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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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World’s first method for continuous purification of valuable antibodies

Without antibodies we would be at the mercy of pathogens or cancer cells. Therapeutic antibodies are used as passive vaccines, for cancer therapy or for controlling autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis. According to “bccresearch.com” the global market for antibody drugs was worth nearly 70 billion USD in 2014 and should rise to 122 billion USD until 2019. Two thirds of those molecules are produced biotechnologically using Chinese hamster ovary cells (CHO)…

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Reaching ’80 percent by 2018′ would prevent more than 20,000 colorectal cancer deaths per year

Colorectal cancer (commonly called colon cancer) is the third leading cause of cancer death in both men and women in the United States, and the second leading cause for both sexes combined. An estimated 132,700 new cases and 49,700 deaths are expected in 2015 in the U.S. Data from the past decade show that both incidence and mortality from colon cancer are decreasing at rate of about 3% per year, largely due to the increased use of screening. Still, fewer than six in ten U.S. …

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Gene that pushes normal pancreas cells to change shape identified

Their findings, reported in Nature Communications, suggest that inhibiting the gene, protein kinase D1 (PKD1), and its protein could halt progression and spread of this form of pancreatic cancer, and possibly even reverse the transformation. “As soon as pancreatic cancer develops, it begins to spread, and PKD1 is key to both processes. Given this finding, we are busy developing a PKD1 inhibitor that we can test further,” says the study’s co-lead investigator, Peter Storz, Ph.D., a cancer researcher at Mayo Clinic…

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Protein identified as possible universal therapeutic target for many infections, including Ebola

By using a drug combination of the clinically tested OSU-03012 (AR-12) and FDA approved Phosphodiesterase 5 Inhibitors (Viagra, Cialis) to target GRP78 and related proteins, researchers prevented the replication of a variety of major viruses in infected cells, made antibiotic-resistant bacteria vulnerable to common antibiotics and found evidence that brain cancer stem cells were killed. Data were obtained in multiple brain cancer stem cell types, and using Influenza, Mumps, Measles, Rubella, RSV, CMV, Adenovirus, Coxsakie virus, Chikungunya, Ebola, Hepatitis, E. coli, MRSA, MRSE and N. …

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Researchers map paths to cancer drug resistance

By mapping the specific steps that cells of melanoma, breast cancer and a blood cancer called myelofibrosis use to become resistant to drugs, the researchers now have much better targets for blocking those pathways and keeping current therapies effective. The findings are published in two papers Dec. 23, 2014, in the journal Science Signaling. “Clinical resistance to anticancer therapies is a major problem,” said lead author Kris Wood, Ph.D., assistant professor of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology at Duke…

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Test predicts response to treatment for complication of leukemia stem cell treatment

Patients with fatal blood cancers like leukemia often require allogenic stem cell SCT to survive. Donor stem cells are transplanted to a recipient, but not without the risk of developing GVHD, a life-threatening complication and major cause of death after SCT. The disease, which can be mild to severe, occurs when the transplanted donor cells (known as the graft) attack the patient (referred to as the host). …

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Tailor-made cancer treatments? New cell culture technique paves the way

The new technique is more than three times as effective as previous methods. Researchers say it’s a major step forward in the study of circulating tumor cells, which are shed from tumors and circulate through the blood of cancer patients. They’re believed to cause metastasis, the spread of cancer through the body that’s responsible for nearly 90 percent of cancer-related deaths. The cells also hold valuable genetic information that could lead doctors to more informed treatment decisions and even tailor-made therapies for individual patients…

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Using power of computers to harness human genome may provide clues into Ebola virus

In an article titled “Ebola-Associated Genes in the Human Genome: Implications for Novel Targets,” published in the current MedCrave Online Journal of Proteomics and Bioinformatics, Narayanan describes how key genes that are present in our cells could be used to develop drugs for this disease. “Bioinformatics is a powerful tool to help us understand biological data,” said Narayanan whose research has focused in this field for more than a decade. “We are mining the human genome for Ebola virus association to develop an understanding of the human proteins involved in this disease for subsequent research and development, and to potentially create a pipeline of targets that we can test and evaluate.” Ebola virus disease is a major healthcare challenge facing the globe today and if left unchecked could become a pandemic. A limited knowledgebase exists about the Ebola virus and companies are hastening to develop vaccines and other forms to treat and cure the virus…

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Studies target androgen in breast cancer — ScienceDaily

“We’re on the cusp of a major revolution in the way we treat breast cancer. We’ve known for years that prostate cancer is driven by androgens and now it’s increasingly clear that androgens and androgen receptors can influence many breast cancers as well. AR is actually even more prevalent in breast cancer than estrogen or progesterone receptors. Targeting androgen receptors in breast cancer gives us an new way to attack the disease,” says Jennifer Richer, PhD, investigator at the CU Cancer Center and head of the Richer Laboratory that produced the results…

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