Tag Archives: lung cancer

Drug-resistant lung cancer may have Achilles heel

Drugs introduced more than a decade ago that target mutations in a protein known as the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) held the promise of personalized treatments for a common form of non-small cell lung cancer. But most patients quickly develop resistance to these drugs and are left with few or no treatment options, because it has been very difficult to design new drugs that act selectively upon the drug-resistant form.  (more…)

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Experimental drug shows encouraging results in treating most common form of lung cancer

An experimental cancer drug that has shown promise in the treatment of melanoma has also shown early potential as an effective treatment for patients with non-small cell lung cancer, the leading cause of cancer death among men and women worldwide.

Dr. Edward Garon, director of thoracic oncology at UCLA’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, presented the preliminary results of a Phase 1B study of the new drug, called MK-3475, on Oct. 29 at the World Conference on Lung Cancer in Sydney, Australia. (more…)

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Old Habits Die Hard: Helping Cancer Patients Stop Smoking

ANN ARBOR — It’s a sad but familiar scene near the grounds of many medical campuses: hospital-gowned patients, some toting rolling IV poles, huddled in clumps under bus shelters or warming areas, smoking cigarettes.

Smoking causes 30 percent of all cancer deaths and 87 percent of all lung cancer deaths. Yet, roughly 50 percent to 83 percent of cancer patients keep smoking after a cancer diagnosis, through treatment and beyond, says Sonia Duffy, University of Michigan School of Nursing researcher. For patients who quit on their own, relapse rates (as in the general population) are as high as 85 percent. (more…)

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SBRT Can Be a Lifesaver for the Right Patients

Radiation delivered in high doses with pinpoint precision is becoming a useful tool for some patients who are otherwise running out of options.

Roy Decker, MD, PhD, keeps a photograph in his desk drawer of a woman in her 80s with the horse she still loves to ride. It’s a testament to life after lung cancer.

In 2008, doctors told the woman she was not a candidate for surgery and there was nothing else they could do. Then she found her way to Yale and became one of the first patients here to be treated with stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT), which delivers high doses of radiation with pinpoint precision. Just a few treatments wiped away her disease. (more…)

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Surgical Treatment for Epilepsy Should Not be Viewed As a Last Resort, Study Shows

*Most patients wait until it’s too late to prevent serious disability*

While the thought of any type of surgery can be disconcerting, the thought of brain surgery can be downright frightening. But for people with a particular form of epilepsy, surgical intervention can literally be life-restoring.

Yet among people who suffer from what’s known as medically intractable epilepsy, in which seizures are resistant to drugs, only a small fraction will seek surgery, seeing it only as a last resort. As a result, they continue to suffer seizures year after year. They can’t drive, they can’t work and they lose cognitive function as the years pass. Premature death is not uncommon. (more…)

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Nurses Key in Helping New Cancer Patients Overcome Fears

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Often faced with overwhelming anxiety, patients newly diagnosed with lung cancer can find themselves in distress, and new research recommends nurses play a key role in alleviating concerns, leading to a better quality of life for patients.

A diagnosis of lung cancer – the leading cause of cancer death in the United States – brings with it high levels of stress and raises existential issues and death-related thoughts and concerns in patients, said Rebecca H. Lehto, assistant professor in the College of Nursing at Michigan State University. (more…)

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Researchers Do Precise Gene Therapy Without A Needle

COLUMBUS, Ohio – For the first time, researchers have found a way to inject a precise dose of a gene therapy agent directly into a single living cell without a needle.

The technique uses electricity to “shoot” bits of therapeutic biomolecules through a tiny channel and into a cell in a fraction of a second.

L. James Lee and his colleagues at Ohio State University describe the technique in the online edition of the journal Nature Nanotechnology, where they report successfully inserting specific doses of an anti-cancer gene into individual leukemia cells to kill them. (more…)

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