AACR, Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Breast Cancer, Cancer Research / 11.04.2024

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: RJ Tesi M.D. CEO and Founder of INmune Bio MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
  • MUC4 expression by high-risk breast cancer (HER2+ or TNBC) is a biomarker that predicts resistance to therapy and an increased risk a metastasis. MUC4 expression can be determined at time of biopsy and therapeutic decisions should be adjusted to optimize the chance of response to first line therapy.
This biomarker is easily determined using immunohistochemistry in the diagnostic breast biopsy tissue similar to testing for HER2 expression. Testing for MUC4 can be easily added to the current panel of routine stains obtained at the time of the diagnostic biopsy. Knowing MUC4 status in women with high-risk breast cancer will improve results.
  • Soluble TNF causes the up regulation of immune checkpoint proteins of cells of the TME. This includes CD47 and SIRPa on tumor based macrophages and CTLA4, PD1, LAG3 and TIGIT on T cells in the TME. INB03 is a pan immune checkpoint modulator. Treatment with INB03 downregulates all immune checkpoint proteins on the cells. Downmodulation of all immune checkpoint proteins improves response to immunotherapy.
Currently, monoclonal antibodies targeting immune checkpoint proteins are a mainstay of cancer therapy and cancer drug development. These strategies target one immune checkpoint protein at a time. To date, combination therapy targeting two immune checkpoint proteins has been tried (e.g.: anti-PD1 and anti-CTLA4 combination therapy) with mixed results. Combination immune checkpoint strategies may increase therapeutic response but increase toxicity. INB03 downregulates all immune checkpoint proteins. This is equivalent to giving a patient a 6 antibody cocktail – something that cannot be done in man. As expected, decreased immune checkpoint expression improves response to therapy by converting immunotherapy resistant tumors to immunotherapy sensitive tumors.
  • In TNBC, MUC4 expression predicts both resistance to anti-PD1 therapy and increased risk of distant metastasis. Treatment with INB03 decreases expression of proteins associated with tumor metastasis, decreases the number of metastasis and improves response to anti-PD1 therapy. Early use of INB03 may prevent distal disease and improve tumor control.
Addiction, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Cannabis / 23.03.2024

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Brian J. Piper, PhD Associate Professor of Neuroscience Geisinger Commonwealth School of Medicine Scranton PA 18411 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Many cancer patients use marijuana to treat pain, nausea, or anxiety, often without communicating this with their health care providers. Two observational studies (1, 2) from a single institution in Israel purporting to find a dangerous drug interaction between medical cannabis and immunotherapy have been cited hundreds of times, including by clinical practice guidelines. The cannabinoid CB2 receptor is found on immune tissues so it is biologically possible that marijuana could make immunotherapies like nivolumab less effective. However, there were anonymous reports on PubPeer (3-5) of many irregularities in the data-analysis. If there were unappreciated differences on other important variables at baseline besides subsequent cannabis use, this could change the interpretation of these influential reports (1, 2). This investigation involved attempting to repeat and verify the data-analysis. (more…)
Author Interviews, Environmental Risks, Thyroid / 27.10.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Maaike van Gerwen, MD, PhD Assistant Professor Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery Institute for Translational Epidemiolog Director of Research Department of Otolaryngology- Head and Neck Surgery Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Where are these PFAS chemicals found? Response: Over the past decades, we have seen an increasing trend in thyroid cancer which cannot be fully explained by increased use of medical imaging (including ultrasound). Certain environmental exposure are known to impact on the thyroid gland, including thyroid dysfunction or development of cancer. PFAS are chemicals that are known to disrupt the function of endocrine organs, such as the thyroid gland. We therefore hypothesized that PFAS exposure may be one of the potential risk factors for thyroid cancer and thus one of the potential reason for the increasing thyroid cancer incidence. PFAS chemicals are widespread in the environment and have been found in the soil, water, and air. PFAS are also widely used in a variety of consumer products including non-stick cookware, stain resisting fabric, firefighting foams, but are also found in drinking water and food. This leads to an almost universal exposure of the general population. (more…)
Breast Cancer, Technology / 22.10.2023

Breast cancer accounts for 12.5% of new annual cases in the world, making it the most common of all cancers. Early detection is vital, since when breast cancer is localized, it boasts a 99% survival rate. Despite this fact, only 64% of breast cancer cases are detected at a localized stage in the US, according to data obtained from the National Breast Cancer Foundation. The good news is that scientists at MIT have developed a new device that can simply be incorporated into a bra. Doing so would allow more frequent monitoring of people with a high risk for breast cancer and it would enable women to detect very early stage tumors.
A Patch In Time
The device is a flexible patch that can be attached to any bra. It has an ultrasound tracker that can analyze breast tissue from various angles—and the images obtained are as high in quality as those obtained from ultrasound probes used in medical imaging clinics The device provides real-time information that is easy to access and interpret. The development of the device resulted from the personal experience of MIT associate professor. Canan Dagdeviren. The latter’s aunt was diagnosed with late-stage breast cancer at the age of 49, passing away six months later. While sitting by her aunt’s bedside, the researchers created a rough schematic of a diagnostic patch that could be incorporated into a brassiere. The aim was to enable women to obtain more frequent information instead of depending on a once-yearly (or less frequent) checkup. Dagdeviren’s device is essentially a miniature 3D-printed ultrasound scanner that has tiny openings. It can be rotated to obtain images from a plethora of angles, and does not require medical expertise to use. The device leverages the very latest technology, including AI algorithms, biomedical systems, and low-power circuits
Author Interviews, Breast Cancer, JAMA, OBGYNE, Surgical Research / 04.10.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Gabriele Martelli, MD Breast Unit, Surgery Fondazione IRCCS Istituto Nazionale dei Tumori Milan, Italy MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Approximately 8% of breast cancer cases are associated with pathogenic germline variants of the BRCA1 or BRCA2 genes. Women with a pathogenic BRCA1 variant have lifetime risks of breast or ovarian cancer of 45% to 80% and 30% to 60%, respectively. Women with a pathogenic BRCA2 variant have lifetime risks of breast or ovarian cancer of 35% to 60% and 10% to 25%, respectively. BRCA1 breast cancer is often more aggressive than sporadic disease, while BRCA2 breast cancer is often of similar aggressivity to sporadic disease. However, few studies have investigated outcomes of breast-conserving surgery, prophylactic mastectomy, or prophylactic salpingo-oophorectomy in patients with BRCA1/2 breast cancer. We conducted a cohort study to assess outcomes of breast-conserving surgery vs mastectomy, prophylactic mastectomy vs no prophylactic mastectomy, and prophylactic salpingo-oophorectomy vs no prophylactic salpingo-oophorectomy in patients with BRCA1/2 breast cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Gastrointestinal Disease / 16.08.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Daniel L. Worthley MBBS (Hons), PhD, MPH, FRACP, AGAF Gastroenterologist Associate Professor University of Adelaide MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Cells are revolutionising healthcare, from modern faecal microbial transplantation in the gut to CAR-T cells fighting cancers, life healing life. Some aspects of cellular care are so entrenched in medicine that they are almost overlooked for the miraculous cellular therapies that they are, such as stem cell transplantation to treat haematological malignancies and, of course, in vitro fertilization, life creating life. Modern medicine is slowly, but surely, pivoting from pills to cells. Professor Siddhartha Mukherjeee, oncologist, scientist, and author, provides a beautiful thesis of this in his book Song of the Cell and in his TED talk on the cellular revolution in medicine (https://youtu.be/qG_YmIPFO68?feature=shared). I was lucky enough to have trained with Sid as a post-doc at Columbia and this concept was really drummed into me. But, as a gastroenterologist, perhaps it was the bacterial cells, rather than the blood cells, that had most to offer in the management of bowel disorders? Around the same time, Professors Jeff Hasty, Tal Danino and Omar Din from UC San Diego had been inventing and publishing, in my opinion, the best bacterial engineering work that has ever been produced to specifically target cancer. I remember when we first reviewed their 2016 Nature paper in our lab meeting (https://www.nature.com/articles/nature18930#citeas), it was like – “We gotta meet these guys!”. Through Tal, who was by then, working at Columbia, I was introduced to Jeff and I attended his lab meeting back in 2019. That was where our project began after a lab meeting in La Jolla. Rob Cooper had presented his work on horizontal gene transfer. Everything that comes out of Jeff’s lab is both practical and reproducible but also beautiful. Beautiful in a scientific self-evident way that instantly communicates the purpose, approach and outcomes of an experiment. Rob’s presentation that day was a case-in-point. Rob was studying genes and gene transfer in bacteria (see part of Rob’s fascinating presentation here, https://youtu.be/5nBsRF-BsA8?feature=shared). Genes are the fundamental unit of heredity and gene transfer (or inheritance) the process by which genes are passed from one cell to another. Genes may be inherited vertically when one cell replicates its DNA and divides into two, now separate, cells (reproduction). Genes are the stuff, and vertical gene transfer is the process, by which you receive your mother’s laugh and your father’s eyebrows. Genes may also, however, be inherited horizontally when DNA is passed between unrelated cells, outside of parent to offspring inheritance. Horizontal gene transfer is quite common in the microbial world. Certain bacteria can salvage genes from cell-free DNA found within its environment. This sweeping up of cell-free DNA, into a cell, is called natural competence. So, competent bacteria can sample their nearby environment and, in doing so, acquire genes that may provide a selective advantage to that cell. Like cellular panning for flecks of gold in a stream. After Rob’s presentation, Jeff, Rob and I started to discuss the possibilities. If bacteria can take up DNA, and cancer is defined genetically by a change in its DNA then, theoretically, bacteria could be engineered to detect cancer. Colorectal cancer seemed a logical proof of concept as the colorectal lumen is full of microbes and, in the setting of cancer, full of tumour DNA.  When a biophysicist, a scientist and a gastroenterologist walk into a bar, after a lab meeting, this is what can happen! Professor Susi Woods and Dr Josephine Wright, superb cancer scientists from Adelaide, Australia, were quickly recruited in as essential founding members of the group. We all got to work. Australian and US grants, lots of experiments, early morning Zoom calls across the Pacific, inventing new animal models and approaches, i.e. a many year, iterative process of design-build-test-learn, that got us all to where we are now. (more…)
Author Interviews, Brain Cancer - Brain Tumors, Cancer Research / 09.08.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Sibaji Sarkar, Ph.D. Division of Biotech, Quincy College Quincy MA. Biology/STEM MBC College, Wellesley MA, Boston MA. MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main developmental differences between adult and pediatric tumors? Response: The treatment of both pediatric and adult types of brain tumors is complex.  The treatment and prognosis depend on their origin, development, progression and location. It is extremely important that the origin, which involves formation of cancer stem/progenitor cells, is investigated to understand growth, drug resistance and relapse of the brain tumors. Pediatric brain tumors often are less metastatic and treatable but chemo leaves adverse effects for longer times. Adult metastatic brain tumors usually have worse prognosis. To understand and develop better treatments we need to understand the differences in the origin and progression of these different types of brain tumor [1]. One of the important aspects is epigenetic alterations. Epigenetic alterations are reversible and different from mutations in genes, which are usually permanent. In epigenetic alterations, modifications occur on DNA or the protein histones around which the DNA is folded and they regulate whether a gene will express or not (will make a protein or not), that determines a special function. (more…)
Author Interviews, JAMA, Ovarian Cancer / 04.08.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Zai LabRafael Amado, M.D. President, head of Global Oncology Research and Development Zai Lab MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Zai lab is focused on discovering and developing innovative therapies that will help address medical conditions where there are serious unmet needs. Advanced ovarian cancer, with a low survival and high recurrence rate, is a key focus of our oncology R&D research. In addition to our own discovery program, as part of our open innovation model we partner with companies to license drugs for patients in China and co-develop therapies to address leading causes of cancer death. We currently have a license and collaboration agreement with GSK for the development and commercialization of ZEJULA (niraparib) in mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau. PRIME was a follow-on study to a previously conducted study called PRIMA, which demonstrated clinical benefit of niraparib in newly diagnosed patients with advanced ovarian cancer regardless of biomarker status. The PRIMA study enrolled a population at high risk of recurrence. Thirty-five percent of patients in PRIMA received an individualized starting dose (ISD) of niraparib based on their baseline weight and platelet count. To further evaluate the efficacy and safety of niraparib with an ISD in a broad population, we decided to conduct the PRIME study. We wanted to explore further whether we could decrease toxicity using an ISD and how it would affect clinical outcomes. The Phase 3 PRIME study was conducted at 29 hospitals in mainland China. PRIME was a randomized, placebo-controlled trial designed to evaluate the efficacy and safety of niraparib at an ISD as first-line maintenance therapy in a broad range of patients with newly diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer. All patients in PRIME received an ISD based on their baseline body weight and platelet count. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Colon Cancer, Red Meat / 13.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Dr. Suneel Kamath MD Gastrointestinal Oncologist Cleveland Clinic Senior Author on this research       MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Colorectal cancer rates in young people under age 50 are skyrocketing and have been for the last 3-4 decades. We really don’t understand why because most cases (probably around 70%) are not genetic or hereditary, just random, unfortunate events. We suspect that it is some exposure(s) like excess consumption of red meat, processed foods, sugar-sweetened beverages, excess antibiotic use altering the microbiome, rising incidence of obesity or some other factors. We really don’t know why yet. Our study used a technology called metabolomics, the study of breakdown products and production building blocks for our bodies, to look for differences in colorectal cancer in young people versus people that are older that developed colorectal cancer. Because metabolomics measures how each individual interacts with the exposures in our environment like diet, air quality, etc., it is a way to bridge the gap between our nature (determined by genetics) and nurture (determined by our exposures). (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Genetic Research, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Stanford / 06.06.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Allison W. Kurian, M.D., M.Sc. Professor of Medicine and of Epidemiology and Population Health Associate Chief, Division of Oncology Co-Leader, Population Sciences Program, Stanford Cancer Institute Director, Women’s Clinical Cancer Genetics Program Stanford University School of Medicine Stanford, CA 94305-5405 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What types of cancers were in the study? Response: Genetic testing for cancer risk is increasingly important after a cancer diagnosis, to inform use of targeted therapies, secondary cancer prevention approaches and cascade genetic testing of family members. However, very little is known about how genetic testing is used after a cancer diagnosis at the population level. We leveraged a very large population-based data resource, the Surveillance, Epidemiology and End Results (SEER) cancer registries of the states of California and Georgia, and linked data from these registries to clinical genetic testing results provided by the four major laboratories that provide such testing. We used this linked registry-genetic testing dataset to study adults (age >=20 years) diagnosed with all types of cancer in the states of Georgia and California from 2013-2019. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, NCI, Ovarian Cancer / 21.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Lauren Hurwitz, PhD Postdoctoral Fellow Division of Cancer Epidemiology & Genetics National Cancer Institute MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Prior studies have demonstrated that frequent (i.e., daily or near daily) use of aspirin is associated with a lower risk of developing ovarian cancer. We sought to determine if this risk reduction is also observed for individuals with greater genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer, who may benefit more from preventive interventions. Our study found that individuals who took aspirin frequently had a lower risk of ovarian cancer, regardless of whether they had higher or lower genetic susceptibility to ovarian cancer. (more…)
AACR, Author Interviews, Cancer Research / 18.04.2023

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Matthew H. Taylor, MD Earle A. Chiles Research Institute Providence Cancer Institute Portland, OR MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What is the importance of ILT4 or LILRB2 in tumor growth?
  1. ILT4, also known as LILRB2, is expressed on myeloid cells, including monocytes, DCs, macrophages and neutrophils. LILRB2 expressing myeloid cells promote tumor immune evasion and contribute to anti-PD1 resistance, making this a promising target to reverse myeloid-mediated immune suppression in the TME.
  2. IO-108 is a fully human IgG4 therapeutic antibody that binds to LILRB2 with high affinity and specificity, and blocks binding of LILRB2 to multiple cancer-relevant ligands. This blockade causes re-programming of immune suppressive myeloid cells to pro-inflammatory in the tumor microenvironment leading to the activation of T cells.
  3. This first-in-human, open-label Phase 1 study of IO-108 as monotherapy or in combination with pembrolizumab was designed to learn about safety, tolerability and preliminary efficacy of IO-108 as monotherapy or in combination with a PD-1 inhibitor in patients with advanced, metastatic solid tumors. The study was also designed to find a dose of IO-108 that is safe and efficacious to be tested in patients with various solid tumors.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Duke, Heart Disease, Pediatrics / 06.12.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Amy Berkman, MD Department of Pediatrics Duke University School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Cancer incidence in adolescents and young adults (AYAs, aged 15-39 years at diagnosis) is increasing, with approximately 90,000 new diagnoses annually in the US. Improvements in 5-year survival have led to a growing population of survivors of AYA cancer, currently estimated at >600,000 survivors. Survivors are at increased risk of treatment related chronic conditions including cardiovascular disease (CVD). We wanted to determine whether certain sociodemographic and medical history factors further increase the risk of CVD in AYA cancer survivors and also compare risk of CVD between AYA cancer survivors and the general population. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Colon Cancer, Genetic Research, Nature / 18.10.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Royce Zhou, MD/PhD Candidate Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The background of this story is to see whether things outside of the cancer cell, such as the tumor microenvironment, can lead to epigenetic changes within the cancer cell. These changes are largely believed to be due to factors inside the cell, not outside. Super-enhancers are the top 1-2% of enhancers in the genome. They control cell identity genes and oncogenes in cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Dermatology, Melanoma / 22.09.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: “Prof. Ronit Satchi-Fainaro, the Director of the Cancer Biology Research Center led this study with an outstanding PhD student, Sabina Pozzi” Prof. Ronit Satchi-Fainaro, Ph.D. Head, Cancer Research and Nanomedicine Laboratory Kurt and Herman Lion Chair in Nanosciences and Nanotechnologies Director, Cancer Biology Research Center Department of Physiology and Pharmacology Sackler Faculty of Medicine Sagol School of Neuroscience Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Cutaneous melanoma is the deadliest of all skin cancers, especially due to its tendency to invade and develop metastases with an incidence of brain metastasis development of 40% to 50% in patients with melanoma stage IV (although the incidence post mortem is 70–90%). We know that the brain microenvironment represents the first line of reaction in favor or against the tumor due to its dual ability to generate an immune-stimulatory or immunosuppressive niche, which will ultimately determine the establishment and growth of melanoma brain metastasis. Among the brain-resident cells, astrocytes are responsible for the maintenance of the brain homeostasis, and subsequent to melanoma brain colonization, they sustain and foster the growth of melanoma cells (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research / 09.08.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Sarah S. Jackson PhD Infections and Immunoepidemiology Branch Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics National Cancer Institute Bethesda, MD 20892 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There are many cancers that both men and women can develop, specifically those that do not affect the reproductive tract. Men have higher rates of these nonreproductive cancers than women. There are only two nonreproductive cancer types that are more common in women: thyroid and gallbladder. Historically, we have thought this is because women are less likely to smoke or drink and are more likely to eat well and exercise than men. This study sought to examine the sex bias in cancer incidence after controlling for those lifestyle factors to see if this explained the male predominance in cancer. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Nutrition / 26.07.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Prof. John C. Mathers PhD Director, Human Nutrition Research Centre Director, Centre for Healthier Lives Population Health Sciences Institute Newcastle University Newcastle on Tyne UK MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?   Response: My colleagues and I have had a long-term interest in carrying out studies in people with hereditary cancer as a model for cancer in the general population. Here we studied people with Lynch syndrome who have an inherited defect in one of the genes encoding the DNA mismatch repair system. Because of this, they accumulate DNA damage faster than the general population and are prone to early cancers at several sites around the body. In the CAPP2 Study, we randomised almost 1000 people with Lynch syndrome to either resistant starch or to an ordinary corn-starch placebo. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 10.06.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marquita W. Lewis-Thames, PhD (she/her/Dr.) Assistant Professor, Department of Medical Social Science Center for Community Health, Member Researcher Assistant Directors of Community Outreach and Engagement, Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  What are the main findings?  Response: Incidence, mortality, and survivorship provide a comprehensive description of cancer for a group of people. Differences in cancer incidence and mortality trends by rural-urban status and race and ethnicity are well documented, but urban-rural cancer survivorship trends by race and ethnicity are unknown. To this end, we examined almost 40 years of racial and ethnic differences by rural-urban status for 5-year survival of patients with lung, prostate, breast, and colorectal cancers. Using a nationwide epidemiological assessment of 1975-2011 data from the SEER database, we found that 5-year cancer-specific survival trends increased for all cancer types and race and ethnic groups, regardless of rural or urban status. Generally, rural, and non-Hispanic Black cancer patients had worse survival outcomes than others. (more…)
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, COVID -19 Coronavirus, NYU / 08.06.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Katherine Garcia MD NYU Langone Health MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  Response: Studies on cancer patients during the COVID-19 pandemic have shown a decrease in new diagnoses, delays in care, and a shift to later stage disease presentations. Considering that NY has been an epicenter for COVID-19 in the U.S., we investigated its impact on new cancer diagnoses at the two campuses of NYU’s Perlmutter Cancer Center and hypothesized that there would be a decrease in presentations during the peak outbreaks in NY. (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Nature, Pancreatic, University of Michigan / 03.06.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Imad Shureiqi, MD, MS Professor, Division of Hematology and Oncology Department of Internal Medicine Rogel Cancer Center Ann Arbor, MI, 48109 MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?   Response: Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma is a highly lethal form of cancer with rising occurrence, and strategies to prevent and treat the disease are urgently needed. Most cases of pancreatic cancer arise from pre-cancerous lesions called pancreatic intraepithelial neoplasia (PanIN); about 55-80% of adults over forty are estimated to have these low-grade pre-cancerous silent pancreatic lesions. But critical factors that promote the progression of pancreatic pre-cancerous lesions to pancreatic cancer remain poorly defined, especially those easy to target. Findings from this publication indicate that people who have silent PanIN pre-cancerous lesions, even those that are low-grade, could increase their risk of PanIN progression into pancreatic cancer by consuming activators of a nuclear lipid receptor called peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor-delta (PPARδ). PPARδ activators can be natural substances, such certain fatty acids like palmitic and arachidonic acid in high-fat diets, or synthetic ones, like Cardarine (GW501516). (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Gastrointestinal Disease / 20.05.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Bashar J. Qumseya, MD, MPH, FASGE Associate Professor of Medicine Chief of Endoscopy University of Florida, Gainesville  MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  What are the main findings? Response: Barrett’s esophagus (BE), is a premalignant condition that can lead to esophageal cancer (called esophageal adenocarcinoma). Both diseases have historically been thought of as diseases of elderly white males. While both diseases have been on the rise in the elderly population, we noted that some cancers are becoming more common at younger ages. We wanted to see if the prevalence of BE and EC are increasing at younger ages.  We aimed to assess the prevalence of BE in and EAC based on age group in a large database of over 5 million patients.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, Cancer Research, Colon Cancer / 18.05.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: AmirAli Talasaz Ph.D. co-CEO, Guardant Health MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this announcement? Response: On May 2, Guardant Health announced the availability of Shield™, our first blood-based test for the detection of early-stage colorectal cancer (CRC). Colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer deaths in the U.S., so this announcement represents a tremendous public health opportunity. Here’s why: This new test will help people identify more CRC at its earliest stages, when it is most treatable. It offers an accurate, easy-to-complete, blood-based approach to CRC screening. It can be completed with a convenient blood draw during any healthcare provider visit.  (more…)
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, NIH, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 05.05.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Megan Clarke, Ph.D., M.H.S., Earl Stadtman Investigator Division of Cancer Epidemiology and Genetics National Cancer Institute MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study? 
  • Through our prior work, we have demonstrated that uterine cancer incidence rates have been significantly increasing in the U.S. from 2003 to 2015 and that these increases were primarily driven by rising rates of aggressive (non-endometrioid) subtypes of this cancer. We observed that rates of these aggressive cancers increased among all women and were more than twice as high among Non-Hispanic Black women compared to other racial and ethnic groups. Factors explaining these trends, as well as the disproportionately higher rates of these aggressive subtypes among non-Hispanic Black women, remain unclear, in part because risk factors are poorly understood.
  • In addition to differences in incidence rates by race and ethnicity, we have also observed strong disparities in our prior studies, with Non-Hispanic Black women having substantially lower 5-year survival, regardless of subtype or stage at diagnosis, compared to other racial and ethnic populations.
  • The next logical step, and the focus of the current study, was to evaluate how increases in the incidence of aggressive, non-endometrioid uterine cancer affects racial disparities and rates of death from uterine cancer.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, Race/Ethnic Diversity, Radiology / 27.04.2022

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Leticia NogueiraPhDMPH Senior Principal Scientist, Health Services Research American Cancer Society, Inc. Kennesaw, GA 30144 MedicalResearch.com:  What is the background for this study?  Response: Proton Beam Therapy (PBT) can deliver higher dose of radiation to the tumor with less damage to surrounding healthy cells. Therefore, PBT is potentially superior to photon-based radiation therapy to treat tumors with complex anatomy, surrounded by sensitive tissues, or for treating childhood cancer (where long-term side effects of radiation therapy are a main concern). However, PBT can cost twice as much as photon-based radiation therapy.  (more…)
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, 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, 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…)