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Thursday, January 31, 2013

LUNGevity Foundation Hosts Third Annual Hope Summit During May, Lung Cancer Hope Month

Cancer survivors park 2
Cancer survivors park 2 (Photo credit: Loco Steve)

(WASHINGTON, January 31, 2013) — "LUNGevity Foundation, the nation’s largest lung cancer-focused nonprofit, is inviting lung cancer survivors from across the nation to register for the 2013 LUNGevity Hope Summit taking place May 3-5, 2013 in Arlington, VA. The two day conference, taking place during Lung Cancer Hope Month, is designed for lung cancer survivors of all ages and stages of disease, currently in or out of treatment. 

The summit provides an opportunity for participants to celebrate lung cancer survivorship, and gives survivors the opportunity to learn, collaborate, advocate and use their voices and stories to make a difference in the fight against lung cancer. 
The topics to be addressed at this year’s Hope Summit will include inspirational speakers, medical expert forums, advocacy forums, lung cancer survivor-specific sessions, and opportunities for lung cancer survivors to share and connect with other survivors. There will be sessions specifically for survivors in active treatment and others for those out of treatment to address their specific needs.
Hope Summit attendees from previous years describe the value of the summit in very personal terms:

”Being in a room with 50 or so cancer survivors is an awe-inspiring event. Being in a room with 50 or so LUNG cancer survivors is as life-changing as the disease itself. Thank you all for an amazing weekend. “ - Alan
“The LUNGevity Hope Summit gave me the powerful sense of community that I often see in other groups, such as breast cancer or HIV/AIDS survivors, which I had not experienced since my lung cancer diagnosis.  Your inspirational speakers, medical experts, advocacy training, and lung cancer survivor-specific workshops will be key in empowering us as cancer survivors to connect with other survivors and share our stories” - Jose

LUNGevity designated May as Lung Cancer Hope Month to celebrate the hope for better treatments and cures for lung cancer, as well as improving lung cancer survival rates and ensuring a higher quality-of-life for lung cancer patients and their loved ones. To register for the event and to learn more, go to: www.lungevity.org/HOPESUMMIT. 
LUNGevity is offering a limited number of travel grants, based on need and availability. Deadline for grant applications is March 30. LUNGevity Foundation is also offering Community Partnerships to select organizations.  Please contact Katie Brown, LUNGevity Director of Support and Advocacy, at kbrown@lungevity.org with any questions related to the Hope Summit or Community Partnerships.
About LUNGevity Foundation

The mission of LUNGevity Foundation is to have a meaningful impact on improving lung cancer survival rates, ensure a higher quality-of-life for lung cancer patients and provide a community for those impacted by lung cancer. It does so by supporting critical research into the early detection and successful treatment of lung cancer, as well as by providing information, resources and a support community to patients and caregivers.
LUNGevity seeks to inspire the nation to commit to ending lung cancer.
About Lung Cancer

  • 1 in 14 Americans is diagnosed with lung cancer in their lifetime
  • Lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer death, regardless of gender or ethnicity
  • Lung cancer kills almost twice as many women as breast cancer and more than three times as many men as prostate cancer
  • About 55% of all new lung cancer diagnoses are among people who have never smoked or are former smokers
  • Only 16% of all people diagnosed with lung cancer will survive 5 years or more, BUT if it’s caught before it spreads, the chance for 5-year survival improves dramatically"
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Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Cancer patients will ‘manage disease’ with new DNA-based treatments | Health | Life | National Post


Cancer patients will ‘manage disease’ with new DNA-based treatments | Health | Life | National Post

Excerpt: (click on above link for full article)

"Cancer will become a manageable disease rather than a death sentence thanks to a revolutionary treatment which will be available within five years, British specialists predict.


All patients will soon have their tumour’s DNA, its genetic code, sequenced, enabling doctors to ensure they give exactly the right drugs to keep the disease at bay.
Doctors hope it will be an important step towards transforming cancer into a chronic rather than fatal disease."
***
"Genetic profiling of tumours is already used to some extent, but current methods only look for a few genes. Women with advanced breast cancer are tested to see if their tumours have a particular variant of the HER2 gene, which causes a fifth of cases. Those with it are given Herceptin, but the same drug would do no good for those without the gene variant.


Advanced melanoma patients with a particular gene mutation are prescribed Vemurafenib, a pill that has been shown to increase survival, on average, from 9.6 to 13.2 months, and help patients feel much more energetic.
But average survival times hide massive variations. One patient at the Royal Marsden in Chelsea, where the institute is based, has survived 10 years so far with advanced breast cancer on Herceptin.
Prof Ashworth said that such cases were the exception.
But he added: “We would hope that they will become the norm. By actively profiling patients who respond well, and sequencing their genomes, we can find the genes that are responsible for that.”
***
It’s an idea that is elegant for its simplicity: Rather than killing cancer with chemo- or radiation therapies, which can also poison healthy tissue, why not conduct the attack with the weapons of the body’s own immune system? Although the idea has been around for decades, the technique, known as immuno­therapy, has long been a frontier of cancer care that’s just out of reach."


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Thursday, January 24, 2013

Fish Oil Supplements May Do More Harm Than Good - Macleans.ca

DHA Molecule
DHA Molecule (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Fish oil pills may do more harm than good, Aspirin use linked to blindness - Need to know - Macleans.ca:

Fish oil supplements questioned

These pills are often seen as a way to increase heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, but this might not be the case, according to a recent study from UBC. In a study conducted on mice, UBC assistant professor of biology Sanjoy Ghosh found that mice which were already eating a diet including vegetable oil actually has less ability to repair cells in their gastrointestinal system when they were fed fish-oil supplements as well.
“Our hypothesis is that levels of omega 6 [fats found in vegetable-based oils] are so high in our bodies that any more unsaturated fatty acid — even omega 3, despite its health benefits — will actually contribute to the negative effects omega 6 PUFA have on the heart and gut,”  Ghosh told The Vancouver Sun. “When there is too much [polyunsaturated fatty acid], the body doesn’t know what to do with it.”

Ghosh’s work was published in the British Journal of Nutrition.

*Excerpt from MacLeans.ca
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Thursday, January 17, 2013

Oxidants, antioxidants and the current incurability of metastatic cancers

Oxidants, antioxidants and the current incurability of metastatic cancers

"Abstract

The vast majority of all agents used to directly kill cancer cells (ionizing radiation, most chemotherapeutic agents and some targeted therapies) work through either directly or indirectly generating reactive oxygen species that block key steps in the cell cycle. As mesenchymal cancers evolve from their epithelial cell progenitors, they almost inevitably possess much-heightened amounts of antioxidants that effectively block otherwise highly effective oxidant therapies. Also key to better understanding is why and how the anti-diabetic drug metformin (the world's most prescribed pharmaceutical product) preferentially kills oxidant-deficient mesenchymal p53− −cells. A much faster timetable should be adopted towards developing more new drugs effective against p53− − cancers."

Read full article here.

The author Jim Watson is known for his "leading NIH's role in the Human Genome Project (1986–1992). In 2008, JDW's main interest moved to the curing of cancer focusing on the biochemistry of cancer cells as opposed to their genetic origins."

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About Onco-PRN

Welcome and thanks for visiting Onco-P.R.N. - The oncology website with a focus on all things oncology pharmacy/pain/palliative care-related. It is intended to be an information resource for those pharmacist and relevant health care professionals involved in whatever fashion with cancer and palliative care. Stay tuned for the latest and greatest links and information with respect to: oncology medications, continuing education, pharmaceutical care initiatives, pain and symptom control, supportive care topics, and whatever else that might fit into the theme.

*Note: This website is not affiliated with Alberta Health Services (AHS) or CAPhO and the opinions expressed herewithin are that of the author(s).

Pharmacy History

"The earliest known compilation of medicinal substances was ARIANA the Sushruta Samhita, an Indian Ayurvedic treatise attributed to Sushruta in the 6th century BC. However, the earliest text as preserved dates to the 3rd or 4th century AD.
Many Sumerian (late 6th millennium BC - early 2nd millennium BC) cuneiform clay tablets record prescriptions for medicine.[3]

Ancient Egyptian pharmacological knowledge was recorded in various papyri such as the Ebers Papyrus of 1550 BC, and the Edwin Smith Papyrus of the 16th century BC.

The earliest known Chinese manual on materia medica is the Shennong Bencao Jing (The Divine Farmer's Herb-Root Classic), dating back to the 1st century AD. It was compiled during the Han dynasty and was attributed to the mythical Shennong. Earlier literature included lists of prescriptions for specific ailments, exemplified by a manuscript "Recipes for 52 Ailments", found in the Mawangdui tomb, sealed in 168 BC. Further details on Chinese pharmacy can be found in the Pharmacy in China article."

From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pharmacy#History_of_pharmacy

Journal of Palliative Medicine - Table of Contents

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