • Study

Zika virus could be used to treat brain cancer

Recent outbreaks of Zika virus have revealed that the virus causes brain defects in unborn children. But researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and the University of California, San Diego report that the virus could eventually be used to target and kill cancer cells in the brain.

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News • Substance exchange

Shuttling proteins work like a revolving door

New research reveals how shuttling proteins known as importins control the function of nuclear pores. An insight that could help in the fight against cancer.

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News • Combination approach

Radiation treatment extends life expectancy for patients with inoperable lung cancer

Patients with unresectable, or inoperable, lung cancer are often given a dismal prognosis, with low rates of survival beyond a few years. Researchers exploring combination therapies have recently discovered improved survival rates by up to one year when patients treated with a newly formulated chemotherapy regimen are also given radiation therapy.

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News • DNA fragments

Using barcodes to trace blood cell development

There are various concepts about how blood cells develop. However, they are based almost exclusively on experiments that solely reflect snapshots. In a publication in Nature, scientists from the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg now present a novel technique that captures the process in a dynamic way.

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News • Sugar molecules

Sweet help for cancer detection

Scientists from the University of Würzburg have synthesized a complex sugar molecule which specifically binds to the tumor protein Galectin-1. This could help to recognize tumors at an early stage and to combat them in a targeted manner.

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Article • Mutated DNA in blood

Liquid biopsy detects tumour changes in real time

New findings from a scientific collaboration between the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ), the National Centre for Tumour Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg and the Thoraxklinik Heidelberg suggest liquid biopsy as a promising tool to monitor lung cancer patient tumours early. Scientists associated liquid biopsy readouts with clinical data and could track tumour responses to cancer drugs in real-time.

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News • T-cell study

Breakthrough in boosting the immune system against cancer and infections

An international research team led by Université de Montréal medical professor Christopher Rudd, director of research in immunology and cell therapy at Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital Research Centre, has identified a key new mechanism that regulates the ability of T-cells of the immune system to react against foreign antigens and cancer.

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News • 'Mito-riboscins'

Scientists stumble across new method of making antibiotics

Cancer researchers in the UK may have stumbled across a solution to reverse antibiotic drug resistance and stop infections like MRSA. Experts warn we are decades behind in the race against superbugs having already exploited naturally occurring antibiotics, with the creation of new ones requiring time, money and ingenuity. But a team of scientists at the University of Salford say they may have…

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News • Biomarker validation

Plodding toward a pancreatic cancer screening test

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most deadly types of malignancies, with a 5-year survival rate after late diagnosis of only about 5%. The majority of patients—about 80%—receive their diagnosis too late for surgery. The disease spreads quickly and resists chemotherapy. In short, there is an urgent need for diagnostic tools to identify this cancer in its earliest stages.

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News • Cancer-related hair loss

Paxman helps launch global scalp cooling collaboration

Led by six globally-recognised experts in cancer care, the organisation known as CHILL, Cancer-related Hair Loss, International Leadership and Linkage, announced today an initiative to collect and track evidence-based patient information and clinical guidance. Data will be used to establish clinical best practices to ensure maximum effectiveness of scalp cooling to minimise chemotherapy-induced…

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News • Structural insights

Cancer cells may streamline their genomes to proliferate more easily

Research from the Stowers Institute provides evidence suggesting that cancer cells might streamline their genomes in order to proliferate more easily. The study, conducted in both human and mouse cells, shows that cancer genomes lose copies of repetitive sequences known as ribosomal DNA. While downsizing might enable these cells to replicate faster, it also seems to render them less able to…

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News • Understanding procedures

Researchers create ‘Rosetta Stone’ to decode immune recognition

Scientists from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have developed an algorithm that functions like a Rosetta Stone to help decipher how the immune system recognizes and binds antigens. The research should aid development of more personalized cancer immunotherapy and advance diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases.

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News • CRISPR-Cpf1

Firefly gene illuminates ability to edit human genome

Scientists on the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) have improved a state-of-the-art gene-editing technology to advance the system’s ability to target, cut and paste genes within human and animal cells—and broadening the ways the CRISPR-Cpf1 editing system may be used to study and fight human diseases.

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News • DNA manipulation

Chaos in cancer cells: Mysterious gene transcripts after therapy

Drugs that are used in cancer therapy to erase epigenetic alterations in cancer cells simultaneously promote the production of countless mysterious gene transcripts, scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) now report in Nature Genetics. The substances activate hidden regulatory elements in DNA. The unusual gene activity has the potential to stimulate the immune system – a…

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News • Cancer development

Tumor induction from a distance

Current view is that cancer development is initiated from cells that acquire initial DNA mutations. These in turn provoke additional defects, and ultimately the affected cells begin to proliferate in an uncontrolled manner to develop primary tumors. These can later spread and create metastases, or secondary tumors, in other parts of the body. However, according to a study by researchers at the…

News • Diabetes research

Healing burn wounds with cell therapy

An experimental treatment in mice allows the reprogramming of blood cells in order to promote the healing process of cutaneous wounds. This approach could prove to be beneficial in healing challenging wounds in diabetics and major-burn victims.

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News • Neuro-oncology

Study provides better understanding of how brain tumors ‘feed’

All cancer tumors have one thing in common – they must feed themselves to grow and spread, a difficult feat since they are usually in a tumor microenvironment with limited nutrients and oxygen. A study at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center has revealed new details about how an enzyme called acetyl-CoA synthetase 2 (ACSS2) allows brain tumors to grow despite their harsh…

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News • Study

Link between blood sugar and brain cancer found

New research further illuminates the surprising relationship between blood sugar and brain tumors and could begin to shed light on how certain cancers develop. While many cancers are more common among those with diabetes, cancerous brain tumors called gliomas are less common among those with elevated blood sugar and diabetes, a study from The Ohio State University has found. The discovery builds…

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News • Global database

Scientists create leukaemia online tool to aid search for cure

Finding a cure for a rare type of blood cancer could be accelerated by a new virtual platform that allows researchers easy access to data from patient samples generated by laboratories around the world. LEUKomics, which has been launched by scientists at the University of Glasgow and the University of Melbourne, is a comprehensive database describing over 100 chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML)…

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News • Going Viral

An unusual 'friend' to help fight ovarian cancer

In some cases, the Lassa virus starts with a fever and general weakness, moving toward headache, muscle pain, possible facial swelling, deafness, and worse. About 15 percent of patients hospitalized with severe cases die. Lassa fever is contagious, endemic in West Africa, and Dr. Anthony van den Pol thinks he can use it to cure ovarian cancer.

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News • Breast Cancer

Biomarker Identified for Likely Aggressive, Early Stage Breast Cancer

The one-size-fits-all approach to early stage breast cancer creates a paradox: Millions of dollars are spent on unnecessary surgeries and radiation to treat women with low-risk ‘in situ’ lesions, an estimated 85% of which would never progress to invasive cancers. Meanwhile, the standard conservative treatment is insufficient for many early-stage tumors that have progressed past the in situ…

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News • DNA

DNA labels predict mortality

Methyl labels in the DNA regulate the activity of our genes and, thus, have a great influence on health and disease. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center and from the Saarland cancer registry have now revealed that an altered methylation status at only ten specific sites in the genome can indicate that mortality is increased by up to seven times. Smoking has a particularly…

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News • Baldness

Why do shorter men go bald more often?

Short men may have an increased risk of becoming bald prematurely. An international genetic study under the leadership of the University of Bonn at least points in this direction. During the study, the scientists investigated the genetic material of more than 20,000 men. Their data show that premature hair loss is linked to a range of various physical characteristics and illnesses. The work has…

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Article • Deep Learning

Philips and LabPON plan to create world’s largest pathology database

Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) and LabPON, the first clinical laboratory to transition to 100% histopathology digital diagnosis, today announced its plans to create a digital database of massive aggregated sets of annotated pathology images and big data utilizing Philips IntelliSite Pathology Solution1. The database will provide pathologists with a wealth of clinical information for the…

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News • Liver-Surgery

Ultrasound scalpel destroys liver tumors

Focused ultrasound can effectively destroy tumor cells. Until now, this method has only been used for organs such as the prostate and uterus. At the European Congress of Radiology, Fraunhofer researchers will present a method, developed as part of the TRANS-FUSIMO EU project, that enables focused ultrasound treatment of the liver, an organ that moves while breathing. In the future, this could…

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Article • Breast Cancer

Mammography screening with MR

Breast cancer screening is traditionally a mammography – ultrasound business but abbreviated protocols could enable more women to be imaged with MR and receive treatment earlier, a leading researcher will show during the annual Garmisch MR meeting.

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News • Sarcoidosis

Penn Medicine Launches First Apple ResearchKit App for Sarcoidosis Patients

Penn Medicine today launched its first Apple ResearchKit app, focused on patients with sarcoidosis, an inflammatory condition that can affect the lungs, skin, eyes, heart, brain, and other organs. The effort marks Penn’s first time using modules from Apple’s ResearchKit framework, as part of the institution’s focus on mobile health and innovative research strategies.

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Scientists tissue-engineer part of human stomach

Researchers at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center grew functional stomach and intestinal tissues to study diseases and new drugs. They use pluripotent stem cells to generate human stomach tissues in a petri dish that produce acid and digestive enzymes.

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News • Positron emission tomography

New imaging method detects prostate cancer

An international group of researchers report success in mice of a method of using positron emission tomography (PET) scans to track, in real time, an antibody targeting a hormone receptor pathway specifically involved in prostate cancer.

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Article • Surgery 4.0

Robots will not see off human specialists

Big Data, automation, and artificial intelligence – no doubt, all these developments will have an impact on surgery. During our interview, Professor Hubertus Feußner, Head of the interdisciplinary research group ‘Minimally invasive interdisciplinary therapy intervention’ at the Technical University Munich, Germany, and Professor Christoph Thümmler, Professor for eHealth at Edinburgh…

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News • Oncology

Treatment hope would leave liver cancer cells in limbo

Scientists have shown that a mutation in a gene called Arid1b can cause liver cancer. The gene normally protects against cancer by limiting cell growth, but when mutated it allows cells to grow uncontrollably. The researchers have shown that two existing drugs can halt this growth in human cells. This points to a new approach to treating liver cancer.

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Article • Contrast enhancement

Sonic boom with bubbles

Illuminating blood vessels, opening the blood-brain barrier and delivering drugs. What will be the next big thing that tiny microbubbles can do?

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Interview • Endoscopy

New devices deliver exceptional clarity

This year Pentax Medical launches three premium products for use in gastroenterology, Ear nose and throat (ENT) and bronchoscopy. These result from highly focused global research and development, for which Mike Drexel, the company’s Chief Technology Officer, is responsible. In our interview he discusses how the firm’s globalised approach to product research and development has taken shape.

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News • Oncology

Nanoparticle creates ‘wave of destruction’ in cancer cells

Nanoparticles known as Cornell dots, or C dots, have shown great promise as a therapeutic tool in the detection and treatment of cancer. Now, the ultrasmall particles – developed more than a dozen years ago by Ulrich Wiesner, the Spencer T. Olin Professor of Engineering at Cornell University – have shown they can do something even better: kill cancer cells without attaching a cytotoxic drug.

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News • Melanoma treatment

Dermatology develops an effective immunotherapy against solid cancer

Melanomas account among the eight most frequent deadly cancers in Europe and Northern America. Two major clinical criteria separate melanomas from most other cancers: the risk to die from a melanoma is a question of being less or more than 1 mm – and not a question of cm. About 95% of patients with melanomas ≤0.5 mm in thickness are clinically cured by early detection and appropriate melanoma…

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News • Microscopy

Watching molecular machines at work

When one cell divides into two - that is how all forms of life are propagated - the newly born daughter cells have to be equipped with everything they will need in their tiny lives. Most important of all is that they inherit a complete copy of the genetic information from their mother cell. If this is not the case because a wrong number of chromosomes – on which the genetic information is…

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Solid-State nanopores unravel twisted DNA mystery

Cancer thrives when mutated cells undergo frequent division. Most anti-cancer drugs work by inserting themselves in between the DNA base pairs that encode our genetic information. This process is known as intercalation, and it can result in subtle changes to the DNA molecule’s geometric shape or tertiary structure. These structural changes interfere with the DNA’s transcription and a cell’s…

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News • Oncology

Nanovaccine could enhance cancer immunotherapy

NIBIB researchers have created a nanovaccine that could make a current approach to cancer immunotherapy more effective while also reducing side effects. The nanovaccine helps to efficiently deliver a unique DNA sequence to immune cells – a sequence derived from bacterial DNA and used to trigger an immune reaction. The nanovaccine also protects the DNA from being destroyed inside the body, where…

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Overcoming multidrug-resistant cancer with smart nanoparticles

Multidrug resistance (MDR) is the mechanism by which many cancers develop resistance to chemotherapy drugs, resulting in minimal cell death and the expansion of drug-resistant tumors. To address the problem of resistance, researchers at the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have developed nanoparticles that…

News • Oncology

Infra-red light to deteact early signs of oesophageal cancer

Researchers at the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute sprayed a dye on oesophageal tissue samples taken from people with Barrett’s oesophagus – a condition that increases the risk of developing oesophageal cancer. The dye sticks to healthy oesophageal cells but not to pre-cancerous cells. They then shone near-infrared light - which is just beyond the red colours that our eyes can normally…

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News • Paediatric

Leukaemia Blood Testing Has 'Massive Potential'

Researchers at The University of Manchester have unlocked the potential of a new test which could revolutionise the way doctors diagnose and monitor a common childhood Leukaemia. Dr Suzanne Johnson says that cancerous acute lymphoblastic leukaemia cells produce and release special structures that can be traced in the blood. The discovery could have major implications on the diagnosis, monitoring,…

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Interview • Personalized medicine

“We have to establish a digital health network”

Healthcare and business professionals as well as scientists consider Big Data a promising technology to advance medical research and patient care. “Big Data analysis allows us to better tailor therapies based on the individual patient’s status, that is to implement personalized healthcare,” says Dominik Bertram, Development Manager at SAP and Head of the development field “Personalized…

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News • Oncology

Loophole for cancer cells

Many cancers only become a mortal danger if they form metastases elsewhere in the body. Such secondary tumours are formed when individual cells break away from the main tumour and travel through the bloodstream to distant areas of the body. To do so, they have to pass through the walls of small blood vessels. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Heart and Lung Research in Bad Nauheim and…

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Plasma: A technology to improve bone healing?

Cold plasma looks like the glow from the “Star Wars” blue light saber but this beam of energy, made of electrons that change polarity at micro-second or nanosecond speeds, could help bones heal faster, according to researcher from the Thomas Jefferson University.

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News • Low Oxygen, High Risk

How tumors adapt to become more aggressive

One of the many reasons tumors are so difficult to treat is that they are able to adapt whenever they are exposed to unfavorable conditions. Hypoxia, or a lack of oxygen, is one example of a phenomenon that should weaken the tumor, but instead, the malignant cells are able to compensate and drive more aggressive disease behavior.

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News • Research

New Biomarker for cancer immunotherapy?

The Ligand PD-L1 is one of the most important targets for cancer immunotherapy with checkpoint inhibitors. But not all tumors have sufficient quantities of PD-L1 ligands on their surface. Scientists from the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK) have now shown that different types of cancer possess different quantities of PD-L1-Gen copies. Genetic analysis of the PD-L1 gene may in the future help to…

News • Staphylococcus aureus

Women more likely to die within 30-days from bacterial blood infection

Clinicians around the world have long suspected that bacteraemia due to Staphylococcus aureus has a worse outcome in women compared to men, but direct evidence has been elusive. A study just published confirms that significantly more women than men diagnosed with Staphylococcus aureus bacteraemia (SAB) – a blood infection of the common bacteria – die within 30 days.

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Article • Drug delivery

Biotherapeutics strike cancer cell growth

Many drug treatments do not work due to their poor ability to reach their intended targets inside patients’ cells. To address this, researchers at Cardiff University’s Schools of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, and Biosciences have designed a highly efficient method to improve the delivery of therapeutic molecules into diseased cells such as those in stomach cancer, breast cancer and…

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News • Photoacoustic imaging

Promising option for noninvasive monitoring of prostate cancer

While active surveillance is often recommended for patients with nonaggressive prostate cancer to reduce unnecessary treatment, the challenge for clinicians is to monitor and distinguish early-stage tumors from advanced cancers. A team of scientists led by researchers from Roswell Park Cancer Institute have demonstrated that photoacoustic imaging (PAI) may be an effective tool for more accurately…

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News • E. Coli

The ideal transport vehicle for next-gen vaccines?

Most people recoil at the thought of ingesting E. coli. But what if the headline-grabbing bacteria could be used to fight disease? Researchers experimenting with harmless strains of E. coli — yes, the majority of E. coli are safe and important to healthy human digestion — are working toward that goal. They have developed an E. coli-based transport capsule designed to help next-generation…

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News • BRIM

Technology helps ID aggressive early breast cancer

When a woman is diagnosed with the earliest stage of breast cancer, how aggressive should her treatment be? Will the non-invasive cancer become invasive? Or is it a slow-growing variety that will likely never be harmful? Researchers at the University of Michigan developed a new technology that can identify aggressive forms of ductal carcinoma in situ, or stage 0 breast cancer, from non-aggressive…

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News • Breast cancer

Artificial intelligence diagnoses with high accuracy

Pathologists have been largely diagnosing disease the same way for the past 100 years, by manually reviewing images under a microscope. But new work suggests that computers can help doctors improve accuracy and significantly change the way cancer and other diseases are diagnosed. A research team from Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and Harvard Medical School (HMS) recently developed…

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Microfluidic device tests effects of electric fields on cancer cells

Researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology research center in Singapore have developed a new microfluidic device that tests the effects of electric fields on cancer cells. They observed that a range of low-intensity, middle-frequency electric fields effectively stopped breast and lung cancer cells from growing and spreading, while having no adverse effect on neighboring healthy cells.

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News • Dividing T cells

Target for improving cancer immunotherapy

When an immune T cell divides into two daughter cells, the activity of an enzyme called mTORC1, which controls protein production, splits unevenly between the progeny, producing two cells with different properties. Such "asymmetric division," uncovered by Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center researchers using lab-grown cells and specially bred mice, could offer new ways to enhance cancer…

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Article • Hybrid

The whole is greater than the sum of its parts

‘The combination of nuclear medicine and modern imaging procedures such as CT and MRI is becoming increasingly important in the diagnosis, treatment planning and aftercare of cancerous diseases,’ explains Professor Katrine Åhlström Riklund, who presides over the newly established European Society for Hybrid Medical Imaging, ESHI.

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News • Virology

Tricks of ticking time bomb Hepatitis B virus

Hepatitis B virus (HBV) causes hepatitis B, an infectious disease that afflicts 230 million people worldwide, thereof 440 000 in Germany. Persistence of the virus in liver cells leads to progressive organ damage in the patient and contributes to a high risk of cirrhosis and liver cancer development. Providing a new paradigm to hepatitis B understanding, researchers at the German Cancer Research…

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News • Regenerated Bone

Living bone replicates original anatomical structure

A new technique developed by Gordana Vunjak-Novakovic, the Mikati Foundation Professor of Biomedical Engineering at Columbia Engineering and professor of medical sciences (in Medicine) at Columbia University, repairs large bone defects in the head and face by using lab-grown living bone, tailored to the patient and the defect being treated. This is the first time researchers have grown living…

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News • Mutation

Prevention of genetic breast cancer within reach

An international team led by researchers at the Austrian Institute of Molecular Biotechnology (IMBA) in Vienna and the University of Maryland School of Medicine in Baltimore discovered that genetically determined breast cancer can be largely prevented by blocking a bone gene. An already approved drug could be quickly available and would then be the first breast cancer prevention drug.

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News • Active substance

Promising treatment prospects for invasive breast cancer

Scientists from the University of Zurich have been able to understand for the first time why many cancer cells adapt relatively quickly to the treatment with therapeutic antibodies in invasive forms of breast cancer. Instead of dying off, they are merely rendered inactive. The researchers have now developed an active substance that kills the cancer cells very effectively without harming healthy…

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News • vitiligo

Natural killer cells have a memory

Researchers at the University of Bonn and the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität of Munich have decoded a new mechanism of how the immune system can specifically attack pigmented cells of the skin. It was previously believed that natural killer cells did not have an immunological memory for the body's own tissues. However, the scientists have now showed that these immune cells can indeed…

News • Politics

Liquid biopsy test from Roche gets FDA approval

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the cobas EGFR Mutation Test v2, a blood-based companion diagnostic for the cancer drug Tarceva (erlotinib). This is the first FDA-approved, blood-based genetic test that can detect epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) gene mutations in non-small cell lung cancer patients. Such mutations are present in approximately 10-20 percent of non-small cell…

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More light on cancer

The group of Russian and French researchers, with the participation of scientists from the Lomonosov Moscow State University, has succeeded to synthesize nanoparticles of ultrapure silicon, which exhibited the property of efficient photoluminescence, i.e., secondary light emission after photoexcitation. These particles were able to easily penetrate into cancer cells and it allowed to use them as…

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News • Targeted treatments

Gene therapy against brain cancer

A team from the International School for Advanced Studies (SISSA) in Trieste has obtained very promising results by applying gene therapy to glioblastoma. Tests in vitro and in vivo on mice provided very clear-cut results, and modelling demonstrates that the treatment targets at least six different points of tumour metabolism. Gene therapy, a technique that selectively attacks a tumour, might…