Yale Study Identifies How Cancer Drug Inhibits DNA Repair in Cancer Cells
Yale Cancer Center researchers have found that a cancer drug thought to be of limited use possesses an unforeseen property. It is able to stop certain cancer cells from repairing their DNA in order to survive. The study suggests that combining this drug, cediranib, with other agents could potentially deliver a lethal blow in cancer that uses a specific process to create DNA repair cells.
YSPH Convenes Experts to Examine Alcohol’s Role in Cancer
Chronic alcohol abuse is considered to be an important risk factor for disease worldwide. In addition, alcohol and its metabolite, acetaldehyde, are recognized as carcinogens that contribute to four percent of cancer deaths. Although scientific studies began to show this association over 100 years ago, the role of alcohol in chronic diseases such as cancer is still not well understood by the public and medical professionals. The 4th International Conference on Alcohol and Cancer was organized by Vasilis Vasiliou, PhD, the Susan Dwight Bliss Professor of Epidemiology, sponsored by the Department of Environmental Health Sciences of the Yale School of Public Health, and supported by an R13 grant from the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA). The conference, held in Newport, R.I., brought together 75 international scholars with special interest in alcohol and/or cancer.
Antiretroviral Therapy Crucial in Preventing non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, YSPH Study Reinforces
A research team led by the Yale School of Public Health has found that for people living with HIV/AIDS, both recent immunosuppression and prolonged HIV viremia play important and independent roles in the development of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
Breaking it Down: How the Chemistry of Digestion is Uncovering Sex-Specific Causes of Colon Cancer
A new technology called metabolomics allows researchers to explore the small chemicals formed and used during digestion as a window into the formation of diseases such as colon cancer, seeking early warning signs and potent tactics for prevention.
Yale Cancer Researchers Suggest New Treatment for Rare Inherited Cancer
Studying two rare inherited cancer syndromes, Yale Cancer Center (YCC) scientists have found the cancers are driven by a breakdown in how cells repair their DNA. The discovery, published today in Nature Genetics, suggests a promising strategy for treatment with drugs recently approved for other forms of cancer.
Could even more cancer patients benefit from PARP inhibitors?
PARP inhibitors like AstraZeneca’s Lynparza and Tesaro’s Zejula have revolutionized the treatment of ovarian cancers with BRCA mutations and are starting to take off in breast cancer treatment too. But the way that these drugs work could make them applicable to many more cancer types, some oncology researchers believe. The latest evidence of that comes from Yale University, where a group of researchers have been investigating the potential of PARP inhibitors in two rare, inherited cancers: hereditary leiomyomatosis and renal cell cancer (HLRCC) and succinate dehydrogenase-related hereditary paraganglioma and pheochromocytoma (SDH PGL/PCC). Both tumor types share an “Achilles heel” that could make them vulnerable to PARP inhibition, they discovered.
Digestion Could Account for Differences in Colon Cancer Among Men, Women
Although women are less likely to develop colon cancer than men, they have higher rates of right-sided colon cancer, which is linked to worse outcomes since it is close in proximity to the small intestine. Colorectal cancer results in more than 50,000 people each year, and is a leading cause of death for both sexes. While this cancer is avoidable through a healthy diet, many Americans develop this cancer each year. A new study being conducted by the Yale Cancer Center suggests that digestion differences could result in sex disparities for colon cancer, according to a press release.
Can Digestive Chemistry Uncover Sex-Specific Causes of Colon Cancer?
Dr. Caroline Helen Johnson received this year’s Wendy U. and Thomas C. Naratil Pioneer Award and co-funding from the Yale Cancer Center to explore hormones and environmental factors related to metabolite production (such as sugars and amino acids) and beneficial bacteria that live in the colon as possible sources of gender difference.
Discovery about BRCA1 breast cancer gene opens possibility for new treatment options
It's been 20 years since the BRCA1 gene was found to predispose women to breast cancer, and researchers at Yale have pinpointed what about the gene's mutation leads to cancer. The team's findings, published Wednesday in the journal Nature, can lead to drugs designed to specifically target and fight breast and ovarian cancers. The discovery can also help doctors recognize female patients who are at a high risk of developing those cancers earlier, the study said. "There have been about 14,000 papers written about BRCA1, and you would think we already know everything about the gene, but we don't," Yale Cancer center professor Patrick Sung told the Yale News. "Defining the mechanism of the BRCA-dependent DNA repair pathway will help scientists design drugs to kill cancer cells more efficiently."
Yale study helps in understanding BRCA gene’s role in breast cancer
A mutation in one of two genes, BRCA1 and BRCA2, is a significant predictor of someone developing cancer, most notably breast cancer. However, little has been known about how BRCA performs its functions in the body’s cells. Now, a Yale University-led study has increased knowledge about how the BRCA genes repair DNA and suppress tumors and why their mutation poses such a threat. “They’re most well-known to be genes that prevent breast cancer, but they also suppress ovarian, prostate, pancreatic [cancer], and it goes on and on,” said Patrick Sung of the Yale Cancer Center, senior author of the paper published Wednesday in the journal Nature. “By the time a woman reaches the age of 70 there’s a one in eight, one in nine chance of a woman getting breast cancer. But if a woman has BRCA1 [mutation], the chance of getting breast cancer goes up to 80 percent.”
Mystery of breast cancer risk gene solved, 20 years after its discovery
More than 20 years after scientists revealed that mutations in the BRCA1 gene predispose women to breast cancer, Yale scientists have pinpointed the molecular mechanism that allows those mutations to wreak their havoc. The findings, reported Oct. 4 in the journal Nature, will not only help researchers design drugs to combat breast and ovarian cancers, but also help identify women who are at high risk of developing them, the authors say. “There have been about 14,000 papers written about BRCA1, and you would think we already know everything about the gene, but we don’t,” said senior author Patrick Sung, professor of molecular biophysics and biochemistry and of therapeutic radiology and member of the Yale Cancer Center.
Women’s Health Research at Yale funds studies on colon cancer, infections in pregnancy, and domestic violence
“Through our competitive peer review process, these three studies stood out as extremely promising opportunities to improve and even save lives,” said Dr. Carolyn M. Mazure, director of WHRY. “With these new grants, we continue to expand a broad scope of existing work to focus on questions vital to the health and well-being of millions of women, men, and children.”