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Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
Nature Communications
Cancer risk linked to DNA 'wormholes'
Single-letter genetic variations within parts of the genome once dismissed as 'junk DNA' can increase cancer risk through wormhole-like effects on far-off genes, new research shows. Researchers found that DNA sequences within 'gene deserts' -- so called because they are completely devoid of genes -- can regulate gene activity elsewhere by forming DNA loops across relatively large distances.
European Union, Cancer Research UK, Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, The Institute of Cancer Research

Contact: Claire Hastings
Institute of Cancer Research

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
Sunlight continues to damage skin in the dark
Much of the damage that ultraviolet radiation does to skin occurs hours after sun exposure, a team of Yale-led researchers concluded in a study that was published online Feb. 19 by the journal Science.
US Department of Defense, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Ziba Kashef
Yale University

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
Evolution may hold the key to more designer cancer drugs like Gleevec
Dorothee Kern, a professor of biochemistry and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, unraveled the journey of two closely related cancer-causing proteins -- one susceptible to the drug Gleevec and one not -- over one billion years of evolution. She and her team pinpointed the exact evolutionary shifts that caused Gleevec to bind well with one and poorly with the other. This new approach may have a major impact on the development of rational drugs to fight cancer.
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Office of Basic Energy Sciences, Catalysis Science Program, US Department of Energy, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Leah Burrows
Brandeis University

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
PLOS Genetics
Insect and mammal ovulation more alike than not?
The average American woman lives more than 80 years and ovulates for 35 of them, producing an egg approximately once a month. The typical fruit fly lives about 4 weeks as an adult and ovulates every 30 minutes. Despite the vast differences, researchers have found that during a key process in ovulation, the same gene may govern both. The results could bring insight to cancer metastasis, human fertility and ovarian disease.
UConn CLAS, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, UConn Holster Scholar and IDEA grant

Contact: Kim Krieger
University of Connecticut

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
JAMA Oncology
BWH study provides evidence for new approaches to prostate cancer
According to the results of a new study conducted at Brigham and Women's Hospital, there is evidence to also support AS as an initial approach for men with favorable intermediate-risk of PC (men with no evidence of the cancer spreading beyond the prostate, a Gleason score of 3+4 or less and PSA, prostate-specific antigen, under 20).

Contact: Elaine St. Peter
Brigham and Women's Hospital

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
Journal of Clinical Investigation
New test to predict the effectiveness of cancer vaccines
Many therapeutic cancer vaccines that are currently being developed are designed to direct the immune system against altered cancer-cell proteins. However, these vaccines can only be effective if the tumor cells present the altered protein to the immune system in a perfectly matching shape. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center and Heidelberg University Hospital have now described a test to predict whether this prerequisite for effective tumor vaccination is fulfilled.

Contact: Dr. Sibylle Kohlstädt
German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ)

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
New England Journal of Medicine
UW research shows sensor technology may help improve accuracy of clinical breast exams
Sensor technology has the potential to significantly improve the teaching of proper technique for clinical breast exams, according to a new study by researchers at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.
National Institutes of Health

Contact: Gian Galassi
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Public Release: 19-Feb-2015
Cell Reports
Breast cancer spread may be tied to cells that regulate blood flow
Tumors require blood to emerge and spread. That is why scientists at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center believe that targeting blood vessel cells known as pericytes may offer a potential new therapeutic approach when combined with vascular growth factors responsible for cell death.

Contact: Ron Gilmore
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
JAMA Dermatology
Unlikely that topical pimecrolimus associated with increased risk of cancer
The topical medicine pimecrolimus to treat eczema (atopic dermatitis or AD) in children appears unlikely to be associated with increased of risk of cancer based on how it was used in group of children followed for 10 years, according to an article published online by JAMA Dermatology.

Contact: Karen Kreeger
The JAMA Network Journals

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Deconstructing the dynamic genome
Two international teams of researchers led by Ludwig San Diego's Bing Ren have published in the current issue of Nature two papers that analyze in unprecedented detail the variability and regulation of gene expression across the entire human genome, and their correspondence with the physical structure of chromosomes.
Epigenome Road Map Project, Ludwig Cancer Research, California Institute of Regenerative Medicine

Contact: Rachel Steinhardt
Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Mulling the marijuana munchies: How the brain flips the hunger switch
The 'munchies,' or that uncontrollable urge to eat after using marijuana, appear to be driven by neurons in the brain that are normally involved in suppressing appetite, according to a new study by Yale School of Medicine researchers in the Feb. 18 issue of the journal Nature.
National Institutes of Health, American Diabetes Association, The Klarmann Family Foundation, Helmholtz Society Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Contact: Karen N. Peart
Yale University

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
MD Anderson president named as fellow of top cancer research group
Ron DePinho, M.D., president of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, will be inducted as a new fellow of the American Association for Cancer Research Academy.

Contact: Ron Gilmore
University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
New insights into 3-D genome organization and genetic variability
While genomics is the study of all of the genes in a cell or organism, epigenomics is the study of all the genomic add-ons and changes that influence gene expression but aren't encoded in the DNA sequence. A variety of new epigenomic information is now available in a collection of studies published Feb. 19 in Nature by the National Institutes of Health Roadmap Epigenomics Program.
NIH/Roadmap Epigenomics Program, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine, Ludwig Cancer Research

Contact: Heather Buschman
University of California - San Diego

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Science Translational Medicine
Development of personalized cellular therapy for brain cancer
Immune cells engineered to seek out and attack a type of deadly brain cancer were found to be both safe and effective at controlling tumor growth in mice that were treated with these modified cells. The results paved the way for a newly opened clinical trial for glioblastoma patients at Penn.
National Institutes of Health, NIH/National Cancer Institute, American Society of Clinical Oncology Conquer Cancer Foundation Young Investigator Award, Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research

Contact: Holly Auer
University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
New England Journal of Medicine
New HPV vaccine offers greater protection against cervical cancer than current vaccine
Scientists have developed a new HPV (human papilloma virus) vaccine which protects against nine types of the virus -- seven of which cause most cases of cervical cancer. The new vaccine offers significantly greater protection than the current vaccine, which protects against only two cancer causing types of HPV.

Contact: Charli Scouller
Queen Mary, University of London

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Researchers unravel health/disease map
Researchers affiliated with several organizations, including Simon Fraser University, have realized a major scientific achievement that will advance understanding of how the information in our cells is used and processed. The scientists are globally celebrating their publication of 20 manuscripts in Nature that describe their generation and analysis of reference epigenome maps. Epigenomes are chemical modifications of DNA and proteins. They cause our genome to stay healthy or develop diseases.
Canadian Institutes of Health Research, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Carol Thorbes
Simon Fraser University

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
New insight into a fragile protein linked to cancer and autism
In recent years, scientists have found a surprising a connection between some people with autism and certain cancer patients: They have mutations in the same gene, one that codes for a protein critical for normal cellular health. Now scientists have reported in the ACS journal Biochemistry that the defects reduce the activity and stability of the protein. Their findings could someday help lead to new treatments for both sets of patients.

Contact: Michael Bernstein
American Chemical Society

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Journal of Clinical Investigation
Possible strategy identified to combat major parasitic tropical disease
Research led by St. Jude Children's Research Hospital scientists has identified a potential target in the quest to develop a more effective treatment for leishmaniasis, a parasitic tropical disease that kills thousands and sickens more than 1 million people worldwide each year. The findings were published online in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.
National Institutes of Health, European Research Council, Fund for Scientific Research-Flanders, American Lebanese Syrian Associated Charities

Contact: Carrie Strehlau
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Predicting cancers' cell of origin
A study led by researchers from Brigham and Women's Hospital suggests a new way to trace cancer back to its cell type of origin. The study, which appears this week in Nature, provides new insights into the early events that shape a cancer, and could have important implications for the many cancer patients for whom the originating site of the cancer is unknown.
National Institutes of Health, Integra-Life Seventh Framework Program, EMBO Young Investigator Program

Contact: Haley Bridger
Brigham and Women's Hospital

Public Release: 18-Feb-2015
Journal of Nuclear Medicine
Research shows value of additional PET/CT scans in follow-up of lung cancer patients
New research from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine reveals a high value of scans which could lead to future change of reimbursement policies for follow-up positron emission tomography/computed tomography studies in lung cancer. The study, featured in the February 2015 issue of the Journal of Nuclear Medicine, establishes the value of fourth and subsequent follow-up PET/CT scans in clinical assessment and management change in patients with the disease.

Contact: Kimberly Brown
Society of Nuclear Medicine

Public Release: 17-Feb-2015
International Journal of Molecular Sciences
A new weapon in the fight against cancer
New research from Concordia University confirms that a tool for keeping the most common forms of cancer at bay could be in your gut.

Contact: Clea Desjardins
514-848-2424 x5068
Concordia University

Public Release: 17-Feb-2015
Review of Scientific Instruments
Potential new breathalyzer for lung cancer screening
Chinese researchers have developed a simple, rapid device for detecting volatile organic compounds on the breath, demonstrating potential for early cancer detection.

Contact: Jason Socrates Bardi
American Institute of Physics

Public Release: 17-Feb-2015
Science: Chromosome 'bumper repair' gene predicts cancer patient outcomes
A University of Colorado Cancer Center study published in the journal Science shows that levels of mRNA for the gene TERT predict patient outcomes in bladder cancer. Results may help doctors and researchers mark especially aggressive bladder cancers, allowing them to recommend appropriate treatments and improve patient outcomes.
NIH/National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health

Contact: Garth Sundem
University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus

Public Release: 17-Feb-2015
Cancer treatments could evolve from research showing that acetate supplements speed up cancer growth
UT Southwestern Medical Center researchers seeking novel ways to combat cancer found that giving acetate, a major compound produced in the gut by host bacteria, to mice sped up the growth and metastasis of tumors.

Contact: Russell Rian
UT Southwestern Medical Center

Public Release: 17-Feb-2015
MAGE genes provide insight into optimizing chemotherapy, UT Southwestern cancer researchers find
UT Southwestern Medical Center scientists have identified a new biomarker that could help identify patients who are more likely to respond to certain chemotherapies.

Contact: Russell Rian
UT Southwestern Medical Center

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