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Breakthrough finds molecules that block previously ‘undruggable’ protein tied to cancer

The findings, which could lead to a new class of cancer drugs, appear in the current issue of ACS Chemical Biology. “These are the first reported small-molecule HuR inhibitors that competitively disrupt HuR-RNA binding and release the RNA, thus blocking HuR function as a tumor-promoting protein,” said Liang Xu, associate professor of molecular biosciences and corresponding author of the paper. The results hold promise for treating a broad array of cancers in people. The researcher said HuR has been detected at high levels in almost every type of cancer tested, including cancers of the colon, prostate, breast, brain, ovaries, pancreas and lung…

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Research aims to reduce health care disparities

Gwendolyn P. Quinn, Ph.D., scientific director of the Survey Methods Core Facility at Moffitt, identified physicians largely operate under a, “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that prohibits open and honest dialogue between doctor and patient about cancer risk. The study highlights that LGBTQI populations face barriers to health insurance such as when partnerships and marriages are not legally recognized; concerns about disclosure in a health care setting, discrimination, misconceptions, legal and financial barriers and the disenfranchised stress and distress of caregiving same-sex partners. …

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Geography matters: Imaging overuse seen for breast, prostate cancer in certain regions across the U.S.

Researchers from NYU Langone Medical Center and its Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center, in a new retrospective study publishing online March 12th in JAMA Oncology, conclude that patients with low-risk prostate or breast cancer were more or less likely to receive inappropriate imaging during treatment, depending on the region of the country in which they received medical care. They examined medical records from 2004-2007 of 9,219 men with low-risk prostate cancer and 30,398 women with low-risk breast cancer, across 84 separate hospital referral regions (HRRs). …

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Ethnic minorities less aware of cancer symptoms, more likely to identify barriers to seeking medical help

Researchers looked at nearly 50,000 responses to the Cancer Research UK Cancer Awareness Measure from people across England. They found that ethnic minority groups were consistently less aware of cancer symptoms. People with a black ethnic background were half as likely as white people to recognise that unexplained bleeding could be a symptom of cancer; while South Asians were a quarter as likely as white people to recognise that an unexplained lump or swelling could be a cancer symptom…

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62% of colorectal cancer patients report financial burden from treatment, study finds

The burden was greatest among patients who received chemotherapy and among younger patients who worked in low-paying jobs. The study surveyed 956 patients who had been treated for stage 3 colorectal cancer. Among this group, chemotherapy is known to increase survival by up to 20 percent and is routinely recommended following surgery. …

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New treatment designed to save more eyes from cancer

Treatments for retinoblastoma have progressed dramatically in recent years, one being a procedure called ophthalmic artery infusion chemotherapy. A tiny catheter is inserted into an artery that provides blood flow (and chemotherapy) directly to the eye and tumor. Originally introduced in the late 1980s, direct ophthalmic artery infusion significantly increases treatment effectiveness while reducing side effects. Unfortunately, many children with retinoblastoma are not good candidates for conventional ophthalmic artery infusion — in particular younger, smaller patients with advanced disease, according to Todd Abruzzo, MD, director of Interventional Neuroradiology at Cincinnati Children’s. …

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Study identifies when and how much various prostate cancer treatments will impact urinary and sexual functioning — ScienceDaily

Looking over data gathered from more than 17,000 surveys completed by men diagnosed with prostate cancer, Fox Chase researchers tracked when patients’ urinary and sexual symptoms changed following each type of treatment, and by how much. “The ultimate goal,” says study author Matthew Johnson, MD, Resident Physician in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Fox Chase, “is to develop a predictive tool that lets patients decide which treatment is right for them based on the symptoms they have beforehand, and their tolerance for any change — even temporary — in those symptoms.” After a diagnosis of prostate cancer, men have multiple treatment options, including surgery to remove the prostate and several types of radiation therapy…

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Study identifies when and how much various prostate cancer treatments will impact urinary and sexual functioning

Looking over data gathered from more than 17,000 surveys completed by men diagnosed with prostate cancer, Fox Chase researchers tracked when patients’ urinary and sexual symptoms changed following each type of treatment, and by how much. “The ultimate goal,” says study author Matthew Johnson, MD, Resident Physician in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Fox Chase, “is to develop a predictive tool that lets patients decide which treatment is right for them based on the symptoms they have beforehand, and their tolerance for any change — even temporary — in those symptoms.” After a diagnosis of prostate cancer, men have multiple treatment options, including surgery to remove the prostate and several types of radiation therapy. They can receive external beam radiation directed towards their prostate, known as intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT), or undergo a procedure that implants radioactive seeds in their prostate called low dose rate brachytherapy (LDR). …

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When it comes to raising vitamin D levels, anesthesiologists advise: Don’t be wimpy!

There’s already enough evidence to justify increasing vitamin D levels to improve health, according to the opinion piece by Drs Michael F. Roizen of the Cleveland Clinic and Jeffrey D. Roizen of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. Meanwhile, they propose a randomized trial to conclusively determine whether vitamin D can reduce complication rates after surgery…

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