Friday, February 25, 2011

Gallium Spoon

Bet he/she doesn't drink the water.


Friday, February 04, 2011

Cancer Carnival #42

Welcome to the 42nd edition of the Cancer Research Blog Carnival. The Carnival relies on posts and hosts, so be sure to submit your posts for next month, and if you're tired of seeing it here on the Bayblab, drop us a line to sign up as a host.

First off, is a pair of posts from the 23andMe blog, The Spittoon. The first reports on genetic variations associated with different prostate-specific antigen levels in men.
To further complicate matters, the major screening test for prostate cancer, the prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test, is imperfect. This test detects the levels of PSA, a protein produced by prostate cells, in the blood. Cancerous prostate cells generally produce more PSA than normal prostate cells, leading to higher blood levels of PSA. However, prostate cancer is not the only condition that can cause PSA levels to rise.
The post then describes a recent study describing genetic variants that can lead to different baseline PSA levels. The second post examines genetic variants associated with skin cancer.
A recent study in the journal Pigment Cell and Melanoma Research looked at variants linked to pigmentation (hair color, eye color, skin color), skin sensitivity to sun, and freckling and moles as they related to different types of skin cancer. They found that melanoma is associated with two different kinds of variants: those related to skin pigmentation and sensitivity to sun, and those related to the number and type of moles an individual has.
Next up, HighlightHEALTH describes peer-reviewed research suggesting that daily aspirin may reduce the risk of certain cancers.
It is old news that aspirin is good for your heart. But a recent report published in The Lancet, the premiere medical journal in the United Kingdom, claims that at least 75mg of aspirin every day can also reduce the risk of developing many different types of cancers.
The described study is a meta-analysis of 8 clinical trials, including over 25,000 patients.

Finally, Respectful Insolence has a post up discussing an FDA report on a link between breast implants and cancer. Orac takes a look at the actual evidence
In fact, the most significant risk due to breast implants is not the risk of systemic diseases, such as autoimmune diseases or cancer. Far more significant is the rate of local complications, such as capsular contracture or implant rupture. Due to such complications, many women with implants require reoperation. Indeed, reoperation rates have been estimated to be as low as 3% after seven years to as high as 20% over three years. These are by far the most significant risks due to breast implants.
Read the hole post for an analysis of the FDA report and the existing evidence of a cancer connection.

That's it for this month's Cancer Research Blog Carnival. For older editions, visit the Carnival Homepage. Don't forget, the CRBC has subscription options; you can follow by email or RSS feed. An aggregated feed of credible, rotating health and medicine blog carnivals is also available. For a broader collection of science-related blog carnivals, sign up for the Science, Medicine, Environment and Nature Blog Carnival Twitter Feed.