Singing a Tumor Test Song

Singing may be the next-generation, noninvasive approach to determining the health of a patient’s thyroid. When a person sings, the vibrations create waves in the tissue near the vocal tract called shear waves. If a tumor is present in the thyroid, the elasticity of its surrounding tissue increases, stiffening, and causing the shear waves to accelerate. Using ultrasound imaging to measure these waves, researchers can determine the elasticity of the thyroid tissue. They demonstrate the technique in Applied Physics Letters.

Girl gets her smile back – and a new jaw – thanks to innovative tissue engineering procedure

Nine-year-old Grace Moss of Laredo, Texas, was facing a daunting prospect. A tumor that had invaded her jaw had been removed, but now the plastic surgeon wanted to remove her fibula – the smaller of the two bones in her lower leg – to use as a graft.

Personalized drug screens could guide treatment for children with brain cancer

Scientists at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute, University of California San Diego School of Medicine and Hopp Children’s Cancer Center Heidelberg (KiTZ) have demonstrated that personalized drug screens can be used to identify new therapeutic candidates for medulloblastoma. The approach measures the effectiveness of therapeutics using tumor cells obtained from a biopsy and can be performed in a few days—making it one of the quickest sources of information used in clinical decision-making.

Brooke Emerling awarded Research Scholar Grant by American Cancer Society

Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute is pleased to announce that the American Cancer Society has awarded Brooke Emerling, Ph.D., a Research Scholar Grant (RSG) to study a new approach to targeting tumors that have a mutation in the p53 gene—the most altered gene in human cancers. The grants are often a career-launching award for “rising stars” in the cancer research arena. The four-year grant will help advance Emerling’s research toward eliminating cancer as a major health problem.

Personalized Microrobots Swim Through Biological Barriers, Deliver Drugs to Cells

Biohybrid robots on the micrometer scale can swim through the body and deliver drugs to tumors or provide other cargo-carrying functions. To be successful, they must consist of materials that can pass through the body’s immune response, swim quickly through viscous environments and penetrate tissue cells to deliver cargo. In this week’s APL Bioengineering, researchers fabricated biohybrid bacterial microswimmers by combining a genetically engineered E. coli MG1655 substrain and nanoerythrosomes, small structures made from red blood cells.

Roswell Park’s Dr. Pawel Kalinski to Lead $14.5M NCI-Funded Immunotherapy Effort

A team led by Pawel Kalinski, MD, PhD, of Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center has earned a five-year, $14.54 million award from the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to expand a promising immunotherapy platform. Funded through the NCI’s Program Project Grant program, this prestigious five-year grant will fund five clinical trials, all focused on a strategy for making some of the most common immunotherapies work for more cancer patients.

Designer Probiotic Treatment for Cancer Immunotherapy

Columbia Engineers have engineered probiotics to safely deliver immunotherapies within tumors, including nanobodies against two proven therapeutic targets—PD-L1 and CTLA-4. Continuously released by bacteria, the drugs continue to attack the tumor after just one dose, facilitating an immune response resulting in tumor regression. The versatile probiotic platform can also be used to deliver multiple immunotherapies simultaneously, enabling the release of effective therapeutic combinations within the tumor for more difficult-to-treat cancers like colorectal cancer.

Can the flu shot help fight cancer?

Physicians and scientists at Rush University Medical Center have found that injecting tumors with influenza vaccines, including some FDA-approved seasonal flu shots, turns cold tumors to hot, a discovery that could lead to an immunotherapy to treat cancer. The study results were published December 30th in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

University of Chicago scientists unveil the secret of cancer-associated Warburg effect

A new study, led by researchers at the University of Chicago, provides an answer to why cancer cells consume and use nutrients differently than their healthy counterparts and how that difference contributes to their survival and growth.