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November 5, 2006, 8:57 PM CT

IMRT versus 3D CRT for prostate cancer

IMRT versus 3D CRT for prostate cancer
New research findings show men have fewer long-term gastrointestinal side effects with intensity-modulated radiation treatment (IMRT) than with three-dimensional conformal radiation treatment (3D CRT) for prostate cancer therapy, despite the higher doses of radiation used in the IMRT group. These and other data, including long-term genitourinary side effects, were presented today at the 48th Annual Meeting of the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology in Philadelphia.

Long-term data comparing 3D CRT for prostate cancer versus the use of IMRT is only now beginning to mature. Few other academic therapy centers have as much experience with 3D CRT and IMRT as Fox Chase.

Both techniques allow precise targeting of the cancer with multiple X-ray beams, but IMRT allows physicians to modulate the radiation dose intensity with far smaller radiation beams. Thus, doses of radiation to the bladder and rectum can be limited. Reducing radiation exposure to healthy normal tissue and other vital organs helps prevent once common side effects such as urinary frequency and diarrhea.

In the study presented today, scientists analyzed data collected prospectively from 1,417 patients treated at Fox Chase. Of these, 928 men were treated with 3D CRT (median follow-up of 63.3 months) and 489 men with IMRT (median follow-up of 29.9 months). The IMRT patients received higher doses of radiation.........

Posted by: Mark      Permalink         Source


November 5, 2006, 8:39 PM CT

Six Months Of Hormone Therapy Enough For Prostate Cancer

Six Months Of Hormone Therapy Enough For Prostate Cancer
Patients with prostate cancer treated with either radiation or surgery who use hormone treatment for longer than six months do not survive any longer than patients who use the therapy for a shorter amount of time, as per a research studypresented November 5, 2006, at the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology's 48th Annual Meeting in Philadelphia.

"A number of patients with high risk prostate cancer are treated with two or more years of hormone treatment based on studies performed over a decade ago," said Cliff Robinson, M.D., lead author of the study and a radiation oncologist at Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. "Our study's findings suggest that treating current patients with shorter-term hormone treatment may not only be equally effective, but also improve their quality of life, due to a lesser degree of therapy side effects."

The authors also observed that patients receiving longer than six months of hormone treatment were twice as likely to die as patients who use the therapy for a shorter amount of time. "The reasons why patients receiving longer term hormone treatment may do worse are unclear," said Dr. Robinson, who also cautions, "Many factors could complicate the issue, and this area needs further investigation before any conclusions can be drawn".........

Posted by: Mark      Permalink         Source


November 5, 2006, 8:34 PM CT

Why Men With Prostate Cancer Avoid Radiation?

Why Men With Prostate Cancer Avoid Radiation?
Negative perceptions about radiation treatment can strongly influence a prostate cancer patient's choice to avoid external beam radiation treatment, even though studies have proven the therapy to be as safe and effective as other therapys for the disease, including surgery, as per a research studypresented November 5, 2006, at the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology's 48th Annual Meeting in Philadelphia.

"The study shows that patients base their therapy choice not only on technical information, but also on cultural and personal prejudices," said Riccardo Valdagni, M.D., an author of the study and head of the Prostate Programme at the Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori in Milan, Italy. "It's important for patients to express their fears about radiation therapy to their doctors and for doctors to consider these worries and address any misconceptions about this treatment so that patients can make the best, most informed decision about their therapy".

Men with prostate cancer often choose between external beam radiation treatment, radiation seed implants and surgery to treat their cancer. During external beam radiation, a beam of radiation, or X-ray, is directed through the skin to the cancer and the immediate surrounding area to kill the cancer. To minimize side effects, radiation is given five days a week for several weeks. A number of men with prostate cancer choose external beam radiation over other therapys because it is non-invasive, has a short recovery period and often helps men preserve their sexual and urinary function.........

Posted by: Mark      Permalink         Source


November 3, 2006, 4:36 AM CT

Low Folate Diets Increase Risk Of Colorectal Cancer

Low Folate Diets Increase Risk Of Colorectal Cancer Food items that contain folate
A new study by researchers at the MUHC has revealed that a diet low in folate may increase the risk of developing colorectal cancer. Reported in the scientific journal Cancer Research today, the study not only illustrates a way to prevent the disease but also provides further insight into the mechanisms of the disease, which could lead to novel therapies. Using animal models, the MUHC study is the first to demonstrate directly that diets low in folate cause colorectal cancer, and follows on the heels of earlier research by the same team that revealed how high folate diets can protect against heart disease.

"This research, which is consistent with prior epidemiological studies in humans, demonstrates a clear link between low dietary folate and the initiation of colorectal cancer in animal models," says Dr. Rima Rozen, Scientific Director of the Montreal Children's Hospital, Deputy Scientific Director of the MUHC, and lead investigator in the study. "None of the mice fed a control diet developed tumours whereas 1 in 4 mice on the folate-deficient diet developed at least one tumour".

Possible mechanisms of the disease were also investigated using molecular biological techniques. "The study shows that a low level of dietary folate may cause an increase in DNA damage, which plays a role in the development of tumours," noted Dr. Rozen. The study also reveals that folate deficiency causes genes which commonly respond to DNA damage to behave abnormally, also contributing to the development of tumours. The results suggest that a diet containing sufficient folate may reduce the risk of developing colorectal cancer.........

Posted by: Sue      Permalink         Source


November 2, 2006, 5:29 PM CT

Smoking Related Cancers

Smoking Related Cancers
There are currently about fifty million smokers in the U.S. and there are another fifty million ex-smokers. Cigarette smoking has been linked to several human malignancies. Some of these links like the relationship between smoking and lung cancer are well established. In some other cases the relationship between smoking and cancer is not very well established. However several studies have clearly shown the malignant potential of chemical substances in cigarette smoke. This article is an attempt to summarize some of the known links between cigarette smoking and caner.

Lung cancer

Lung cancer has a strong association with smoking. On average, smokers increase their risk of lung cancer between 5 and 10-fold compared to never smokers. Even though lung cancer can occur in non-smokers, it should be appreciated that more than 90 percent of all lung cancer patients are current or past smokers. Some sub types of lung cancer like small cell lung cancer is more strongly associated with smoking than others. There is plenty of research evidence in the literature linking lung cancer to smoking. A recent study published in the British Journal Of Medicine (Ref: BMJ 1997) concluded that the accumulated evidence support the fact secondhand exposure to cigarette smoke could lead to lung cancer. ........

Posted by: Agarwaal MD      Permalink


November 2, 2006, 5:17 AM CT

Breakthrough In Eye Cancer Treatment

Breakthrough In Eye Cancer Treatment
Researchers at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital have demonstrated in a mouse model a new, locally applied therapy for the eye cancer retinoblastoma that not only greatly reduces the size of the tumor, but does so without causing the side effects common with standard chemotherapy. The therapy also appears to be suitable for certain forms of breast, lung, prostate and colon cancer, and is simple enough for widespread use even in countries with limited resources.

A report on this work appears in the Nov. 2 issue of the journal Nature.

Retinoblastoma occurs in about 5,000 young children worldwide each year, arising from the immature retina, which is the part of the eye responsible for detecting light and color. The cancer is fatal if left untreated.

The new therapy holds promise for a simpler, more effective and less-toxic therapy for retinoblastoma that would eliminate the need for the current, complex treatment, as per senior author Michael Dyer, Ph.D., a Pew Scholar and associate member of the St. Jude Department of Developmental Neurobiology. The therapy is based on a discovery by Dyer's laboratory that overturned a widely held belief about the process of apoptosis (cell suicide) in retinoblastoma. Apoptosis is the way the body rids itself of abnormal cells that might become malignant or cause other problems.........

Posted by: Mike      Permalink         Source


November 1, 2006, 5:07 AM CT

Stress Hormones May Speed Up Cancer Growth

Stress Hormones May Speed Up Cancer Growth
New research here suggests that hormones produced during periods of stress may increase the growth rate of a especially nasty kind of cancer.

The study showed that an increase in norepinephrine, a stress hormone, can stimulate tumor cells to produce two compounds. These compounds can break down the tissue around the tumor cells and allow the cells to more easily move into the bloodstream. From there, they can travel to another location in the body to form additional tumors, a process called metastasis.

The research also suggests the same hormone can also stimulate the tumor cells to release another compound that can aid in the growth of new blood vessels that feed cancer cells, hastening the growth and spread of the disease. The work was published in the latest issue of the journal Cancer Research.

"This opens up an entirely new way of looking at stress and cancer that's different from current interpretations," explained Ronald Glaser, a professor of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics, and director of the Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research at Ohio State University.

Glaser and Eric Yang, a research scientist in the same institute, focused on the role of these three compounds. Two of them, both matrix metalloproteinases -- MMP-2 and MMP-9 -- play a role in breaking down the scaffolding that cells attach to in order to maintain their shape. The third compound, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF), is important in the growth of new blood vessels into tumor cells.........

Posted by: Janet      Permalink         Source


November 1, 2006, 4:51 AM CT

HPV Test Is A Better Long-term Predictor

HPV Test Is A Better Long-term Predictor HPV Virus
The best initial cervical cancer screening tool for younger women is still the traditional Pap smear. However, a large Danish study has observed that for older women (age 40 and older), a test for human papillomavirus (HPV) is a much more effective way to screen for potential cancer.

The reason, report scientists in the November 1 issue of Cancer Research, is that HPV infection is both frequent and transient in younger women, and they would often test positive for HPV when no actual risk of cervical cancer existed. But, in older women, HPV infection is rarer and more persistent, putting a woman at substantial risk for the disease before changes in cervical cells, detected by Pap smears, are obvious.

"We have documented that a single HPV test can actually predict older women at risk for cervical cancer better than a single Pap smear can," said the study's senior author, Susanne Krüger Kjaer, M.D., professor and head of the Department of Virus, Hormones and Cancer at the Danish Cancer Society.

The scientists specifically observed that the absolute risk of developing cervical cancer in an older woman who tests positive for HPV is greater than 20 percent within a 10-year period. They also note that most women who test positive for HPV also test negative on a Pap smear given at the same time.........

Posted by: Emily      Permalink         Source


November 1, 2006, 4:35 AM CT

Estrogen Receptor Metastatic Breast Cancer Link

Estrogen Receptor Metastatic Breast Cancer Link
Breast cancer awareness month may have passed, but scientists remain focused on the disease with a new study showing that a unique estrogen receptor found in breast cancer tumors is a predictor of tumor size and metastases. The study, led by scientists at Rhode Island Hospital and Brown Medical School, is reported in the November 1 issue of Clinical Cancer Research.

"We observed that a novel estrogen receptor, termed GPR30, is associated with breast tumor progression and increased tumor size,"says lead author Edward J. Filardo, PhD, research associate at Rhode Island Hospital and assistant professor at Brown Medical School. "Furthermore, the results support previous research suggesting that GPR30 acts independently from the two known estrogen receptors, ERƒÑ and ERƒÒ."

Estrogen receptors act like ears on a breast cancer cell ¡V estrogen attaches to the receptor and transmits signals that tells the cell to grow and multiply. Physicians test for receptors to help determine the most appropriate therapy for patients with breast cancer. Typically, the more estrogen receptors present, the more likely the patient will respond to hormone treatment, such as tamoxifen.

However, approximately one in four patients that test positive for estrogen receptors, do not respond to hormone treatment prompting researchers to propose that there may be additional types of estrogen receptors that play a role tumor growth. Filardo and co-author Jeffrey Quinn, PhD, first identified GPR30 as a potential alternate estrogen receptor capable of triggering breast cancer cell growth in 2000.........

Posted by: Janet      Permalink         Source


October 31, 2006, 4:07 AM CT

Microwaving Your French Fries Before You Fry Them

Microwaving Your French Fries Before You Fry Them
Microwaving your French fries before you fry them reduces the levels of a cancer-causing substance, reveals findings published recently in the SCI's Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.

The discovery of acrylamide - a possible carcinogenic in humans - has led to much research being done to investigate the benefits of alternative cooking methods. Acrylamide forms during processes such as frying, baking and roasting where high-temperature and low-moisture conditions exist.

Eventhough numerous studies have been conducted to explore the possibilities of reducing acrylamide levels in French fries, a team of scientists from Turkey has shown that by reducing the frying time and hence the acrylamide formation by microwave pre-cooking of potato strips previous to frying.

Publishing their work in the Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture, the researches showed that microwave application previous to frying resulted in a marked reduction of the acrylamide level in the surface region. When the potato strips were subjected to frying after a microwave pre-cooking step, acrylamide content in the whole potato strip was reduced by 36%, 41% and 60% for frying at 150, 170 and 190oC respectively.

"Microwaving French fries before cooking takes little time and in fact, microwave pre-cooked samples fried to the same degree of cooking appeared to have a more acceptable colour, probably due to the more gentle heat therapy they experienced during frying," says lead author Koray Palazoglu, of the University of Mersin, Turkey.........

Posted by: Janet      Permalink         Source



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Cancer
Cancer is a very common disease, approximately one out of every two American men and one out of every three American women will have some type of cancer at some point during the course of their life. Cancer is more common in the elderly and 77 percent of cancers occur in people above age 55 or older. Cancer is also common in children. Cancer incidence is said to have two peaks once during early childhood and then during late years in life. No age period is completely exempted from development of cancers. Some cancers occur predominantly in the elderly, other types occur in children, Cancer occurs in all ethnic races, however the cancer rates and rates of specific cancer types may vary from group to group. Late stages of cancer may be incurable in most cases, but with the advancement of medicine, more and more cancers are becoming curable.

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