Tag Archives: Tumor

Stem cells against brain cancer

In a breakthrough, Harvard scientists have discovered that stem cells loaded with the herpes virus can be used to specifically target and kill brain tumours.

Harvard Stem Cell Institute (HSCI) scientists at Massachusetts General Hospital have a potential solution for how to more effectively kill tumour cells using cancer-killing viruses.

The work, led by Khalid Shah, an HSCI Principal Faculty member, found that trapping virus-loaded stem cells in a gel and applying them to tumours significantly improved survival in mice with glioblastoma multiforme, the most common brain tumour in human adults and also the most difficult to treat (…)

Shah and his
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POTENTIAL NEW “TWIST” IN BREAST CANCER DETECTION

December 4, 2009- Working with mice, scientists at Johns Hopkins publishing in the December issue of Neoplasia have shown that a protein made by a gene called “Twist” may be the proverbial red flag that can accurately distinguish stem cells that drive aggressive, metastatic breast cancer from other breast cancer cells.

Building on recent work suggesting that it is a relatively rare subgroup of stem cells in breast tumors that drives breast cancer, scientists have surmised that this subgroup of cells must have some very distinctive qualities and characteristics.

ITALY – Role of Stem Cells in Thyroid Tumors Discovered

Stem cells could be responsible for some forms of aggressive thyroid tumors (ATC, anaplastic thyroid carcinoma). The discovery was made by a young group of biotechnologists, biologists, and doctors from the Endocrinology department of the General Hospital of the University of Palermo. In the study, published in Plos One, the researchers described a subset of tumor stem cells that were able to proliferate continuously and may be responsible for uncontrolled tumor growth. These cells are resistant to chemotherapy and explain why ATC is so highly fatal in such a short period of time. The
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MIT team’s nanoparticles could become a safer alternative to gene therapy delivered by viruses

About five years ago, Professor Janet Sawicki at the Lankenau Institute in Pennsylvania read an article about nanoparticles developed by MIT’s Daniel Anderson and Robert Langer for gene therapy, the insertion of genes into living cells for the treatment of disease. Sawicki was working on treating ovarian cancer by delivering — through viruses — the gene for the diphtheria toxin, which kills tumor cells (…)

Now, a new tool to examine cancer growth

Image via Wikipedia

Scientists have developed a new tool that illuminates connections between stem cells and cancer.
Researchers have been successful in breaking apart human prostate tissue, extract the stem cells in the tissue, and alter those cells genetically so that they spur cancer.

Many tissues contain pools of stem cells that replenish the tissue when it’s damaged or when changes take place. For example, stem cells in the skin produce new cells to replace those irreparably damaged by the sun, and stem cells in the breast create milk-producing cells when a woman is pregnant.

A characteristic of these stem cells is that
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