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SU2C-supported researchers gain new insights into immunotherapy, precision treatment

Immunotherapy and precision treatment are two of the biggest trends in cancer research and treatment today. Studies published recently in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine show that SU2C-supported researchers are at the forefront of these remarkable trends. These studies deal with immunotherapy in advanced melanoma and targeted therapy in metastatic prostate cancer.

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SU2C-supported Immunotherapy Research Aids Children with Leukemia and Adults with Melanoma

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SU2C scientist elected to prestigious National Academy of Sciences

Congratulations to Peter Jones, PhD, DSc, a member of the SU2C scientific community, who has been elected to the prestigious National Academy of Sciences!  The Academy advises the government and the nation on scientific issues.  An expert in epigenetics at the Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Dr. Jones was co-leader of the SU2C Epigenetics Dream Team and is continuing his work as leader of the VARI-SU2C Epigenetics Dream Team. Also serving as team leader is Dr. Stephen Baylin of VARI. 

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SU2C Scientists Named to Cancer Moonshot Panel

We are very excited to share with you the news that several scientists and advocates associated with Stand Up To Cancer have been appointed to the new Blue Ribbon Panel that will provide scientific guidance to the cancer “moonshot” initiative headed by Vice President Joe Biden. According to an announcement today from the National Cancer Institute, the panel will serve as a working group of the existing National Cancer Advisory Board (NCAB), which is appointed by the President, and will provide scientific guidance from thought leaders in the cancer community. The panel will begin its deliberations immediately, and will deliver a report to the NCAB this summer, according to NCI.

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Pediatric cancers: Pediatric Cancer Dream Team scientists report new findings

Researchers from the SU2C-St. Baldrick’s Foundation Pediatric Cancer Dream Team found that if medulloblastoma, a brain cancer more common in children than adults, recurs after treatment, it is likely to be genetically different from the original disease. This could open new avenues for better treatment of the recurrent tumors.

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Other scientists on the pediatric team demonstrated ways to improve the process through which T cells, the immune cells needed for adoptive cell therapy (the powerful immunotherapy that has saved the lives of children with leukemia), are collected and modified in the laboratory before they are returned to the patient.

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Prostate Cancer Dream Team Members develop “classifier” to aid diagnosis

Scientists with the SU2C-Prostate Cancer Foundation Dream Team have developed a “molecular classifier” for patients with metastatic prostate cancer that has become resistant to the standard hormone treatment.  Based on biomarkers, the “classifier” can help identify tumors that are transitioning to a more dangerous form of the disease, potentially improving treatment and benefitting the patient.

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Ovarian Cancer Dream Team addresses inherited risk

Researchers on the SU2C-OCRF-NOCC-OCNA Ovarian Cancer Dream Team are part of a group that studied inherited risk in ovarian cancer.  They found that nearly one-fifth of the ovarian cancer cases examined are associated with inherited mutations in genes such as BRCA. Armed with this knowledge, the Dream Team is preparing a trial of improved access to genetic testing and risk assessment.

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SU2C Dream Team Leader Dr. Ribas talks dangers of tanning beds

More than 1.6 million high school students are estimated to use tanning beds every year, with four times as many girls as boys using indoor tanning devices, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) study.
According to the
American Academy of Dermatology, those who have been exposed to UV radiation from indoor tanning are 59 percent more likely to develop melanoma than those who have never tanned indoors.

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SU2C Scientific Leader Dr. William Nelson on Prostate Cancer

Early-stage prostate cancer: to treat or not to treat? Concern that low-grade prostate cancers may be overtreated once they are discovered has led to controversy about the value of prostate cancer screening and what should be done if low-grade cancer is discovered. Dr. William G. Nelson, vice-chairperson of SU2C’s Scientific Advisory Committee, discusses the question in the blog of the American Association for Cancer Research, SU2C’s scientific partner.

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SU2C supported study of immunotherapy that helped President Carter

Scientists supported by Stand Up To Cancer have been instrumental in studying the impact of a new drug that is credited in part with getting rid of metastatic melanoma lesions in the brain of former President Jimmy Carter. MRI scans showed that the lesions were gone, Carter said, leaving him cancer-free just four months after revealing that he had melanoma that had spread to his brain. A portion of his liver had already been removed by surgery.

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