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GU Relay For Life

Eivind and Hans of Eivind and Hans Salon of Georgetown with Carolyn Keller

EBeauty was a sponsor at this years Relay for Life at Georgetown University. As a sponsor, EBeauty distributed bottled water and hand towels to walkers throughout the night. Eivind and Hans were also there cutting hair for anyone who wanted to donate to cancer patients. EBeauty was of course accepting wig donations.

Before the Relay began, Carolyn Keller, President and CEO, said a few words about how EBeauty started and her experiences as a two time survivor.

This year’s Georgetown University’s Relay for Life raised over $157,000 with the top team Hoya Blue raising over $12,000. The event had a $400,000 goal. Since 2006, Georgetown has raised over $1.5 million for the American Cancer Society.

What exactly is Relay? Relay for Life is an overnight event in which teams of people take turns walking around a track in efforts to raise awareness and donations for the American Cancer Society.

Georgetown Students wearing EBeauty Hats

The idea behind the Relay for Life is that “One person can make a difference.” Here’s a little back story to Relay for Life. In the mid-1980‘s, Dr. Gordy Platt, with a desire to support his cancer patients, circled a track in Tacoma for 24 hours. In just those 24 hours, Dr. Platt raised $27,000 to fight cancer. The success of this event inspired the first Relay for Life in 1986.

Why do Hoyas relay? Hoyas relay for loved ones. Hoyas relay for survivors. Hoyas relay for less cancer. Hoyas relay for more birthdays. Because imagine what it’s like to hear the words, “you have cancer.” Listen to these stories and CELEBRATE, REMEMBER and FIGHT BACK.

Read More at The Hoya.

Can Heavy Metals in Foods and Cosmetics Spur the Spread of Breast Cancer?

Prolonged exposure to low levels of the heavy metal cadmium may fuel the growth of some breast cancer cells and encourage them to spread, preliminary research indicates.

Found in many farm fertilizers, cadmium can make its way into soil and water. Some other main sources of cadmium include cigarette smoke, rechargeable batteries, certain cosmetics, bread and other cereals, potatoes, root crops and vegetables. Once it enters the body, cadmium may mimic the effects of the female hormone estrogen.

Unlike previous research, this new analysis looks at lifetime exposure to cadmium, not acute bursts of high levels of the heavy metal.

This research is still in its infancy, explained study author Maggie Louie, an associate professor of biochemistry at the Dominican University of California, in San Rafael.

“We are trying to figure out if it is the cadmium causing cancer or the cancer attracting the cadmium,” she said. “If it is chronic exposure to cadmium that increases breast cancer risk, being aware of other exposures to estrogen and taking steps to minimize these exposures may become important.”

Read more at Philly. 

Fatigue After Early Breast Cancer Often Fades

Many people treated for cancer are worn out for a time, but new findings suggest that long-lasting fatigue may be less common than thought — at least for women with early-stage breast cancer.

The study, of 218 women treated for early breast cancer, found that almost one-third had “cancer-related fatigue” at the end of treatment. But far fewer — six percent — still had the problem a year later.

That suggests for most women with the disease post-treatment fatigue will fade with some time, the researchers report in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

It’s well known that cancer patients often suffer fatigue. And some studies have concluded it’s common for that weariness to last for years after treatment ends. Among breast cancer survivors, researchers have found that more than one-third have fatigue two to three years after treatment.

The reasons, though, have not been clear. And the new findings support the idea that some cases of chronic fatigue in earlier studies may have had causes other than the cancer itself.

Read more at Fox News.

Closer to a Cure?

A new study discovered a type of mutation in breast cancer which could help lead to the development of new drugs to treat the devastating disease.

Mayo Clinic researchers found a class of molecular mutations called fusion transcripts which originated in forms of RNA and may also provide a way to identify tumor subtypes and a way to treat them.

Oncologists currently recognize three basic types of breast tumors estrogen-receptor (ER)-positive, HER2-positive, and triple negative.

“But breast cancer is much more complex than indicated by these three subtypes, and one of the challenges of treating the disease is to identify gene markers that predict how a tumor will respond to a specific treatment,” Edith Perez, M.D.,senior investigator, was quoted as saying. “The discovery of subtype-specific fusion transcripts in breast cancer represents a step in this direction,” she said. “Our findings indicate that fusion transcripts are much more common in breast cancer than had been realized. They represent a new class of mutation whose role in breast cancer is not understood at all.”

“Fusion transcripts have the power to produce proteins that are relevant to tumor development, growth, and sensitivity to treatment, so we may have a brand new set of genomic changes that may help us understand, and treat, breast cancer in a new way,” E. Aubrey Thompson, Ph.D., professor of Biology at Mayo Clinic’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, and co-director of the Breast Cancer Translational Genomics Program, was quoted as saying.

Read more at Ivanhoe.

Three Breast Cancer Survivors Make Fitness a Top Priority

There’s no guaranteed way to prevent breast cancer, but exercising and staying lean and avoiding obesity and weight gain are some of the best strategies for reducing the risk. Lu-Ann Doria works with her trainer Laura Tiedge (Certified Livestrong Trainer) at a YMCA in Rye, N.Y.

Doria began working out for the first time three years ago, after recovering from breast cancer therapy. At first, she was so fatigued she had to nap before dance class. Now, she is exercising five days a week.“I feel like I can do things; before, I was talking myself out of things,” says Doria, who works with Tiedge at the YMCA through a joint program with Livestrong for cancer survivors.Researchers have known for years that people who are active and trim are less likely to develop cancer. And survivors like Lu-Ann Doria, who exercise and keep a healthy weight, are less likely to relapse.

Breast cancer survivor Laurens Flanagan, 36, of Greenville, S.C., has made a number of lifestyle changes since having a mastectomy at age 29. One way she stays fit is by cycling long distances. She is shown here cycling along the Jackrabbit Trail near Linky Stone Park in Greenville.“If I can eat better and exercise and keep my weight down, I feel better,” Flanagan says. “I’ve spent a lot of time thinking, ‘What if my cancer comes back?’ Now, I think, ‘If my cancer comes back, I’ll just beat it again.’”Flanagan cycles frequently to stay active and healthy, and also helps organize the Lance Armstrong Foundation team in Greenville to raise money for cancer research.

Read More at USA TODAY.

Spider Venom Could Lead To Breast Cancer Cure

Australian scientists are studying spider venom with the hope it could hold the key to curing breast cancer.

James Cook University (JCU) Professor Norelle Daly has received a $205,000 research grant from the National Breast Cancer Foundation to analyze whether the venom of tarantulas and funnel web spiders can kill breast cancer cells.

“Spider venom could hold great potential,” said the biochemist, who joined JCU last month. “This is early days and we’re doing preliminary research that we hope will go somewhere.”

Daly will test her theory in the lab by isolating the hundreds of molecules in spider venom and exposing them to cancer cells to see how they react.

She hopes the complex mix of molecules in the venom could offer a solution to breast cancer treatment.

“What we would hope to find is a molecule that looks promising in killing the cells,” Daly said. “You would like to see that you could prevent the cancer from spreading and remove it as well.”

Read more at Fox News

Meditation-based class boosts breast cancer patients’ physical, emotional health, study shows

A new study of breast cancer patients who used a meditation-based approach to stress reduction found a significant boost in their physical and emotional well-being.

The study, published March 19 in theJournal of Clinical Oncology, is the latest in a series of reports on mindfulness based stress reduction, a technique developed by Jon Katat-Zinn at the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

The study of breast cancer patients was conducted by researchers at the Haven Breast Cancer Support Centres in London. They found that patients who took the eight-week class showed statistically significant improvements in physical and emotional well-being.

They reported a better overall mood and less depression, anxiety, fatigue and confusion than the women who did not take the class.

The research shows how mindfulness can affect the body-mind connection, providing physical and emotional benefits, said Carol Hendershot, co-founder for the Grand Rapids Center for Mindfulness.

In another study, Richard Davidson, a University of Wisconsin researcher, measured changes in brain and immune function in people who learned mindfulness based stress reduction.


Blocking “Don’t Eat Me” Signal on Cancer Cells Lets Phagocytes Clean Up

Scientists hope clinical trials with a new therapeutic anticancer antibody could start within the next couple of years, after studies in mice showed that the treatment dramatically shrinks—and in some cases completely eliminates—a wide range of human solid tumor types. A Stanford University Medical Center-led team has expanded on work suggesting that expression of CD47 on the surface of tumor cells acts as a “don’t eat me” signal protecting them from engulfment by phagocytic cells. Their latest studies showed that using a tumor-targeting monoclonal antibody to block CD47 on the surface of cancer cells effectively removes this immunity to phagocytosis, both in vitro and in mice carrying different types of human tumors.

In vivo studies showed that when antibody therapy was started early after engraftment of tumor cells in mice, the treated animals were protected against tumor development, and remained tumor-free even after antibody therapy was withdrawn. When the antibody was administered to animals with already evident tumors, further growth of the cancer was halted, and metastasis prevented.

Importantly, the investigators also found that human patients whose tumors expressed higher levels of CD47 had poorer survival. Irving L. Weissman, M.D., and colleagues report their findings in PNAS, in a paper titled “The CD47-signal regulatory protein alpha (SIRPα) interaction is a therapeutic target for human solid tumors.”

Evidence indicates that cell surface expression of CD47 represents a common mechanism by which cells protect themselves against phagocytosis. For example, the researchers report, CD47 expression is required to protect transfused red blood cells, platelets, and lymphocytes from rapid elimination by splenic macrophages. The transmembrane protein acts as a ligand for signal regulatory protein-α (SIRPα), which is expressed on macrophages and dendritic cells. Binding of CD47 to SIRPα triggers a signaling cascade that stops the CD47-expressing cells from being phagocytosed.

Read More at Gene NG News

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