Personalized melanoma vaccines marshal powerful immune response

The tailor-made vaccines, given to three patients with advanced melanoma, appeared to increase the number and diversity of cancer-fighting T cells responding to the tumors. The finding is a boost to cancer immunotherapy, a treatment strategy that unleashes the immune system to seek out and destroy cancer. The research is reported April 2 in Science… Read More »

Strong grasp of immune response dynamics will enhance checkpoint blockade

“Identifying in advance who will benefit from treatment and developing combination therapies to improve and expand on current results will require us to decipher the dynamics of human immune response to tumors and their surrounding microenvironment,” said co-author Padmanee Sharma, M.D., Ph.D., professor of Genitourinary Medical Oncology and Immunology at The University of Texas MD… Read More »

Small RNA plays big role suppressing cancer

Researchers at UC Davis have unraveled some of these relationships, identifying several interactions that directly impact liver and colon cancer. The work provides new insights into how miR-22 operates and could potentially lead to new cancer therapies. The study was published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry. “There are quite a few molecules present in… Read More »

Herpesvirus activates RIG-I receptor to evade body’s immune system

Led by Pinghui Feng, Ph.D., associate professor of molecular microbiology and immunology at the Keck School of Medicine of USC, the team found that herpesvirus proteins activate retinoic acid-induced gene I (RIG-I) by removal of an amino group from the glutamine and asparagine amino acids through a process called deamidation. RIG-I is a cellular receptor… Read More »

Cancer genes turned off in deadly brain cancer

While standard chemotherapy drugs damage DNA to stop cancer cells from reproducing, the new method stops the source that creates those cancer cells: genes that are overexpressing certain proteins. “Our study identified miR-182 as a glioblastoma tumor suppressor that reduces the expression of several oncogenes that promote cancer development,” said senior author of the study… Read More »

Possible progress against Parkinson’s and good news for stem cell therapies

Parkinson’s, which affect as many 10 million people in the world, is caused by a depletion of dopamine-producing neurons in the brain. Current treatments include medications and electrical implants in the brain which causes severe adverse effects over time and fail to prevent disease progression. Several studies have indicated that the transplantation of embryonic stem… Read More »

Most women with early-stage breast cancer avoid extensive lymph node removal

Until now, it was unclear to what extent surgeons were following the recommendations of a landmark clinical trial published more than four years ago, known as the American College of Surgeons Oncology Group Z0011, or ACOSOG Z-11, trial. Those researchers reported that most early-stage breast cancer patients with tumor in their sentinel lymph node (the first draining node) who undergo lumpectomy do not benefit from surgical removal of the remaining lymph nodes in the underarm area, called completion axillary lymph node dissection (ALND). That study found no difference in cancer recurrence1 and five-year survival2 between patients who underwent ALND and those who did not but were monitored for recurrences…

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. …