Low oxygen levels in cells may be a primary cause of uncontrollable tumor growth in some cancers, according to a new University of Georgia study. The authors' findings run counter to widely accepted beliefs that genetic mutations are responsible for cancer growth. If hypoxia, or low oxygen levels in cells, is proven to be a key driver of certain types of cancer, treatment plans for curing the malignant growth could change in significant ways, said Ying Xu, Regents-Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar and professor of bioinformatics and computational biology in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. The research team analyzed samples of messenger RNA data - also called transcriptomic data - from seven different cancer types in a publicly available database. They found that long-term lack of oxygen in cells may be a key driver of cancer growth.
Cohesin is a ring-shaped protein complex involved in the spatial organization of the genome and in mitotic chromosome structure. Vertebrate somatic cells have two versions of cohesin that contain either SA1 or SA2, but their functional specificity has been largely ignored. Researchers of the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO) under the direction of Ana Losada have identified new functions of cohesin SA1 that are relevant for two human diseases, cancer and Cornelia de Lange Syndrome (CdLS). These results are published in two papers that appear back-to-back in EMBO Journal. The first study shows that SA1 is required for efficient duplication of chromosome ends, the telomeres. In its absence, aberrant telomere structures hinder chromosome segregation during cell division and aneuploid cells (i.
Research conducted at the Oregon National Primate Research Center at Oregon Health & Science University helps answer some long-standing questions about how certain disease-causing gene mutations are inherited. The research specifically focused on gene mutations in cell mitochondria that can cause several diseases, including forms of cancer, diabetes, infertility and neurodegenerative diseases. With this new information, we now better understand how and when these mutations are passed to children to improve diagnosis and prevention. The research will be published online in the journal Cell Reports. Shoukhrat Mitalipov, Ph.D., who previously developed a method for preventing the passing of mitochondrial genetic mutations from mother to infant in 2009, directed the research. This latest breakthrough, which was conducted in rhesus macaque monkeys because of their similarity to humans, demonstrates the specific stage of early embryonic development when genetic mutations are passed from mother to fetus.
The use of single positron emission computed tomography (SPECT)/computed tomography (CT) has been reported to change clinical management in a significant number of thyroid cancer patients according to research presented in the May issue of /i>The Journal of Nuclear Medicine. Information obtained from these scans not only helps determine the need for radioiodine therapy or alterative options, but also impacts the long-term follow-up strategy. "In this article I aimed to highlight the role of radioiodine imaging in risk stratification of patients with thyroid cancer and to assess the contribution it brings to the completion of staging and the decision to omit or proceed with I-131 therapy, " said Anca M. Avram, MD, author of "Radioiodine Scintigraphy with SPECT/CT: An Important Diagnostic Tool for Thyroid Cancer Staging and Risk Stratification.
New evidence, studied by researchers in the Department of Cancer Studies and Molecular Medicine, at the University of Leicester, reveals that curcumin, found in the curry ingredient turmeric, may significantly reduce side effects for bowel cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy and help them to be able to go through treatment longer. Usually, patients suffering from bowel cancer are treated with FOLFOX, a combination of 3 chemotherapy medications. However, between 40 and 60 percent of bowel cancer patients do not benefit from this treatment, and those who do report painful side effects, including nerve pain and horrible tingling, can only do reduced chemotherapy cycles. Put simply, their chemotherapy treatments have to be stopped earlier. A trial at the University of Leicester, England, will begin investigating the benefits of curcumin, in conjunction with chemotherapy medication.