Monday, January 30, 2006

Celebrex, Vioxx may reduce breast cancer risk by up to 71 percent

Newindie Press, January 31 2006
A new study has found that daily use of selective COX-2 inhibitors, such as celecoxib (Celebrex) and rofecoxib (Vioxx), reduces the risk of breast cancer by up to 71 percent.The study, by Randall Harris and colleagues from The Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health, Columbus, Ohio, which highlights the potential of Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) for the prevention of breast cancer, was based on data collected on 323 patients with invasive breast cancer shortly after their diagnosis. The researchers observed that while daily use of selective COX-2 inhibitors was associated with a 71 percent reduction in the risk of breast cancer, non-selective COX-2 inhibitors, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, also reduced the risk of breast cancer. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Aspirin linked to breast cancer reduction

Health News at NetDoctor, January 30, 2006
The risk of breast cancer can be significantly reduced through regular use of COX-2 inhibitors such as aspirin, new research claims. COX-2 inhibitors are used to treat pain and inflammation and scientists in the US have discovered that daily use of the selective form of the drugs, such as celecoxib (Celebrex) and rofecoxib (Vioxx), is associated with a 71 per cent reduction in the risk of breast cancer in a group of subjects. The team from the Ohio State university college of medicine and public health, Columbus, also found that daily use of non-selective COX-2 inhibitors, such as aspirin and ibuprofen, also reduces the risk of breast cancer. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Saturday, January 28, 2006

New pathway could present an intervention point for cancer treatment

Batlor College Of Medicie (Press Release), January 27, 2006
A new cellular pathway leads to destruction of a protein that promotes growth of breast, prostate and similar cancers and could provide a new avenue through which to pursue treatment of such diseases, said a researcher at Baylor College of Medicine. "It is another intervention point where one can now attack tumors. It's especially important for endocrine tumors such as those of the breast, prostate, ovary and pituitary gland," said Dr. Bert O'Malley, chair of the BCM department of molecular and cellular biology. O'Malley is senior author of a report on the research that appears in the current issue of the journal Cell and a faculty member in the College's Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. O'Malley and his colleagues concentrated their efforts on a powerful oncogene or cancer-promoting gene called the steroid receptor coactivator (SRC) 3 which is also a powerful promoter of tumor growth. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Friday, January 27, 2006

BRCA1 Gene Found To Inhibit Both Estrogen And Progesterone

Georgetown University Medical Center, January 26, 2006
It’s been known that the breast cancer susceptibility gene BRCA1 regulates use of estrogen in breast and other cells, but now researchers at Georgetown University Medical Center have discovered that it also controls activity of a second sex steroid hormone, progesterone.
The findings, conducted in cell culture and in mice and reported by the researchers in the January issue of Molecular Endocrinology, could help explain why women who have mutations in their BRCA1 gene are susceptible to a number of different “hormone-dependent” cancers, including those of the breast, endometriun and cervix. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

UltraClinics(TM), Inc. Develops a Same Day Breast Cancer Diagnosis Process

MarketWire (Press Release), January 24, 2006
UltraClinics™, Inc., a telemedicine application service provider company based in Tucson, Arizona, and a spin-off company of the University of Arizona, has developed a process that drastically reduces the time it takes for breast care. During a single breast clinic visit, a woman can have a breast biopsy performed, receive a written laboratory report, and meet with a specialist by video-conferencing for breast cancer treatment planning, all in a single day. Previously, this multi-step process took anywhere from a week to over a month in many health care systems. With the UltraClinics™ patent-pending process, the on-site biopsy and tissue processing are completed in a few hours. The biopsy glass slides are electronically scanned into digital image files using a DMetrix virtual slide scanner. The DMetrix array-microscope technology has been honored as a breakthrough innovation by The Wall Street Journal. A telepathologist at a service center, which can be located at any location with secure Internet access, examines the virtual slides at a computer workstation and immediately generates a diagnosis. If the diagnosis is cancer, the woman consults with a breast cancer specialist by video conferencing for treatment planning. Same day second opinions will be available from a panel of expert specialists using telepathology. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

A new twist in finding hard to detect breast cancer

Dr. Jay Adlersberg, Seven Online, January 23, 2006
There's a new weapon in the fight against breast cancer. It's called 'Breast Specific Gamma Imaging." It doesn't replace mammography, but it does help spot cancers. Tests that find breast cancer early, the mammogram xray series and the MRI both have drawbacks. The mammogram sometimes misses cancers, and the MRI finds too many spots, some of which turn out not to be cancers. Now there's a new twist on an old technique, which is helping doctors find cancers when other tests fail. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Report Finds Half of Breast Cancer Causes May Be Environmental

Breast Cancer Action, January 24, 2006
Women in the United States still have a high risk of breast cancer even if they have no genetic predisposition or other commonly-accepted risk factors for the disease, according to a report released today. “State of the Evidence 2006: What Is the Connection Between the Environment and Breast Cancer?” reports that as many as 50 percent of breast cancer cases remain unexplained by either genetics or lifestyle factors, such as a woman’s age at her first full-term pregnancy or alcohol consumption. Instead, the report says, “compelling scientific evidence points to some of the 100,000 synthetic chemicals in use today as contributing to the development of breast cancer, either by altering hormone function or gene expression.” The report also identifies radiation exposure, such as that from X-rays and CT scans, as the “longest-established environmental cause of breast cancer.” “State of the Evidence 2006,” which reviews and analyzes nearly 350 scientific studies on environmental links to breast cancer, was jointly published by two San Francisco-based organizations, the Breast Cancer Fund and Breast Cancer Action. The report was peer-reviewed by leading scientists at the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, Tufts University School of Medicine, Columbia University and other research institutions. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

What went wrong with misread breast cancer scans?

The Times Online, January 24, 2006

What has happened?
A consultant radiologist working in two hospitals in Manchester made a series of mistaken breast cancer diagnoses during two years of screenings. Out of 2,500 screenings, 21 cases of invasive breast cancer were missed. Although four women were swiftly diagnosed, 17 women had their survival chances "significantly altered" by the delay.

What went wrong?
The two units where the mistakes occurred - Trafford General Hospital and North Manchester General - had only one radiologist checking screenings. In another hospital where the radiologist worked and where scans were double-checked, there were no reported errors in diagnoses. According to the hospitals involved there were no faults in the equipment used to carry out the screenings. An independent team will now examine exactly how the mistakes happened. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Monday, January 23, 2006

Endogenous Sex Hormones May Not Predict Breast Cancer Risk

Martha Kerr, The Cancer Page (via Reuters Health), January 23, 2006
The endogenous sex hormone levels of some women at high risk for breast cancer may paint a false picture of that risk, according to findings published in the January 18th issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute (Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2006;98:110-15). Lead investigator Dr. Mary S. Beattie of the University of California, San Francisco, and colleagues measured estradiol, testosterone and sex hormone-binding globulin in plasma samples taken from a study group of 135 women with postmenopausal breast cancer and 275 postmenopausal women without breast cancer who served as controls in the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project Cancer Prevention Trial. Women had received tamoxifen or placebo for 69 months. Median plasma levels of estradiol, testosterone and sex hormone-binding globulin were similar in study patients and controls. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Friday, January 20, 2006

"Room for improvement" in care after breast cancer - Survivors need their mamograms!

Reuters (via Journal of Clinical Oncology, January 2006), January 20, 2006
Survivors of early-stage breast cancer generally receive good health care in the first year after they finish treatment, but not all of them get the recommended check-up mammogram. Stage I or II breast cancer patients were asked to complete calendar diaries detailing health care use for one year after treatment. Of the 558 women recruited, 391 provided a health care diary. The researchers found that, on average, these survivors used health service 30 times in the year after treatment, a rate higher than that of the general population. Although all women should have a mammography in the first year after treatment, the researchers report that only 62 percent did so. Women who had a lumpectomy were more likely to receive a mammogram than those who had a mastectomy, and white women were more likely to receive one than nonwhite women. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Monday, January 16, 2006

Soy Phytoestrogens May Block Estrogen Effects

Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, January 16, 2005
Research in monkeys suggests that the natural plant estrogens found in soy do not increase markers of breast cancer risk in postmenopausal women. In fact, they may provide a protective effect in some women. The research is reported today in Cancer Research. "Even at high doses, we found no evidence that the estrogen-like compounds in soy, called isoflavones, stimulate cell growth or other markers for cancer risk in breast tissue," said Charles E. Wood, D.V.M., Ph.D., lead researcher, from Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center. "The study also suggests that women who have higher levels of estrogen may actually gain a protective effect from higher doses of soy isoflavones." --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Medicare Contractor Establishes Reimbursement Coverage Policy for Genomic Health's Oncotype DX(TM) Breast Cancer Test

PRNewswire, January 16, 2005
Genomic Health, Inc. (NASDAQ: GHDX) today announced that the National Heritage Insurance Company (NHIC), the contractor that administers Medicare programs in California, has established a positive coverage policy for the company's Oncotype DX(TM) breast cancer test, which quantifies the likelihood of breast cancer recurrence and predicts the likelihood of response to chemotherapy for a large portion of early-stage breast cancer patients. Medicare bills for Oncotype DX are currently billed through NHIC because the test is conducted by Genomic Health in its Redwood City, California clinical reference laboratory. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Obesity Has Adverse Impact On Breast Cancer Survival

MedIndia, January 15, 2005
Excess weight is not a good factor in patients with breast cancer and adversely affects the long term prognosis in the condition, a report published in the January 15 issue of the American Journal of Epidemiology has said. These findings from a Chinese study are identical to conclusions that were arrived at in several Western studies and ponit to the fact that obesity seems to be a hindrance to complete recovery from breast cancer. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Researchers discover protein fragment that helps predict breast cancer outcome

EurekAlert, January 15, 2006
Oregon Health & Science University Cancer Institute researchers have identified a protein fragment in some human breast cancers that may help predict a patient's chances of survival.
The presence of the fragment, called p95HER-2, in breast cancer tissue correlates closely with lymph node metastasis and earlier recurrence of the disease, suggesting that p95HER-2 is a marker and perhaps even involved in metastasis. "By studying this marker we have a better chance to identify the patients who are more likely to have a longer disease-free survival," said Edward Keenan, Ph.D., one of the authors of the study. Keenan is professor of physiology and pharmacology and associate dean for medical education, OHSU School of Medicine.

Mechanisms of estrogen in promoting cell death in breast cancer discovered

XagenaMedicine 2005
A laboratory study has uncovered new details about how estrogen can activate natural pathways that kill certain breast cancer cells or tumors. The results raise the possibility that estrogen therapy may overcome resistance to certain breast cancer hormonal therapies. The study is published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute. "These laboratory data have important clinical implications, particularly for the use of aromatase inhibitors as long-term therapy," write the authors, "and they suggest that, if and when resistance to aromatase inhibition occurs, a strategy of treatment with estrogen … may be sufficient to kill the cancer and control disease progression." --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Arimidex (Anastrozole) more effective than Tamoxifen for post-menopausal, early-stage ER+ Breast Cancer

XagenaMedicine (via AstraZeneca), January 10, 2005
Data presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium found that by replacing Tamoxifen with Arimidex (an aromatase inhibitor), postmenopausal women being treated for hormone-receptive, early breast cancer may almost halve the likelihood of their disease returning and reduce their risk of dying by nearly a third. "The ATAC trial has confirmed that starting treatment with Anastrozole at the earliest opportunity after surgery, and giving it for the full five years of treatment, is more effective than Tamoxifen for the prevention of disease recurrence. This would suggest that the best place to use Anastrozole is right from the start. These new data are important news for women currently taking Tamoxifen who can still gain from the significant benefits of anastrozole by switching at two years," commented Jeffrey Tobias of the University College London Hospitals, London ( UK ). --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Monday, January 09, 2006

Docs Test New Radiation for Breast Cancer

Forbes (via Associated Press), January 9, 2009
Radiation may get a little easier for thousands of breast cancer patients: Doctors now can target cancer-killing beams just at the tumor site instead of the whole breast, cutting the usual six-week treatment down to five days. A major study is under way to prove whether the easier therapy is as effective as the old-fashioned kind - and if so, who's a good candidate and which of three five-day methods works best. Even before those results are in, Canadian scientists are working to speed treatment still further. They've developed a one-day method, permanently implanting radiation seeds inside the breast to kill stray cancer cells while women go about their normal routines - just like men's prostate cancer can be treated today. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Cell Stress Protein Linked To Aggressive Breast Cancer

Northwestern University, January 4, 2006
A groundbreaking study led by Northwestern University researchers has demonstrated that a protein called alphaB-crystallin, which normally protects cells from stress damage, triggers events that may cause breast cancer when overactive. Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women and is responsible for over 400,000 deaths annually in women throughout the world. Most of these deaths are the result of aggressive breast tumors that often fail to respond to current treatments. The researchers found that women whose breast tumors express the alphaB-crystallin protein have a shorter survival, suggesting that alphaB-crystallin may be a useful molecular marker to identify women with aggressive breast cancer and to develop new targeted cancer therapies. The study was published in the January issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Can dogs ‘smell’ cancer? Yes, it is possible, says new research

NewIndPress, January 9, 2006
According to a study published in the journal Integrative Cancer Therapies, researchers at the Pine Street Foundation (California) and the Polish Academy of Sciences in (Warsaw) trained five ordinary dogs over a three-week period to detect lung or breast cancer by sniffing the breath of cancer participants. The trial was comprised of 86 cancer patients - 55 with lung cancer and 31 with breast cancer - and a control sample of 83 healthy patients. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Radiation Implants for Breast Cancer Patients

Ivanhoe Newswire, January 9, 2006
Doctors are now studying permanent radiation implants to treat breast cancer patients.
Women with early stage breast cancer often receive a lumpectomy to remove the tumor and then undergo external beam radiation to kill any remaining cancer cells. The radiation treatment is given five days a week, for six to eight weeks. Now, in a first-of-its-kind study out of Sunnybrook and Women's College Health Sciences Centre in Toronto, researchers are testing permanent radiation implants. The implants, called radiation seed implants, are about the size of a grain of rice and would not have to be removed daily like temporary implants recently tested. They would be surgically implanted one time only and would deliver radiation to the breast area until they were no longer radioactive. The procedure will reduce treatment time from several weeks to one day. Researchers say 44 patients have been treated successfully with no indication of the cancer returning and with six-times less acute skin irritation as compared to external beam radiation. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Fatigue hits breast cancer survivors

The Age, via the journal Cancer, January 9, 2006
A third of breast cancer survivors suffer from fatigue for up to 10 years after their initial diagnosis, according to a UCLA study. "Fatigue is recognised as one of the most common and distressing side effects of cancer and its treatment and it can significantly impact a woman's quality of life," said Julie Bowar, a researcher at UCLA's Jonsson Cancer Centre and the study's lead author. According to the study, published in the online edition of CANCER, a journal of the American Cancer Society, approximately 34 per cent of the 763 cancer patients surveyed reported significant fatigue at five to 10 years post diagnosis. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Coffee Consumption Reduces Breast Cancer Risk for Women With Genetic Mutation

Kaiser Network, January 4, 2006
Consumption of caffeinated coffee significantly reduces the risk of developing breast cancer among women who have a specific genetic mutation that greatly increases the chance of being diagnosed with the disease, according to a study published in the Jan. 1 edition of the International Journal of Cancer. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Stem Cell Breakthrough in Breast Cancer Research

The Age, January 5, 2006
researchers have taken a giant step towards understanding the genesis of breast cancer by inducing female mice to grow new mammary glands from stem cells. The breakthrough could open the way for the eventual development of new drugs or therapies to treat breast cancer — one of the biggest causes of premature death in women. The new hypothesis suggests cancerous cells descend directly from immortal precursor cells — stem cells and their "daughter" cells that continually renew the body's tissues and major organs throughout life. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

FDA clears Axxent Electronic Brachytherapy System for breast cancer

United Press International, January 4, 2006
The Axxent system uses non-radioactive sources to deliver radiation treatment, which eliminates the need for heavily shielded environments and may enable the therapy to be used in more clinical settings. "This may accelerate patient choice of breast sparing lumpectomy surgery with adjuvant radiation therapy over the alternative of a full mastectomy," Xoft said in a statement. "However, as important as the clinical benefits are, the true breakthrough may relate to easy and convenient access to non-radioactive brachytherapy for women who today opt for mastectomy or lumpectomy without radiation therapy," Dowlat added. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

New Products Are Expected to Be Introduced to the Cancer Vaccine Market over the Next Five Years

Genetic Engineering News, January 4, 2006
After years of promise, the cancer vaccine market is on the verge of huge growth - if it can overcome the clinical, regulatory and pharmacoeconomic obstacles. With a number of product launches expected over the next five years, this insightful market report takes a balanced view of the players and products that will shape this much awaited market sector. Even though more than half the 105 products in late-stage research will fail to make it to registration, the next five years will see a number of novel drug launches in a range of key cancers such as melanoma and those of the lung, breast and prostate. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Implant that gradually releases radiation therapy on way to being `standard'

Toronto Star, January 5, 2006
A simple one-hour radiation therapy for early-stage breast cancer is well on its way to becoming the standard of treatment in future, says its leading Toronto researcher. Forty-four women have successfully been given the treatment as outpatients at Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Centre and all of them remain cancer-free up to 20 months later. The research was published this week in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology, the official journal of the world's largest society of radiation oncologists, with 8,500 members. The treatment, a world first, could quickly become available for women in the United States because of the fact that funding is not an issue there, he said. But in Canada, the process of getting approval for a new treatment is "very rigorous" and can take up to five years. --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Women Who Undergo Reconstructive Breast Implantation Frequently Develop Sort-Term Complications

Journal of the American Medical Association, December 19, 2005
Almost one-third of women who underwent reconstructive breast implantation after mastectomy had at least one short-term complication in the chest or breast area, with one in five women requiring additional surgery, according to a study in the December issue of Archives of Surgery, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. "When evaluating benefits and risks associated with breast reconstruction, the surgeon and patient should consider that the reconstructive process often requires additional surgical interventions to treat local complications or to achieve the desired cosmetic result," the authors conclude. "Detailed information on the likelihood of local complications associated with the given indication (cosmetic vs. reconstructive) should be an essential part of adequate informed consent for women seeking breast implantation." --Click the title of this post to read the full article from its source--

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