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Review highlights potential of cancer immunotherapy plus targeted therapy

“To support this goal and accelerate these efforts, changes in directions of research support and funding may be required,” co-authors Padmanee Sharma, M.D., Ph.D., professor of Genitourinary Medical Oncology and Immunology, and Jim Allison, Ph.D., chair of Immunology, said in the review. The review, titled “Immune Checkpoint Targeting in Cancer Therapy: Toward Combination Strategies with Curative Potential,” covers the strengths and weaknesses of the two forms of therapy and notes how their combination could be particularly potent. …

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Advocate uses genetic history to increase knowledge of hereditary cancer risk

The 33-year-old mother who has tested positive for the BRCA2 cancer gene is one of 12 people in her family over three generations linked to the gene or diagnosed with cancer. Now Koszegi is using her family’s genetic history to contribute to cancer research, prevention and treatment — with the aim of improving the quality of life for those facing hereditary risk…

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Natural extract shows promise for preventing breast cancer, study suggests

“Doctors, patients and researchers are looking for alternative treatments for triple negative breast cancer, and people are always looking for ways to prevent cancer,” said Patrick Martin, Ph.D., associate professor at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University and leader of the study. “How awesome would it be to be able to say: Here, take a daily vitamin tablet from the rose plant to possibly help prevent or treat cancer? It’s a natural product that we found to be effective, with no known side effects.” Triple negative breast cancer draws its name from the fact that the cancer cells in these tumors lack the three growth factor receptors that are normally targeted during breast cancer treatment. …

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Precision medicine for adrenal cancer, study suggests

In a randomized phase 3 trial, adrenal cancer patients receiving the investigational drug linsitinib fared no better than patients receiving a placebo. But the researchers noticed a small subset of patients who had significant response and remained on the drug for an extended time. “While it was only a small subset of patients who responded to linsitinib, this remains very promising in the era of precision medicine,” says co-principle investigator Gary D. …

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Anderson algorithm increases surgical success with advanced ovarian cancer

The researchers describe the Anderson Algorithm in a perspective piece outlining a personalized surgical approach to ovarian cancer published online at Nature Reviews Clinical Oncology. “Our algorithm allows us to be much smarter about whom we operate on up front, providing a more individualized approach to surgery that’s led to better results for our patients,” said Anil Sood, M.D., professor of Gynecologic Oncology and Reproductive Medicine and senior author of the paper. The multi-step process was developed through MD Anderson’s Moon Shots Program, an ambitious effort launched in 2012 to dramatically reduce cancer deaths. Sood is co-leader of the Breast and Ovarian Cancer Moon Shot…

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Plant extract fights brain tumor

Scientists around G�nter Stalla, endocrinologist at the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich, now discovered in cell cultures, animal models and human tumour tissue that a harmless plant extract can be applied to treat Cushing Disease. “Silibinin is the major active constituent of milk thistle seeds. It has an outstanding safety profile in humans and is already used for the treatment of liver disease and poisoning,” explains Marcelo Paez-Pereda, leading scientist of the current study published in the scientific journal Nature Medicine. After silibinin treatment, tumour cells resumed normal ACTH production, tumour growth slowed down and symptoms of Cushing Disease disappeared in mice…

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