Ramunas from cancer-genetics.com offers us a one-two punch of articles on cancer genetics. First off, he offers a round-up of diagnostic and prognostic genetic markers for cancer. He writes:
"2007 will be known in history as a breakthrough in understanding of our genome variation and enormous success in genome wide association studies (GWAS) for complex disorders) cancer included.It's a nice summary of commercially available tests, as well as a hint of what's to come.
2008 will be definitely an exciting journey through a highway (yet in a desert) of personalized genomics."
He follows this up with an even more recent list of new tumour markers and targets. Hot off the presses for 2008, these are molecules that we may see in future diagnostic tests or as therapeutic drug targets.
Our very own Rob here at the Bayblab informs us about p53 and microRNAs: an unholy alliance between one of the hottest topics in biology and everybody's favourite tumour suppressor.
"So the question was if p53 has all these important cellular functions how much of that can be attributed to the microRNAs transcribed by activated p53? As it turns out quite a bit."
The small RNA involved is miR-34 whose expression is decreased in a variety of cancers. Check the link for more details.
Ryan DuBois at The Daily Dub gives us a brief overview of HeLa cervical cancer cells and their 1991 designation as their own species, Helacyton gartleri. He uses this as a recent, obvservable example of evolution in action.
Jose DeJesus from Physician Entrepreneur tells us about the use of stem cells in breast reconstruction.
"Current treatments for breast cancer include lumpectomy and radiation treatment, which are more conservative than mastectomy and reconstruction with an implant, but these more conservative approaches may result in deformity that is harder to reconstruct, because the use of mini-implants to replace tissue removed in lumpectomies are not a normal procedure."As discussed in a previous carnival drastic changes in appearance are one of the emotional issues faced by survivors post-treatment. This new technique using stem cell enhanced grafts may lead to more natural breast reconstructions post-surgery, as well as other reconstructive surgeries.
Kate and gregre write to inform us of a resource for people interested in mesothelioma - an aggressive cancer caused primarily by the inhalation of asbestos fibres. In particular, they highlight how to find a good mesothelioma specialist, disease prognosis once diagnosed, and asbestosis.
Steve Pavlina writes to us with his personal experience switching to a vegan diet: how he did it, and what the effects have been.
" I read that vegetarians supposedly live longer, need less sleep, and have lower risks of many major illnesses like cancer and heart disease. That sounded attractive..."The article doesn't discuss the relationship between diet and cancer any further than that, but it does chronicle a change from omnivore to vegetarian to vegan for any who are interested in making a similar lifestyle choice.
In a similar vein, Roger Haeske's
"If you feel excited and motivated to go raw, it will be easy. If you feel it's going to be difficult and painful then you will likely fail in your attempts to go raw and stay raw. Maybe reading these points below will help to motivate you to go raw with a little bit of help from your friend Roger."
Mitch McDonald writes to us about natural alternatives to chemotherapy further linking to a site called 'ChemotherapyKill.com'.
"Your first instinct is to listen to everything your doctor says. But you need to seek a second opinion if he says chemotherapy."And you need a third opinion if you're being directed to untested, unproven natural products. In typical fashion, there's a lot of fear-mongering, no real alternatives presented and a complete failure to recognize that some chemotherapeutics (taxol) ARE natural compounds. Chemotherapeutic treatment isn't something anybody looks forward to, but as this site demonstrates 'natural alternatives' are lacking.
Postscript: As I mentioned before, the nature of submissions was quite varied. I decided, for better or worse, to include them all regardless of quality or relevance (with a certain degree of editorializing in the descriptions). However, since this is a cancer blog carnival, if I'm writing up future editions I'll be more selective of stories relating to cancer and cancer research and exclude those that are unrelated, obviously marketing a product or of other dubious merit.