13 January 2017
The microbiome affect ER+ breast cancer risk
The impact on our health of the mutually beneficial relationship with the microbes in and on our body – called the microbiome – can’t be underestimated. Each gram of colon content contains a number of bacteria in the same order of magnitude as the stars present in the Milky Way galaxy. Naturally, these bacteria influence our metabolism, and which bacteria thrive is determined by factors such as genetics, diet, alcohol intake and medication. This paper summarizes the available research on how the microbiome affects estrogen levels in the body and influences the risk of developing estrogen receptor positive breast cancer.
6 January 2017
An active lifestyle lowers the risk of 10 types of cancer
It’s common knowledge that an active lifestyle has health benefits. However, compared to heart disease, the impact on cancer risk specifically is not very well understood. This study pooled the results of multiple EU and US research projects for greater statistical power. Of 26 types of cancer under investigation, 10 could be lowered with a more active lifestyle.
30 December 2016
A potential targeting method for TNBC treatment
Triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC) lack the molecules on their cell surface that are used in targeted therapies of other breast cancers. This makes them difficult to treat, leading to poorer outcomes for patients. An alternative target could be the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), which is present in greater numbers on the surface of many TNBC. As it is also present on healthy cells, targeting this molecule could lead to toxicity. In this study, an antibody is used that can specifically recognize the EGFR on cancer cells. Binding it to a bacterial toxin creates a potential targeted therapy for TNBC.
23 December 2016
Can fucose lead drugs to colon cancer cells?
SN38 is a powerful anticancer drug for metastatic colorectal cancer (CRC). The main challenge is selectively exposing cancer cells to avoid toxicity and side effects. Based on observations that some cancer cell lines actively take up a specific type of sugar called fucose, its potential use in drug targeting was investigated. In this study, fucose-bound nanoparticles were used to deliver SN38 specifically to cancer cells.
5 September 2016
Better colon cancer outcomes for coffee drinkers?
Many recent studies link the risk of developing colon cancer with an excess energy balance and subsequently increased blood insulin levels. Coffee consumption has been associated with a decreased risk of type 2 diabetes. Combining these insights, the association of coffee intake with cancer recurrence and mortality was examined in stage III colon cancer patients by tracking their diet and lifestyle in great detail.
2 September 2016
Biomarker identifies colon cancer patients who benefit from chemotherapy after surgery
A means of characterizing stage II colon cancers would allow the identification of high-risk patients who need additional treatment after surgery. New approaches evaluating the expression of multiple genes hold promise, but are currently still too complex for clinical practice. In this study, a new biomarker was found, which could identify at-risk patients using currently available clinical-grade diagnostic assays.
31 August 2016
Buttermilk composition influences its anticancer effect
Buttermilk is a rich source of bioactive polar lipids and proteins. The effect of these molecules in cancer management has been known for over 40 years. This study compared the growth modulatory effects of buttermilks with a different composition on a human colon cancer cell line.
24 August 2016
Sleep inducing hormone puts breast cancer cells to rest
It’s pretty easy to connect the dots between a lack of sleep and an increased risk of a deadly car crash. But what about an increased risk of cancer? A 2012 study of 101 women newly diagnosed with breast cancer found that those with inadequate sleep were more likely to have more aggressive tumors. Though the results of this survey were statistically significant, the biological connection between sleep and breast cancer is not well understood. However, a new study may provide an explanation.
10 August 2016
A novel approach to Ewing sarcoma therapy
Ewing sarcoma is an aggressive bone tumor, most often found in adolescents and young adults. In 85% of the cases, the cells contain a genetic defect where parts are exchanged between two chromosomes, resulting in the production of an oncogenic protein. As this protein is not present in normal cells, disrupting its function is an interesting therapeutic strategy. Previous attempts to target this mechanism directly have failed, but a deeper insight has revealed a new indirect method with potential.
8 August 2016
Breast cancer drug also improves survival in advanced soft-tissue sarcoma
Eribulin is currently approved for metastatic breast cancer. Recently, it has also shown activity in patients with progressive soft-tissue sarcomas who were already treated for advanced disease. In this study, its effect was compared to an active control. A positive effect on survival was found, with an acceptable level of side-effects. This drug can thus be considered an additional tool for the treatment of advanced soft-tissue sarcoma and will be investigated more closely.