Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

VCU Massey discovery could lead to breakthrough for non-small cell lung cancer

Research at Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center led by Charles E. Chalfant, Ph.D., associate professor of biochemistry and molecular biology, discovered a previously unknown mechanism in non-small cell lung cancer cells that contributes to their ability to maintain and grow tumors. Narrowing in on this mechanism could provide a breakthrough for the development of effective therapies for NSCLC and other cancers.

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New function of gene in promoting cancer found

Researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University have discovered that a gene well known for its involvement in tumor cell development, growth and metastasis also protects cancer cells from being destroyed by chemotherapy. By inhibiting the expression of this gene, doctors may have a new viable and effective approach for treating aggressive cancers such as breast, liver and prostate carcinomas, malignant gliomas and neuroblastomas that result from high expression of this cancer-promoting gene.

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Key leukemia defense mechanism discovered by VCU Massey Cancer Center

Virginia Commonwealth University Massey Cancer Center researcher Steven Grant, M.D., and a team of VCU Massey researchers have uncovered the mechanism by which leukemia cells trigger a protective response when exposed to a class of cancer-killing agents known as histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACIs). The findings, published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, could lead to more effective treatments in patients with leukemia and other cancers of the blood.

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Researchers discover a drug combination that shrinks tumors in vivo

Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine and VCU Massey Cancer Center researchers have shown that the impotence drug Viagra, in combination with doxorubicin, a powerful anti-cancer drug, enhances its anti-tumor efficacy in prostate cancer while alleviating the damage to the heart at the same time.

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New combination therapy eradicates prostate cancer in vivo

Paul Fisher

In their study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, prostate cancer growth in mice with functioning immune systems was inhibited by sensitizing the cancer cells with the drug Sabutoclax (BI-97C1) and using UTMD technology to deliver a viral gene therapy that expresses the genemda-7/IL-24. This powerful new approach to treating prostate cancer builds upon prior studies by principle investigator Paul B. Fisher, M.P.H., Ph.D., Thelma Newmeyer Corman Endowed Chair in Oncology Research at VCU Massey (photo on left). Fisher is professor and chair of the Department of Human and Molecular Genetics in the VCU School of Medicine, and director of the VCU Institute of Molecular Medicine.

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