Online ISSN: 2331-4737

Oncoscience

Latest

Can cancer be diagnosed from a simple blood test measuring circulating tumor DNA?

January 12, 2018
What if cancer could be diagnosed from a simple blood test? The current standards of cancer diagnosis often involve invasive and painful biopsies, where doctors take a sample of tissue directly from a potentially cancerous tumor. These kinds of tests are very effective at determining whether or not a patient has cancer, but they have two major disadvantages: they are invasive and they are slow. It can sometimes take weeks to get results. A new approach to diagnosing cancer and guiding treatment focuses on the signs cancer leaves in the blood. Circulating tumor DNA is DNA that has broken free… continue reading »

How do doctors measure the advance of cancer?

January 4, 2018
When doctors want to measure the progression of cancer and provide patients with appropriate treatments, they often take a sample of a patient’s tissue for testing. This may sound simple, but when the tissue in question is in a patient’s bone marrow or brain, the process can become extremely invasive. Cancer researchers are searching for new methods to diagnose and monitor different levels of cancer, methods that do not have the same limitations as traditional tissue biopsy. Because retrieving them is an invasive process, tissue samples cannot be collected as frequently as is ideal. Developing less invasive, but no less… continue reading »

In cancer, DNA damage presents new treatment opportunities

December 22, 2017
In nearly every cancer, DNA damage is a key culprit. Damage to a cell’s genetic material is part of what leads to the rampant growth that characterizes cancer. Normal cells have genes that regulate the process of cell growth and the cell’s lifespan; when those genes are damaged, cells can sometimes replicate wildly. Studying the processes that protect against DNA damage in normal cells can provide insight into treating cells that have DNA damage—that is, cancer cells. In normal cells, DNA is protected by processes within the cell nucleus. If DNA does get damaged, the cell has genes and processes… continue reading »

Oncoscience

Latest

Groundbreaking Research Reveals New Target for Leukemia Treatment

December 7, 2017
Interrupting the communication between cells is a method of treating cancer. Recent research has identified two cell signaling processes that could be a new target for leukemia treatment. In a 2016 issue of Nature, researchers identified two specific factors that “read” the information in DNA—and use it to create the traits we can observe. These specific transcription factors are important to cell signaling in chronic myeloid leukemia, a rare blood cancer that begins in bone marrow. Disrupting that reading process may allow scientists to target and kill cancer cells. Professor Tessa Holyoake and colleagues from the Paul O’Gorman Leukaemia Research… continue reading »