Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

2011 Archive

VCU Massey Cancer Center researchers overcome barrier to cancer immunotherapy

In lab studies, researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center have effectively reprogrammed cells of the innate and adaptive immune system to overcome a key cancer defense mechanism and develop long-lasting memory to reject breast cancer cells and guard against tumor relapse. Reported in the Journal of Immunology and led by Masoud Manjili, D.V.M., Ph.D., assistant professor of microbiology and immunology at VCU Massey, the study discovered a way to improve adoptive cellular therapy ACT for breast cancer.

Continue reading →

Key function of mutation in hereditary breast and ovarian cancer gene discovered

It is widely known that mutations in the breast cancer susceptibility 1 (BRCA1) gene significantly increase the chance of developing breast and ovarian cancers, but the mechanisms at play are not fully understood. Now, researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center have shown that certain BRCA1 mutations result in excessive, uncontrolled DNA repair, which challenges the prior assumption that mutations in BRCA1 only contribute to breast cancer through a reduction in function.

Continue reading →

Clinical trial shows benefit to adding Avastin to neoadjuvant chemotherapy in breast cancer patients

Amid the controversy surrounding the Food and Drug Administration’s ruling that Avastin should no longer be used to treat metastatic breast cancer, a new multinational phase 3 clinical trial shows that Avastin significantly increased tumor response rates in breast cancer patients when given before surgery.

Continue reading →

Communication with doctors is critical to early, accurate colorectal cancer diagnosis

Headshot of Laura Siminoff for Blog Post

Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the second leading cause of cancer death in the U.S., but if diagnosed early, patients have a five-year survival rate of 91 percent. In a study recently published in the journalPatient Education and Counseling, Laura A. Siminoff, Ph.D., and a team of researchers conducted in-depth interviews with 242 patients diagnosed with CRC in the six months preceding the study.

Continue reading →

Discoveries in mitochondria open new field of cancer research

Researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center have revealed novel mechanisms in mitochondria that have implications for cancer as well as many other age-related diseases such as Parkinson’s disease, heart disease and hypertension. This discovery has pioneered the formation of a whole new field within epigenetics research ripe with possibilities of developing future gene therapies to treat cancer and age-associated diseases.

Continue reading →