Thursday, July 17, 2014

Around the Web

I've about recovered from the beating my body took last weekend. I admit I haven't been monitoring the headlines as closely as usual between walking almost forty miles and traveling with a toddler. But here's what caught my attention on the web last week.

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Researching targets for triple negative breast cancers

"If her approach is successful, we may have a new way to deliver drugs with precision: not just to cancer cells, but to any type of diseased cell or organ with a distinctive pattern of proteins on the surface."

And some not-so-great news from the clinical trial world.

"The long-awaited results showed that adding lapatinib [Tykerb] to adjuvant trastuzumab [Herceptin], either concurrently or sequentially, does not increase disease-free survival compared with use of trastuzumab alone in women with early-stage HER2-positive breast cancer."

We may someday be able to predict who will benefit from Tamoxifen. . .

. . . eliminating unnecessary side effects for so many women.

"A gene signature identified using a new approach has the potential to be used in the clinic to predict which patients with estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer will benefit from tamoxifen therapy after surgery, according to data published in Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research."

And what if we eliminate hormone receptors altogether?

New developments for treating estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer from one of my favorite companies, Genentech.

More research suggesting we are overdoing it with mastectomies

"'Most patients have very minimal increases in life expectancy, one to seven months," Tuttle said. And that difference was spread over two or more decades, especially in the younger women, he said."

No regrets here.

Finally, are antioxidants harmful to cancer patients? 

Let the conversation begin (or continue). When I was seeing my naturopath regularly, he suggested I have infusions of Vitamin C to combat cancer growth, but my oncologist strongly advised against it. I went with my oncologist, and now I'm rethinking the supplement I add to my occasional morning smoothie, too. Do you take supplements? What are your thoughts on antioxidants? Does this study change your mind at all?

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