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New approach to treat drug-resistant HER2–positive breast cancer

The discovery, published in the journal CELL Reports, provides the experimental evidence for the potential development of a novel combination therapy for HER2-positive breast cancer. The combination includes the FDA approved drug lapatinib and a new experimental drug called a BET bromodomain inhibitor, which works by disrupting the expression of specific genes…

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Breakthrough in understanding how cancer cells metastasize

The study examined the function of a protein called DENND2B. During childhood development, DENND2B likely plays a role in the normal migration of cells. In adults, cell migration is greatly reduced, but in the case of cancer, there is unwanted cell migration, contributing to one of the most puzzling aspects of cancer cells — metastasis to new locations. “DENND2B activates another protein in the cell called Rab13, which is an enzyme that promotes cell migration,” says Dr. …

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Cancer researchers may inspire new area of research in cellular biology

A research collaboration between Griffith and the Malaghan Institute in Wellington, New Zealand has made the discovery that mitochondria are capable of passing through the healthy membrane of a host cell into defective tumour cells, possibly kicking off the rapid proliferation of tumour cells which is the hallmark of cancer. Until now each cell was believed to be a unique entity, with mitochondria and mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) bound within the cell membrane. …

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Narrow subset of cells is responsible for metastasis in multiple myeloma, study finds

The study suggests that attacking those subsets with targeted drugs may degrade the disease’s ability to spread throughout the bone marrow of affected patients, the authors say. The discovery was made by developing a mouse model of the disease that enabled researchers to track which of 15 genetic groups — or subclones — of myeloma cells spread beyond their initial site in the animals’ hind legs. By labeling the different subgroups with fluorescent dyes, researchers determined that just one of the subclones was responsible for the disease metastasis. They then compared the pattern of gene abnormalities in the initial myeloma tissue and the metastatic tumors. …

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Possibilities for personalized vaccines — ScienceDaily

“One of the biggest hurdles in cancer immunotherapy is the discovery of appropriate cancer targets that can be recognised by T-cells,” said Singh, who is scientific coordinator of the EU-funded GAPVAC phase I trial which is testing personalised vaccines in glioblastoma, the most common and aggressive brain cancer. “In the GAPVAC trial we will treat glioblastoma patients with vaccines that are ideal for each patient because they contain personalised antigens.”1 For all patients in the GAPVAC study, researchers will identify genes expressed in the tumour, peptides presented on the human leukocyte antigen (HLA) receptor (i.e…

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Bone drug should be seen in a new light for its anti-cancer properties — ScienceDaily

Several clinical trials – where women with breast cancer were given these drugs (bisphosphonates) alongside normal treatment for early-stage disease – showed that they can confer a ‘survival advantage’ and inhibit cancer spread in some women, although until now no-one has understood why. A new study by Professor Mike Rogers, Dr Tri Phan and Dr Simon Junankar from Sydney’s Garvan Institute of Medical Research has used sophisticated imaging technologies to reveal that bisphosphonates attach to tiny calcifications in tumours in mice. These calcium-drug complexes are then devoured by ‘macrophages’, immune cells that the cancer hijacks early in its development to conceal its existence. The study, which includes remarkable movies of the entire process described above, is published in the journal Cancer Discovery, now online…

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Clock gene dysregulation may explain overactive bladder — ScienceDaily

“We hope our study will stimulate further progress in understanding circadian control of body physiology and aging-related dysfunction and ultimately lead to new strategies of treatment by targeting the circadian regulatory process, including non-drug treatment approaches,” said Changhao Wu, M.D., Ph.D., a researcher involved in the work from the Department of Biochemistry and Physiology at the University of Surrey in the United Kingdom. To make this discovery, scientists used genetically modified mice in which a special wavelength of light was emitted when the clock proteins were produced in isolated bladder tissue. This light reported real-time clock expression and acted directly as a measure of peripheral clock expression…

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Blood test may help diagnose pancreatic cancer

In research published today in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, Murray Korc, M.D., the Myles Brand Professor of Cancer Research at the Indiana University School of Medicine and a researcher at the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center, and colleagues found that several microRNAs — small RNA molecules — circulate at high levels in the blood of pancreatic cancer patients. “This is a new finding that extends previous knowledge in this field,” Dr. Korc said. …

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