Study finds risk of leukemia higher than expected in children with Down syndrome

The risk of childhood leukemia among kids with Down syndrome is higher than predicted, according to a new study led by UC Davis and UC San Francisco researchers. Early diagnosis remains critical.

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Dr. Mohamad Cherry of Atlantic Health System Presents Studies at Top International Blood Cancer Meeting

Dr. Cherry focused on results from a Juno Therapeutics phase 2 study of liso-cel, an investigational CAR T therapy being tested against aggressive relapsed/refractory B cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. Early results indicate a good safety profile, with few adverse events reported. Dr. Cherry also presented on the final results of a phase 1 study of targeted therapy gilteritinib in newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia (AML). Gilteritinib targets the most common mutation that causes AML, the FLT3 gene. Gilteritinib is sold under the brand name Xospata® by Astellas Pharma.

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Researchers Discover Mechanism to Overcome Drug-Resistance in B-Cell Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

In a new study led by Yale Cancer Center, researchers have discovered a novel metabolic gatekeeper mechanism for leukemia. This mechanism depends on a molecule called PON2, which could lead to a new treatment for the disease. The findings were published online today in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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Two Anti-viral Enzymes Transform Pre-Leukemia Stem Cells into Leukemia

Viral infections and space travel similarly trigger inflammation and the enzymes APOBEC3C and ADAR1; UC San Diego researchers are developing ways to inhibit them as a means to potentially lower cancer risk for both astronauts and people on Earth.

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Scientists Recruit New Atomic Heavyweights in Targeted Fight Against Cancer

Researchers from Berkeley Lab and Los Alamos National Laboratory have developed new methods for the large-scale production, purification, and use of the radioisotope cerium-134, which could serve as a PET imaging radiotracer for a highly targeted cancer treatment known as alpha-particle therapy.

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Dana-Farber to present more than 40 research studies at 2020 ASH Annual Meeting

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researchers will present more than 40 research studies at the virtual 62nd American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting on December 5-8, including two studies that were selected for inclusion in the official press program.

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NUS researchers target ‘undercover’ gene that helps cancer cells proliferate

Researchers from the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore at the National University of Singapore found that little-known genes called “onco-requisite factors” can enlist other genes to assist them in helping cancer cells proliferate. The gene produces an enzyme called aldehyde dehydrogenase that recruits other enzymes to supply cancer cells with energy for growth. As such, depriving cells of aldehyde dehydrogenase may be a possible way to treat cancer.

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Young survivors of acute myeloid leukemia have long-term complications from treatment

Adolescent and young adult (AYA) patients treated for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) have a high risk of developing several long-term health complications after treatment, a study led by UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers has found. The most common complications were cardiovascular, endocrine and respiratory diseases. The complications – known as late effects – were more present among non-white AYA patients and those living in more deprived neighborhoods.

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James K. McCloskey II, MD, Named Division Chief of the Division of Leukemia At Hackensack University Medical Center’s John Theurer Cancer Center

James K. McCloskey II, MD, was named division chief of the division of Leukemia at Hackensack Meridian John Theurer Cancer Center, part of Hackensack University Medical Center (JTCC). Dr. McCloskey previously served as the interim chief for the Division of Leukemia and will continue in his role as director for the Program for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms at John Theurer Cancer Center.

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Scientists kill cancer cells by “shutting the door” to the nucleus

Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute have shown that blocking the construction of nuclear pores complexes—large channels that control the flow of materials in and out of the cell nucleus—shrank aggressive tumors in mice while leaving healthy cells unharmed. The study, published in Cancer Discovery, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research, reveals a new Achilles heel for cancer that may lead to better treatments for deadly tumors such as melanoma, leukemia and colorectal cancer.

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New NCCN Resource for Understanding Childhood Leukemia

NCCN publishes a new patient and caregiver resource focused on a childhood cancer type. Free NCCN Guidelines for Patients: Pediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia (ALL) shares the latest expert advice for treating infants, children, and adolescents with the most common pediatric malignancy.

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MD Anderson and Astex Pharmaceuticals announce strategic collaboration to accelerate clinical evaluation of therapies for patients with leukemia

MD Anderson News Release September 08, 2020 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and Astex Pharmaceuticals, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Otsuka Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd., based in Tokyo, Japan, today announce a  strategic collaboration agreement aimed at accelerating the clinical evaluation of Astex’s pipeline of products for patients with certain types of leukemia, including myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS), chronic myelomonocytic leukemia (CMML) and acute myeloid leukemia (AML).

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New Insights Into Why People With Down Syndrome Are At Higher Risk For Leukemia

Scientists from Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago were the first to examine endothelial cells – one of the main sources of blood production – for clues as to why people with Down syndrome have higher prevalence of leukemia. They identified a new set of genes that are overexpressed in endothelial cells of patients with Down syndrome. This creates an environment conducive to leukemia, which is characterized by uncontrolled development and growth of blood cells. Their findings, published in the journal Oncotarget, point to new potential targets for treatment and possibly prevention of leukemia, in people with Down syndrome and in the general population.

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$500,000 gift supports worldwide effort to harness pediatric cancer data to advance treatment for children

Family looks to the ‘bright side’ by creating a charity to support pediatric cancer research and providing UChicago Medicine Comer Children’s Hospital with $500,000 gift.

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NCCN Meeting on Blood Cancers Will Be Virtual for the First Time

The NCCN Virtual Nursing Forum and Annual Congress: Hematologic Malignancies (#NCCNhem2020) will provide the latest evidence and expert consensus on emerging practices and debates in blood cancer treatment, online October 8-10.

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Combination therapy significantly improves survival outcomes for patients with acute myeloid leukemia

A combination regimen of venetoclax and azacitidine was safe and improved overall survival (OS) over azacitidine alone in certain patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML), according to the Phase III VIALE-A trial led by The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

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Understanding ‘Chemo Brain’ in Children: Researchers Secure $4.6 Million NIH Grant to Identify Those at Risk

Chemotherapy usually cures children diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), but the treatment may hamper brain development and impact key cognitive functions including sensory processing, memory, and attention. Researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Children’s Hospital at Montefiore (CHAM), and Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey have received a five-year, $4.6 million grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to determine how chemotherapy exerts its damaging effects on the brain. Their long-term objective is to use this information to develop protective interventions that can prevent permanent harm.

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2 immunotherapies merged into single, more effective treatment

Researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis have combined two immunotherapy strategies into a single therapy and found, in studies in human cells and in mice, that the two together are more effective than either alone in treating certain blood cancers, such as leukemia.

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Discovery in Acute Myeloid Leukemia Could Provide Novel Pathway for New Treatments

Researchers at Mount Sinai have discovered that human acute myeloid leukemia (AML) stem cells are dependent on a transcription factor known as RUNX1, potentially providing a new therapeutic target to achieve lasting remissions or even cures for a disease in which medical advances have been limited.

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Combination therapy well-tolerated and highly effective for patients with IDH1-mutated acute myeloid leukemia (AML)

A combination therapy of ivosenidib (IVO) plus venetoclax (VEN) with or without azacitidine (AZA) was found to be effective against a specific genetic subtype of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) in a Phase Ib/II trial led by researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The results of this trial may support a novel course of action for patients with AML harboring an IDH1 mutation who have historically had few treatment options.

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New High-Throughput Method to Study Gene Splicing at an Unprecedented Scale Reveals New Details About the Process

Genes are like instructions, but with options for building more than one thing. Daniel Larson, senior investigator at the National Cancer Institute, studies this gene “splicing” process, which happens in normal cells and goes awry in blood cancers like leukemia.

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CD19 CAR NK-cell therapy achieves 73% response rate in patients with leukemia and lymphoma

According to results from a Phase I/IIa trial at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, treatment with cord blood-derived chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) natural killer (NK)-cell therapy targeting CD19 resulted in clinical responses in a majority of patients with relapsed or refractory non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), with no major toxicities observed.

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Cancer study may accidentally help researchers create usable blood stem cells

University of Colorado Cancer Center study shows healthy form of the leukemia-causing gene MLL may push pluripotent stem cells (which have proven difficult to use in human patients) to become durable hematopoietic stem cells (which are usable in patients, but have until now been impossible to make).

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Elevated Leukemia Incidence Is Found in World Trade Center Rescue and Recovery Workers

Responders who worked at the World Trade Center site after the attacks on September 11, 2001, have an increased overall cancer incidence compared to the general population, particularly in thyroid cancer, prostate cancer, and, for the first time ever reported, leukemia, according to a Mount Sinai study published in JNCI Cancer Spectrum in January.

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ASH: Research revises classification of acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndrome

Results from a study conducted by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the Munich Leukemia Laboratory were presented today as a late-breaking abstract at the American Society of Hematology annual meeting. The study integrates genomic and transcriptomic sequencing to provide the most detailed classification of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) to date.

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New Mayo Clinic studies to be presented at American Society of Hematology meeting

Mayo Clinic researchers will present findings at the American Society of Hematology Annual Meeting Dec. 7–10 in Orlando.
New Mayo Clinic studies to be presented include:
DNA analysis identifies elevated risk factor for myeloma in individuals of African ancestry
Study identifies more precise assessment measures for patients newly diagnosed with chronic lymphocytic leukemia
Researchers develop method to assess cancer-fighting cell therapy’s effectiveness

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Use of venetoclax in reduced-intensity transplant conditioning regimen in patients with high-risk myeloid cancers shows promise in early trial

For patients with high-risk myeloid cancers undergoing a donor stem cell transplant, adding the targeted drug venetoclax to a reduced-intensity drug regimen prior to transplant is safe and does not impair the ability of the donor cells to take root in recipients’ bodies, a study led by Dana-Farber Cancer Institute researchers suggests.

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‘It’s not about just surviving. It’s about seeing my patients living normally’

Dr. Eugene Chang was 25, recently engaged and halfway through a physical medicine and rehabilitation residency in Vancouver when he started feeling sick. Fatigue, dizziness and nausea took over his normally active lifestyle. Suddenly his bike to work was not so easy.

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New NCCN Guidelines Debut to Manage Complications and Improve Readiness for Stem Cell Transplant Recipients

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) published new NCCN Clinical Practice Guidelines in Oncology (NCCN Guidelines) for Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation, (aka stem cell transplant or bone marrow transplant), with step-by-step information on best practices for this blood cancer treatment

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Antibody eradicates leukemia stem cells

Now, in experiments in mice as well as isolated human cancer cells, UCLA researchers have discovered a way to eliminate the CML stem cells. Their approach uses an antibody to block a protein that the stem cells rely on to grow. The advance, described in a study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation, might eventually help treat not only chronic myelogenous leukemia but other cancers as well.

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