Cancer in the headlines, Sept 7



newspaperLet’ start the week with some cancer news update

News about  skin cancer

NIH Study Reveals New Genetic Culprit in Deadly Skin Cancer
Researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) have identified a new group of genetic mutations that are linked to melanoma. Melanoma is the deadliest type of skin cancer. What is interesting is that some of these mutations are also linked to breast cancer.  The mutations, which are found in about a fifth of melanoma cases, actually are in a gene that is being targeted by a drug approved for breast cancer. “We have found what appears to be an Achilles’ heel of a sizable share of melanomas,”  according to author Dr. Yardena Samuels of the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) .

News about  prostate cancer

Overdiagnosis of Prostate Cancer Widespread, Study Finds
Is prostate cancer overdiagnosed? The incidence of prostate cancer has been increasing during the last 20 years mainly due to new screening techniques. The prostate-specific antigen (PSA) blood test has especially been popular but also controversial. Many health experts believe that the test has a high rate of false positives. A recent study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute estimates that more than million of those men who were diagnosed may actually not have benefited from the diagnosis.

September Focused on Health: Men’s Health Update
The September issue of Focused on health, the free online newsletter of the MD Anderson Cancer Center is focusing on men’s health, particularly on prostate cancer, PSA, and eating healthy. Subscription is for free.

News from the pollution fighters

American Lung Association to EPA: Tighter NO2 Standards Necessary
The American Lung Association (ALA) is calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to “adopt stronger air quality standards for nitrogen dioxide”  in order to protect the health of those who are living close to highways and major thouroughfares. The ALA volunteer leaders made the petition at the EPA hearings last month. Specifically, the request is ” to lower the official limit (called the air quality standard) for NO2, a potent form of air pollution. The new NO2 standard will trigger federally enforced clean up measures designed to protect people from the harm that breathing this pollutant can cause. “

Smoke no longer found in European hospitals
Not all European countries have banned cigarette smoking in public places. However it seems that at least the hospitals are smoke-free. A  study by researchers at  Catalan Institute of Oncology (ICO) shows that environmental  smoke exposure in European hospitals is “low”, and “without any notable differences.”  The measurements were done way back in 2001, indicating some kind of anti-smoking regulations were already in place 8 years ago.

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NOTE: The contents in this blog are for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical advice, diagnosis, treatment or a substitute for professional care. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional before making changes to any existing treatment or program. Some of the information presented in this blog may already be out of date.
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