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    Breast cancer: finding the smoking gun

    Thursday, July 21st, 2016

    Many genes are associated with cancer. The trick is proving they actually promote tumor formation. One approach, detailed by Ian Macara, Ph.D., and colleagues last month in Cell Reports, is an in vivo “gain-of-function” screen. The researchers used a gene “library” (complementary DNA carried by lentivirus) to increase the expression of nearly 1000 different genes […]

    VICC leads study on high breast cancer incidence and mortality rates in African-American women

    Wednesday, July 6th, 2016

    A cancer research consortium headed by investigators at Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) and two other institutions, today received $12 million in federal funding to help determine why African-American women die at a higher rate and have more aggressive breast cancer than white women.  The grant, which was awarded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part […]

    VU takes key role in cancer drug discovery consortium

    Thursday, June 23rd, 2016

    Vanderbilt University has been selected as one of seven Dedicated Centers in the nation for the next phase of the Chemical Biology Consortium (CBC), a national network of scientists on the leading edge of cancer drug discovery. Vanderbilt has been part of the CBC since the consortium was established in 2009 as the discovery engine […]

    New software tracks cancer mutations, survival

    Thursday, June 2nd, 2016

    Malignant tumors are increasingly subject to routine clinical genotyping, primarily to predict drug response or assist with prognosis. A team at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) has developed and tested software that scans electronic health records in real time to monitor cancer patient survival (from time of diagnosis) according to which genes, if any, are […]

    Current cancer drug discovery method flawed: VUMC study

    Friday, May 6th, 2016

    The primary method used to test compounds for anti-cancer activity in cells is flawed, Vanderbilt University researchers reported May 2 in Nature Methods. The findings cast doubt on methods used by the entire scientific enterprise and pharmaceutical industry to discover new cancer drugs. “More than 90 percent of candidate cancer drugs fail in late-stage clinical […]

    An Argonaute’s voyage to cancer

    Friday, April 29th, 2016

    Mutations in the KRAS gene, which codes for a protein involved in normal cell signaling, promote the development of colorectal and other cancers. One mechanism by which activated KRAS may influence the phenotype of neighboring cells is by regulating the packaging of tiny RNAs called microRNAs (miRNAs) in small, bubble-like vesicles called exosomes. When delivered […]

    Pietenpol named to NCI Blue Ribbon Panel

    Wednesday, April 13th, 2016

    Jennifer Pietenpol, Ph.D., B.F. Byrd Jr. Professor of Oncology and director of Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC), has been selected to serve on a Blue Ribbon Panel that will inform the scientific direction and goals at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) for Vice President Joe Biden’s National Cancer Moonshot Initiative. The announcement was made by the […]

    Cancer prevention and poverty

    Friday, April 1st, 2016

    Interested in how cancer prevention recommendations play out in low-income populations, epidemiologist Shaneda Warren Anderson, Ph.D., and colleagues analyzed data from 61,098 adults, with overrepresentation of low-income whites and African-Americans. The team measured adherence to American Cancer Society (ACS) recommendations regarding body mass index, physical activity, diet, alcohol intake and smoking status, and they gathered […]

    New role identified for p73 gene

    Friday, April 1st, 2016

    The p53 gene is a tumor suppressor whose absence or silence contributes to cancer formation. Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center investigators recently defined the role of a family member – p73. Using a p73-deficient mouse model developed in the laboratory of Jennifer Pietenpol, Ph.D., investigators led by Clayton Marshall found that p73 regulates at least 100 genes […]

    ROCKs and cancer invasion

    Thursday, March 17th, 2016

    Cancers become fatal mostly because of their ability to spread. Cancerous cells migrate from primary tumors and invade neighboring tissues through protrusions called invadopodia. The rigidity of the cancerous mass, the tumor-associated extracellular matrix (ECM), drives malignant behavior through the Rho/ROCK signaling pathway. In particular, the ROCK protein is mutated and overexpressed in many cancers, […]

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