Archive for September, 2011

Prostate cancer linked to eggs, say researchers

September 30, 2011

SCIENTISTS believe they have found a clear link between eggs and prostate cancer. Researchers say men who consume three eggs a week could be 81% more likely to develop the condition. On average British people have three-and-a-half eggs each week.  Experts think the damage may be done by the high amounts of cholesterol or a nutrient called choline which are found in the food.

The report by the researchers said: “Men who consumed two-and-a-half eggs or more a week had an 81% increased risk of lethal prostate cancer compared to men who consumed less than half an egg a week. Although additional studies are needed, caution in egg intake may be warranted for adult men.” Read more…


Does gender matter in colon cancer screening ?

September 29, 2011

Middle-aged men are twice as likely as women to end up with a cancer diagnosis after a colonoscopy, according to  study that challenges current screening guidelines. Currently, people at average risk of colon cancer start screening for the disease at age 50, regardless of gender. The study found that around 80 55-year-old men would need to undergo colonoscopies to spot one cancer, with the same true for 65-year-old women. The same logic held for the pre-cancerous growths called advanced adenomas, which doctors also look for during colonoscopies.

About one in 19 men develops colon cancer at some point and slightly fewer women do. The disease, which usually strikes older adults, is the third leading cause of cancer deaths. At 0.8 percent, the rate of colon cancer among men aged 50 to 54, for instance, was twice that found among women in the same age group. That means 125 men would need to have a colonscopy to find one tumor, versus 264 women. Read more…


Chemotherapy appears safe in pregnancy: study

September 28, 2011

Treating pregnant cancer patients with powerful chemotherapy drugs appears not to harm their unborn children, but pre-term delivery to avoid subjecting them to chemotherapy does, according to a study. Scientists who studied the health and mental development of children born to mothers treated for cancer in pregnancy found they were not affected by chemotherapy, but were harmed if they were born prematurely, either naturally or by induction.

Results presented at meetings are usually considered preliminary, he said the data show there is no need for pregnant cancer patients to have abortions or delay chemotherapy treatment beyond the first trimester, but stressed that doctors should avoid inducing early birth if at all possible. An estimated 2,500 to 5,000 pregnant women in Europe are diagnosed with cancer each year — a diagnosis that is doubly traumatic as mothers-to-be worry that either the disease or the treatment could harm their unborn child. Read more…


Prostate Cancer Pill Brings Hope

September 27, 2011

Abiraterone acetate, which is being sold under the trade name “Zytiga”, has been discovered to be very effective on those in the advanced stages of prostate cancer.  The drug which was developed works by blocking testosterone production in all tissues, including cancerous ones. Incidentally, testosterone (male sex hormone) triggers the growth and spread of prostate cancer.

The prostate gland is part of the male reproductive system and is situated near the urinary bladder. Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men. The cancer can be easily identified by a simple blood test for PSA (prostate specific antigen), which is a prostate cancer marker. The levels of PSA are elevated in those with prostate cancer. Read more…

Drug for prostate cancer coming soon?

September 26, 2011

A new drug is offering fresh hope for people with advanced prostate cancer, as early results of its trial showed it can prolong survival significantly. Patients who were given the new drug called Radium-223 Chloride – known as Alpharadin TM – found that it eased pain and caused minor side effects.

It was found targeting tumours accurately using alpha radiation, which doctors conducting the study said is the most effective form of radiation to eliminate cancer because it limits damage to surrounding tissue.  Read more…


Cancer protein’s surprising role as memory regulator

September 24, 2011

Scientists have found that a key cancer protein could help regulates memory formation – a finding that could pave the way for Alzheimer’s disease treatment. Cyclin E is a well-known culprit that drives many types of solid tumors and blood cancers. The study is the first revelation that cyclin E has a crucial role in the formation of nerve connections, or synapses, in the brain.

The researchers found potential evidence linking cyclin E to Alzheimer’s disease, because it binds to an enzyme called Cdk5 that is involved in memory.Many types of cancer cells, including breast, ovarian, colon, and blood cancers, are driven by the overexpression of cyclin E, which acts like a car’s accelerator pressed to the floor, speeding the cells through their growth-and-division cycle and allowing tumors to form and spread.

In the current study, co-lead author Junko Odajima, PhD, a postdoctoral fellow in the Sicinski laboratory, showed that cyclin E in the brain attaches itself to the Cdk5 enzyme. When cyclin E molecules bind to and inactive Cdk5, synapses formation is increased, and, presumably, memory function improves. Read more…


Breast cancer: Symptoms, prevention & treatmen

September 23, 2011

Breast cancer is one of the most common cancers worldwide. Alarmingly, the incidence of breast cancer is rising rapidly in India, pushing cervical cancer to the second spot. Cancer is the uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body. Breast cancer is a cancer that starts in the tissues of the breast. It can occur either in the ducts that move milk from the breasts to the nipples or in the tissue where the milk is formed. Breast cancer is curable and the chances of the success of the treatment shoot up if the detection of the same happens in the early stages. For this, the symptoms must be thoroughly examined.

– Painless swelling (lump) in the breast or the armpit region
– Nipple retraction
– Nipple discharge
– Change in size and shape of the breast and the nipples
– Change in the look of the skin surrounding the nipples and the breast region, looking reddish in colour

Prevention of breast cancer 
Self-examinations are important, once a month, to check the presence of any lump formation and in case any lumps or abnormatlities are found a doctor should be consulted immediately. Also a woman must undertake yearly mammogram X-rays after the age of 40. However, if there is a family history, then the mammogram is better done from the age of 35. It is believed that a mammogram can detect breast cancer at least three years before it can be palpable by clinical examination. In case of females with dense breasts, MRI should be preferred over mammogram.

Diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer 
After the diagnosis, the treatment of the same depends on many factors which include the type and stage of the cancer and also if the cancer cells in the breast have affected other body parts as well. With the advent of multimodality treatment, it is now possible to conserve the affected breast in majority of cases. Read more…  

Lung cancer linked to risk of stroke

September 22, 2011

People recently diagnosed with lung cancer are at higher risk of having a stroke than those without lung tumors, suggests a large new study. Researchers looking at data covering more than 150,000 adults found that among those with lung cancer, 26 in every 1000 experienced a stroke each year, compared with 17 in 1000 who did not have cancer.

It is also found that a less common type of stroke — hemorrhagic stroke, caused by sudden bleeding into the brain — occurred more often among the lung cancer patients than ischemic stroke, which is usually caused by a clot blocking blood flow to brain tissue. Some evidence suggests that excessive bleeding and blood clots, both of which can be caused by tumors, as well as chemotherapy side effects, could partly explain the apparent link between cancer and stroke, researchers note. Read more…

Cancer feeds on stress.

September 20, 2011

Scientists have discovered a link between stress and the growth and spread of cancer. Published in the online edition of the prestigious International Journal of Cancer. The researchers found that a neurotransmitter – neuropeptide Y or NPY – released in response to stress, accelerates cell growth and cell migration. The spread of cancer cells from the breast to other parts of the body makes the disease lethal.

In their research, Jackson and Medeiros looked at a branch of the nervous system known as the sympathetic nervous system. When it’s activated during stress, the sympathetic system communicates with cells through the release of neurotransmitters, including NPY. They looked specifically at breast cancer because the female breast has a high density of sympathetic nerves. Read more…

Cervical cancer has more rural victims

September 19, 2011

For every one lakh women in the state, 20 are diagnosed with cervical cancer. The figures may not be shocking but doctors are seeing a pattern in the dreaded disease — rural women are more prone than their urban counterparts. Cervical cancer — a type of cancer which occurs when abnormal cells on the cervix (lower part of the uterus) — hits women in the age group of late 20s to early 40s.

“Hygiene factor and lifestyle are two key reasons behind rural women being more vulnerable to this form of the ailment. Good news is that rate of cervical cancer is slowly going down in India,” says Dr Moni Kurikose, director of surgical oncology, at the Mazumdar-Shaw Cancer Center. Read more…