AACR, Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research / 18.04.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ajit Johnson Nirmal PhD Instructor of Medicine, DFCI, HMS Laboratory of systems pharmacology Harvard Medical School MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  Response: Like many other types of cancers, melanoma arises from gene mutations within cells that impact cell growth and division. These abnormal cells should be rapidly eliminated by our immune system, however, the failure to do so leads to the development of cancer. Hence researchers have long been interested to study the tumor environment that nurtures and sustains these dangerous cells. In the past, researchers have used single-cell technologies to delineate the cell types and cell states that make up the tumor microenvironment. However, the spatial relationships between these cell types and how they organize themselves such as to provide a favorable environment for the tumor to develop remains unknown. In the last couple of years, researchers have developed a new suite of new technologies called spatial omics which includes CYCIF a method that was developed at Sorger lab. Using this method, we can not only measure the molecular information of cells at a single cell level but also their spatial context. This allows us to build a google map like view of the skin with melanoma and study what is exactly happening that allows the tumors to develop. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Clots - Coagulation / 18.04.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. med. univ. Cornelia Englisch Medical University of Vienna MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  Response: Patients with cancer are at high risk for developing venous thromboembolism (VTE). Venous thromboembolism includes deep vein thrombosis (DVT), when blood clots form in the deep veins of the legs and pulmonary embolism (PE), a potential life-threatening condition when a clot breaks free and lodges in the arteries of the lung. Having a non-O blood type, meaning blood types A, AB or B, is a known risk factor for VTE in the general – non-cancer – population. Interestingly, it is the most common genetic risk factor for thrombosis. If this is also the case in patients with cancer has not been clarified yet. We therefore wanted to assess the role of ABO blood type in cancer-associated thrombosis. To achieve our goal, we utilized the dataset of the Vienna Cancer and Thrombosis Study (CATS); an observational cohort study including adult patients with active cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Dermatology, JAMA, Melanoma, University of Pittsburgh / 08.04.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Laura Ferris, M.D., Ph.D. Professor of Dermatology Director of clinical trials for UPMC Department of Dermatology University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  Response: In this quality initiative at UPMC (a large academic and community health system in Western PA and surrounding areas) Primary Care Physicians were trained to perform annual skin cancer screening examinations of their patients who were aged 35 years and older at routine medical visits. Over a 5-year period more than 595,000 patients who were eligible to be screened were seen by a UPMC PCP and about 24% of them were screened. We compared the number and thickness (an important indicator of prognosis) of the melanomas diagnosed in those patients who were screened to those who were not screened. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, Chocolate, Heart Disease, Supplements / 16.03.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Howard D. Sesso, ScD, MPH Associate Professor of Medicine Division of Preventive Medicine Brigham and Women's Hospital MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study? How does the amount of flavanols in the study arm compare to what might be obtained in a typical diet? Response: The COcoa Supplement and Multivitamin Outcomes Study (COSMOS) is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial that tested the effects of two promising dietary supplements on cardiovascular disease (CVD) and cancer in 21,442 older adults. Cocoa flavanols have been shown to have favorable vascular effects in small and short-term clinical trials. The 500 mg/day flavanols tested in COSMOS exceeds that readily obtained in the diet typically from cocoa, tea, grapes, and berries. Of note, flavanol content in not typically listed on food labels. COSMOS also tested a multivitamin, the most common dietary supplement taken by US adults and previously linked with a potential modest reduction in cancer in a previous long-term trial of men conducted by our research group at the Division of Preventive Medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital. (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, BMJ, Gastrointestinal Disease, Pancreatic / 09.03.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ece Kartal, PhD Postdoctoral Fellow Saez-Rodriguez Group Universitätsklinikum Heidelberg Institute for Computational Biomedicine Heidelberg MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?    Response: Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest types of cancer: although incidence rates are relatively low (only few people develop pancreatic cancer in their lifetimes), it has a high lethality, with a five year survival rate of less than ~5%. Pancreatic cancer symptoms are generally unspecific so that the disease is usually detected very late which further  limits therapeutic options. In light of this, earlier detection of pancreatic cancer could dramatically improve prognosis, but there are currently no affordable and non-invasive tests available in the clinic. For pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC),the most common form of pancreatic cancer, it was previously found that the oral, gut and pancreatic microbiome are risk factors and may affect prognosis . (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Ophthalmology / 08.02.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Saundra Singh M.D., Ph.D. Founder & CEO/President Singh Biotechnology https://www.singhbiotechnology.com/       MedicalResearch.com: What is the mission of Singh Biotechnology?  
  • Our mission is to develop medicine and therapeutics that dramatically improve and save the lives of people worldwide suffering from diseases, including cancer.
MedicalResearch.com: What are the advantages of the Single Domain Antibody technology?
  • The average human antibody is 150 Kd in size and works on the outside of the cell. The advantage of the single domain nanobody is that it is significantly smaller, in fact, it is one-tenth the size (approximately 15 Kd) of the human antibody. A smaller nanobody is more useful therapeutically because, unlike many cancer drugs currently on the market, it can penetrate the blood-brain barrier, the blood-retina barrier, and the cell membrane. Moreover, our SBT-100 drug has been shown to be non-toxic in animal models.
(more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Nutrition, Supplements / 06.01.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Rana Conway PhD RNutr  Research Fellow Energy Balance & Cancer Group, and Obesity Research Group Research Department of Behavioural Science and Health University College London    MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We’ve seen great advances in cancer diagnosis and treatment in recent years which means the number of people living with and beyond a cancer diagnosis is rapidly increasing. The WCRF and CRUK recommend improving diet and exercise to reduce the risks of cancer coming back but we know anecdotally that supplements are sometimes seen as an easier option, and people who’ve had cancer are often interested to know if they should be taking any supplements.    (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Prostate Cancer, Race/Ethnic Diversity, UCLA / 03.01.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ting Martin Ma, MD, PhD Resident Physician Amar U. Kishan, MD Assistant Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology Vice-Chair of Clinical and Translational Research Department of Radiation Oncology at UCLA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We know from epidemiologic studies that  Black men are more likely to be diagnosed with and die of prostate cancer than White men. Recent studies hinted that Black men had better oncological outcome (such as prostate cancer specific mortality and overall survival) responding to systemic therapy for advanced prostate cancer (e.g. cancer that has spread or metastasized to other parts of the body). The question we were trying to answer in this study is: is there a difference in outcomes between Black and White men with localized prostate cancer (cancer that has not spread) receiving definitive radiotherapy enrolled in clinical trials?  (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, HPV / 17.12.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Ashish A. Deshmukh, PhD, MPH Associate Professor, Management, Policy & Community Health Associate Director, Center for Health Services Research Co-director, Clinical Analytics and Decision Science Lab UTHealth School of Public Health Houston, TX 77030 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Oropharyngeal cancer is the most common cancer caused by human papillomavirus (HPV) in the United States (US). We know from previous studies that oropharyngeal cancer to be one of the fastest rising cancers in the US. However, trends (i.e., extent of change) in incidence rates among men and women in all 50 US states and trends according to tumor diagnostic characteristics (i.e., stage, size) have not been comprehensively studied. In addition, no prior study evaluated contemporary trends in oropharyngeal cancer mortality (death) rates in the US. Our study provides a comprehensive picture of oropharyngeal cancer incidence and mortality (according to age, stage, tumor size, and state of residence) in all 50 states and DC. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Dermatology, Lancet, Melanoma, Technology / 11.11.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr David Wen BM BCh NIHR Academic Clinical Fellow in Dermatology University of Oxford MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Publicly available skin image datasets are commonly used to develop machine learning (ML) algorithms for skin cancer diagnosis. These datasets are often utilised as they circumvent many of the barriers associated with large scale skin lesion image acquisition. Furthermore, publicly available datasets can be used as a benchmark for direct comparison of algorithm performance. Dataset and image metadata provide information about the disease and population upon which the algorithm was trained or validated on. This is important to know because machine learning algorithms heavily depend on the data used to train them; algorithms used for skin lesion classification frequently underperform when tested on independent datasets to which they were trained on. Detailing dataset composition is essential for extrapolating assumptions of generalisability of algorithm performance to other populations. At the time this review was conducted, the total number of publicly available datasets globally and their respective content had not previously been characterised. Therefore, we aimed to identify publicly available skin image datasets used to develop ML algorithms for skin cancer diagnosis, to categorise their data access requirements, and to systematically evaluate their characteristics including associated metadata.   (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, COVID -19 Coronavirus, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Radiation Therapy / 01.11.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Brianna M. Jones, MD Radiation Oncology Resident Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in over 4 million deaths worldwide and, presently, there have been over 2 million cases diagnosed in New York. There have been numerous studies that demonstrate cancer patients are at increased risk of diagnosis and mortality to SARS-CoV-2 virus. Several studies have also noted socioeconomic status and race/ethnicity are associated with poorer outcomes. Within NYC, Elmhurst Hospital Center (EHC) emerged as an early epicenter in spring of 2020. The surrounding catchment area of EHC consists of a population that is 54% Latino, 33% Asian, 6% White, 4% Black, 1% Native American, and 1% other according to U.S. Census Bureau, making it one of the most racially and ethnically diverse populations in the country. Its residents are predominantly working-class immigrants with limited resources that work jobs now considered essential (e.g., delivery workers, grocery shops, et cetera). EHC continued to offer a range of cancer services throughout the pandemic. Given the high infection rate and diverse population at EHC, our study provides an opportunity to evaluate outcomes in one of the hardest hit communities to date. Therefore, our aim was to investigate patient characteristics, clinical outcomes, and predictors of COVID-19 diagnosis, severity, and mortality in patients with an active cancer diagnosis at EHC.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research / 27.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Shoshana Rosenzweig Medical Student Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you briefly describe the Phantosmia phenomenon?  Response: Phantosmia is an olfactive disorder resulting in the perception of a foul-smelling odor without odorant stimulus. This study was spearheaded by Dr. Suzanne Wolden, a pediatric radiation oncologist and the senior author of the research. She noticed that patients receiving proton beam therapy were complaining of this phenomenon more than her patients receiving photon therapy. Through this research, the team hoped to characterize radiation treatment induced phantosmia in pediatric, adolescent and young adult patients treated with proton beam therapy and we hoped to identify potential clinical and treatment-related characteristics that may correlate with the development of phantosmia.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Cost of Health Care, JAMA, Lung Cancer, Stanford, USPSTF / 24.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Summer S Han, PhD Assistant Professor Quantitative Sciences Unit Stanford Center for Biomedical Informatics Research (BMIR) Neurosurgery and Medicine Stanford University School of Medicine Stanford, CA 94304  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) issued their 2021 recommendation on lung cancer screening lowering the start age from 55 to 50 years and the minimum pack-year criterion from 30 to 20, relative to the 2013 recommendations. Although costs are expected to increase with the expanded screening eligibility, it is unknown if the new guidelines for lung cancer screening are cost-effective. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, Cost of Health Care, JAMA / 20.10.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anita Katharina Wagner, PharmD, MPH, DrPH Associate Professor of Population Medicine Director, Ethics Program, Point32Health (parent company of Harvard Pilgrim Health Care and Tufts Health Plan) Co-Director, HMS Fellowship in Health Policy and Insurance Research Co-Director, Center for Cancer Policy and Program Evaluation (CarPE) Department of Population Medicine Harvard Medical School and Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The expectation for new cancer drugs is that they help patients live better longer. Increasingly more cancer drugs are approved without documented quality of life or overall survival benefits.   At the same time, cancer drug prices are rising.  We studied use of and spending on selected new cancer drugs among patients with employer-sponsored health insurance. We found that among 37348 patients who received one or more of 44 oral targeted cancer drugs, the proportion of patients who received a drug without documented overall survival benefit increased from 13% in 2011 to 59% in 2018.  By 2018, spending on drugs without documented overall survival benefit accounted for 52% of the $3.5 million spend on the 44 drugs since 2011. (more…)
Aging, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Dermatology, Frailty, JAMA / 08.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marieke van Winden MD MSc PhD candidate Dermatology Radboud Institute for Health Sciences Department of Dermatology Radboud University Medical Center Nijmegen, the Netherlands MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What underlying conditions would factor in a decision for Watchful Waiting?  Response: Basal cell carcinomas are frequently treated because of the risk for progression, which can cause a significant morbidity due to local tissue invasion and destruction. However, most BCCs are characterized by a relatively indolent nature, growing slowly and frequently asymptomatically. Because patients with a limited life expectancy might not live long enough to develop symptoms from basal cell carcinoma progression, they might not live long enough to benefit from treatment. Underlying conditions that determine life expectancy should therefore be considered when weighing BCC management options. When life expectancy is expected to be relatively short, and the consequences of  watchful waiting (WW) are relatively low risk (low tumor burden expected within the remaining lifespan), WW should be considered. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, HPV, JAMA, Vaccine Studies / 07.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Yuehan (Jenny) Zhang, ScM PhD Candidate in Cancer Epidemiology Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is the most common sexually transmitted infectious virus worldwide. Oral HPV infection has resulted in a continual increase in the incidence of oropharynx cancer over the past two decades in the US. New HPV infections are preventable with vaccines, which first entered use in the US in 2006. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Colon Cancer / 02.09.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Sophia Harlid, Ph.D. Associate Professor/Docent in Molecular Epidemiology Department of Radiation Sciences Umeå University Umeå, Sweden MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Antibiotics has previously been associated with in increased risk of colorectal cancer, with this study we were able to use comprehensive registry data to further break down and validate this relationship.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Exercise - Fitness, JAMA, Prostate Cancer / 24.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Kerry S. Courneya, PhD Professor and Canada Research Chair in Physical Activity and Cancer Director, Behavioral Medicine Laboratory and Fitness Center Faculty of Kinesiology, Sport, and Recreation | College of Health Sciences University of Alberta | Edmonton, Alberta | CANADA  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: An increasing number of men with low risk prostate cancer (PCa) do not receive any immediate medical treatments for their PCa. This practice is called active surveillance (AS). It can be very stressful for men because about one-third of them will eventually experience disease progression and require medical treatments. Right now, there is nothing these men can really do for themselves other than to attend all of their follow-up medical visits. Some research has shown that exercise may slow the progression of prostate tumours and metastasis in animal models and improve quality of life in men during and after PCa treatments. Very little research, however, has been conducted in the AS setting. We wanted to see if a high intensity interval training exercise program could improve fitness and prevent or delay biochemical progression of PCa in the AS setting. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, Immunotherapy, Kidney Disease, NEJM / 18.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Toni K. Choueiri, MD Director, Lank Center for Genitourinary Oncology Director, Kidney Cancer Center Jerome and Nancy Kohlberg Chai Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The standard of care for patients diagnosed with locoregional RCC is partial or total nephrectomy. Nearly half of patients will eventually experience disease recurrence following nephrectomy and no standard, globally approved adjuvant therapy options are currently available for this population. The phase 3 KEYNOTE-564 study met its primary objective of demonstrating a statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvement in disease-free survival with pembrolizumab vs placebo as adjuvant therapy for patients with RCC post nephrectomy, supporting pembrolizumab as a potential new standard of care for patients at high risk of disease recurrence following surgery. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Gastrointestinal Disease, Science / 13.08.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr Lizhe Zhuang PhD Dr Karol Nowicki-Osuch PhD Dr. Rebecca C. Fitzgerald MD Medical Research Council Cancer Unit, Hutchison/Medical Research Council Research Centre, University of Cambridge, Cambridge UK MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Barrett’s oesophagus affects about one out of 100 people in the UK and is thought to be a precancerous lesion of a more deadline cancer, oesophageal adenocarcinoma. Barrett’s is a condition where the squamous cells in the lower part of oesophagus are replaced by a special type of columnar cells, which look like intestine, a far distant organ, raising a question where are these columnar cells come from. Many theories have been proposed in the past decades and no agreement was reached, and many conclusions were based on mouse models which do not recap the human condition. We therefore collected fresh samples of human tissues that correspond to all the possible theories and assessed them all together using state of the art technologies.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, COVID -19 Coronavirus, JAMA, Prostate Cancer, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 23.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Andres F. Correa, MD Assistant Professor Department of Surgical Oncology, and Adrien Bernstein, MD Second Year Urologic Oncology Fellow Fox Chase Cancer Center MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Unfortunately, it has been well-established that historically Black Americans experience increased cancer specific mortality compared to white patients. In prostate cancer specifically studies have shown that when access to care is equitable this gap resolves. This suggests that biological factors are not driving these differences but rather the result of the complex interplay of social determinants and systemic inequities in our healthcare system. Early in the pandemic, multiple studies demonstrated that minority communities disproportionately shouldered poor COVID-19 outcomes.  On March 13th 2020, the American College of Surgeons recommended against elective procedures; however, the definition of an elective oncologic case was left to the discretion of the provider. As prostate cancer treatment can be safely deferred up to a year follow diagnosis, management of prostate cancer during the initial lockdown period of the COVID-19 Pandemic provided a useful analysis of the differential restrictions placed on non-emergent health care during the Pandemic. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Melanoma / 22.07.2021

  MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Eleonora Leucci, Ph.D Assistant Professor Laboratory for RNA Cancer Biology Department of Oncology KU Leuven   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Back in 2016, while I was characterising the RNA SAMMSON as essential for mitochondrial translation in melanoma, I noticed that its inhibition was causing cell death across a large spectrum of melanoma cell lines and models, irrespectively of their genetic background and cell state. At that time I still did not know why the effect was so pronounced on melanoma cells, but I knew that antibiotics of the tetracycline family could also block mitochondrial translation and I thought about repurposing them to treat melanoma. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Dermatology, NEJM / 20.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Jane Fang, MD Clinical Athenex, Inc. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Tirbanibulin is a first-in-class synthetic molecule that has potent anti-proliferative activity by inhibiting tubulin polymerization and disrupting src kinase signaling. It has been formulated as an ointment for the treatment of actinic keratosis, a very common precancerous condition of UV-damaged skin that affects over 50 million people in the US. The most commonly adopted management approach is to remove AK lesions as it is hard to predict which lesion will become cancerous. Lesion-directed treatment like cryotherapy can effectively remove lesions one at a time but does not treat larger field of cancerization. Also, it is limited by associated pain and long term complication such as scarring. Currently approved topical treatments involve cumbersome application courses of weeks or months, and induce considerable local skin reactions that were not well tolerated by patients. The Phase 3 studies demonstrated that a short 5-day once daily course of tirbanibulin ointment 1% is an efficacious and safe topical treatment of actinic keratosis. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, CDC, Emory, Gender Differences, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 08.07.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Farhad Islami, MD PHD Scientific Director, Cancer Disparity Research American Cancer Society MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the American Cancer Society (ACS), the National Cancer Institute (NCI), and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR) have collaborated annually since 1998 to provide updated information about cancer occurrence and trends by cancer type, sex, age group, and racial/ethnic group in the United States. In this year’s report, we focus on national cancer statistics and highlight trends in stage-specific survival for melanoma of the skin, the first cancer for which effective immune checkpoint inhibitors were developed. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Breast Cancer / 18.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Frank Vicini, MD, FACR, FASTRO Principal Investigator Radiation Oncologist at GenesisCare Member of NRG Oncology MedicalResearch.com: Would you briefly explain what is meant by DCIS? Response: DCIS stands for ductal carcinoma in situ and indicates the presence of abnormal cells inside a milk duct in one or both breasts. Sometimes referred to as Stage 0 (zero), it is considered the earliest form of breast cancer and is noninvasive. The tumor has not yet left the duct-- a passageway that transports milk from the breast lobules to the nipple-- and begun to invade the healthy tissue surrounding it. Standard treatment options for DCIS include surgery, radiation therapy and hormonal therapy. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Breast Cancer, Cancer Research, Journal Clinical Oncology, Metabolic Syndrome, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Social Issues / 08.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Giampaolo Greco PhD MPH Assistant Professor Department of Population Health Science and Policy Icahn School of Medicine  at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The motivation for our study was to understand why mortality rate from breast cancer is much higher in African American women than in White women, despite the fact that these groups have similar incidence rate of breast cancer. Metabolic syndrome, a cluster of metabolic abnormalities that includes abdominal obesity, hypertension, hyperglycemia and dyslipidemia, is more prevalent among African American women and may be a risk factor for breast cancer. Subjective social status (SSS) is the perception of individuals of their own ranking in the social hierarchy and complements other parameters of socioeconomic status, such as income and education, that are considered more objective. Socioeconomic status is associated with cardiovascular and mental health. Although objective measures of social status are associated with worse breast cancer outcomes, the relationship of SSS to breast cancer is uncertain. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research / 07.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Mai Takahashi MD MPH Mount Sinai Beth Israel - Resident Physician New York, New York MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The incidence of head and neck cancer had been significantly increasing in North America and Europe driven by Human Papillomavirus-related cancer (HPV OPC) which account for more than 60% of total oropharyngeal cancer cases. Compared to environmentally related oropharyngeal cancer, the HPV OPC patient population is generally younger and has a much better prognosis. However, they will suffer from long-term deteriorations in quality of life (QoL) and the declines associated with treatment intensity. Hence multiple studies have focused on de-intensification therapy with reduced dose chemoradiotherapy (CRT).  (more…)
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Journal Clinical Oncology, Prostate Cancer, Radiation Therapy / 04.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Anthony D'Amico, MD, PhD Professor and Chief of Genitourinary Radiation Oncology Brigham and Women's Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: 3 randomized trials published in Sept, 2020 in the Lancet and Lancet Oncology concluded that delivering radiation therapy (RT) after surgery for prostate cancer   when the PSA rises signaling recurrence (i.e. early salvage RT) as opposed to when the PSA is undetectable (i.e. adjuvant RT) did not compromise subsequent cancer progression. However these trials may have missed the benefit of adjuvant RT because a minority of men (9 to 17% of the study cohorts) were found to have adverse factors at prostatectomy which are associated with cancer progression and death from prostate cancer. Specifically, men with adverse pathology at prostatectomy comprise the vast majority of men who go on to die from prostate cancer and therefore have the most to gain from adjuvant RT. Yet, given the results of the 3 randomized trials many physicians are no longer offering adjuvant RT, even in men with adverse pathology at surgery. (more…)
Author Interviews, Breast Cancer, Cancer Research, Radiation Therapy / 03.06.2021

  Professor Jayant S Vaidya MBBS MS DNB FRCS PhD Professor of Surgery and Oncology University College London MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What type of single dose radiation is used? Response: The new paper published in the British Journal of Cancer (go.nature.com/3yN0mzu) expands on the previously published results of the large international randomised trial (TARGIT-A trial)(BMJ 2020;370:m2836), that confirmed the long-term effectiveness of Targeted Intraoperative Radiotherapy (TARGIT-IORT): a breast cancer treatment which is increasingly available throughout the world. The TARGIT-A trial found that a single dose of targeted radiotherapy during surgery (TARGIT-IORT) is just as effective as conventional radiotherapy, which requires several visits to hospital after surgery. From the perspective of patients, it is so much better for them and also allows prompt completion of cancer treatment during the COVID pandemic. Conventional external beam radiotherapy (EBRT) is delivered from outside the body via a radiotherapy machine (linear accelerator), and consists of a daily treatment session (known as fractions) to the whole breast, over a period between three to six weeks. Each of these treatments is given over a few minutes, but requires up to 30 hospital visits, which could be a significant distance from where the patient lives. TARGIT-IORT is delivered immediately after lumpectomy (tumour removal), via a small ball-shaped device placed inside the breast, directly where the cancer had been. The single-dose treatment lasts for around 20 to 30 minutes and replaces the need for extra hospital visits, benefiting both patient safety and well-being. The device used is called INTRABEAM. The new results are described on the Nature.com and UCL webpages https://go.nature.com/3ymrplc blog https://www.ucl.ac.uk/news/2021/may/pioneering-single-dose-radiotherapy-breast-cancer-treatment and explained in a short video https://youtu.be/w0OMjVfJ5pY  (more…)
Author Interviews, Lipids, Prostate Cancer / 03.06.2021

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Michelle Hill, PhD Head, Precision & Systems Biomedicine Group QIMR Berghofer Medical Research Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The role of cholesterol and cholesterol lowering drug therapy in prostate cancer has been previously investigated with mixed results. Our previous laboratory studies indicate that high cholesterol diet accelerates the spreading of advanced prostate cancer. We also observed a change of the cellular location of cholesterol, from the cell periphery (plasma membrane) to inside the cell. This study investigates the how the change in cholesterol location promotes prostate cancer spread. (more…)