Molecular Profiling Redefines The Nature Of Malignancy And Increases The Adoption Of Targeted Therapeutics
April 21, 2008
Identification of novel cancer-related targets and pathways is redefining our understanding of the nature of malignancy.
Molecular profiling is prompting new, more detailed classifications of malignancy enabling the development of specific/personalized cancer therapies.
In breast cancer, for example, classification has been extended to include metastatic sites (bone, brain), expression of HEr2, and hormone receptor status.
Standard chemo works better against metastatic BRCA1/2 breast cancer than against sporadic tumors
April 18, 2008
By Emma Mason, European CanCer Organisation (ECCO)
The first study to investigate the effects of chemotherapy on metastatic breast cancer in women with the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation has shown that standard chemotherapy works better in these patients than in women without the BRCA1/2 mutation.
The authors of a study presented at the 6th European Breast Cancer Conference (EBCC-6) in Berlin found that women with BRCA2-associated breast cancer had a significantly higher response rate, a longer time without the disease progressing, and a longer overall survival when treated with anthracycline-based regimens than did women with sporadic breast cancers that were not associated with BRCA1/2.
Women with BRCA1-associated breast cancer also did better than women with sporadic breast cancer, but the rates were not statistically significant.
New type of drug shrinks primary breast cancer tumors significantly in just 6 weeks
April 18, 2008
By Mary Rice, European CanCer Organisation (ECCO)
Research provides leads to a new target in cancer treatment — the cancer stem cell
A drug that targets the cell surface receptors that play an important role in many types of cancer can bring about significant tumour regression in breast cancer after only six weeks of use, a scientist told the 6th European Breast Cancer Conference (EBCC-6).
Core Biopsy Appears to Release Breast Cancer Cells to Distant Organs
April 17, 2008
By Kristina Rebelo, DocGuide.com
Evidence has been found of metastatic dissemination after core needle biopsy in an in vivo model of human tumour metastasis, researchers reported in a poster presented here at the Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR 2008).
In 2005, the American College of Surgeons Consensus Conference issued an official statement regarding the diagnostic workup of image-detected breast abnormalities, saying that breast cancer treatment should optimised by making a definitive diagnosis prior to entering the operating room. Guidelines include the use of image-guided percutaneous needle biopsy as the gold standard for diagnosing image-detected breast abnormalities.
Several studies have demonstrated tumour cell displacement along needle tracks and into draining lymph nodes following core needle biopsies, but the clinical consequences are a subject of ongoing debate.
First mouse model created mimics cancer spread
April 15, 2008
U.S. biologists say they have developed the first laboratory mouse model that mimics the spread of cancer through the human body.
Using a novel cell line, the Boston College team discovered one of the body’s primary defensive cells plays a role in cancer’s attack.
Thomas Seyfried, who led the study, said the development of a new animal model — a line of cancer cells injected into a laboratory mouse — displays the full spectrum of systemic metastatic cancer in humans. The finding, he said, removes a “scientific stumbling block” in advancing cancer research and potential treatments.
“What we have developed is the first model in the mouse that replicates all of the hallmarks of metastatic cancer,” said Seyfried. “Now, we have a tool that can be effective in identifying basic mechanisms and new therapies to treat the disease.”
The study is reported in the online version of the International Journal of Cancer and was presented Sunday in San Diego during the annual meeting of the American Association of Cancer Research.
60 Minutes: Novice Inventor Builds Machine that May Cure Cancer
April 14, 2008
By CBS 60 Minutes
What if we told you that a guy with no background in science or medicine-not even a college degree-has come up with what may be one of the most promising breakthroughs in cancer research in years?
Well it’s true, and if you think it sounds improbable, consider this: he did it with his wife’s pie pans and hot dogs.
His name is John Kanzius, and he’s a former businessman and radio technician who built a radio wave machine that has cancer researchers so enthusiastic about its potential they’re pouring money and effort into testing it out.
Here’s the important part: if clinical trials pan out-and there’s still a long way to go-the Kanzius machine will zap cancer cells all through your body without the need for drugs or surgery and without side effects. None at all. At least that’s the idea.
Circulating Tumor Cells Confirmed as Adverse Prognostic Sign in Metastatic Breast Cancer
April 9, 2008
Researchers from France have reported that circulating tumor cells in the blood may accurately indicate prognosis and tumor response to treatment for patients with metastatic breast cancer. The details of this study were published in the March 2008 issue of the Annals of Oncology.
In women with localized breast cancer, the presence of tumor cells in the bone marrow has been predictive of a worse outcome, and bone marrow examinations have been suggested as routine staging procedures. A previous multi-center trial determined that women with breast cancer who have five or more circulating tumor cells have shorter progression-free and overall survivals compared with women with fewer than five circulating tumor cells (see related news).
Ixabepilone Effective in Metastatic Breast Cancer
April 6, 2008
Researchers involved in a multi-center trial have reported that adding ixabepilone (Ixempra) to Xeloda(capecitabine) improves outcomes of patients with ER/PR/HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer (MBC) resistant to anthracyclines and taxanes. The details of this randomized study were presented at the 2007 meeting of the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium (SABCS) in December.
Blood Test to Detect Tumor Cells May Predict Outcome in Advanced Breast Cancer
April 4, 2008
Tumor cells in circulating blood may accurately indicate prognosis and tumor response to treatment for patients with metastatic breast cancer, whereas measures of tumors circulating in bone marrow do not. These findings were recently published in the Annals of Oncology.
For breast cancer patients with relapsed or recurrent disease, the presence of circulating tumor cells in the blood is predictive of poor survival. Circulating tumor cells can also be measured in the bone marrow, a method previously used to predict outcome of patients with early-stage breast cancer. The use of bone marrow fluids, however, has not been fully studied among women with more-advanced breast cancer. As well, using bone marrow fluid requires a more-invasive bone marrow aspiration to withdraw blood and fluid for examination.
Molecular Cause of Breast Cancer Metastasis Discovered
April 4, 2008
By Jeffrey Perkel, USNews
Signaling events in tumor pave the way for lung invasion, a new study shows. Certain cancers tend to spread to specific tissues, and now researchers have gained a molecular handle on how that happens.
Working with breast tumors, Joan Massague, chairman of the Cancer Biology and Genetics Program at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and his colleagues discovered a signaling “relay” that enables the cancer to molecularly “soften” its target tissue — the lung in this case — allowing circulating breast cancer cells to pass through capillary walls and penetrate the lung.