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Statin use improves renal cell cancer survival

Friday, April 17th, 2015

A new study led by Vanderbilt University investigators found that patients being treated with statins at the time of surgery for kidney cancer, also known as renal cell carcinoma, had improved overall survival and disease-specific survival. Drugs known as statins are widely used to lower cholesterol and previous studies have indicated that they could be […]

Cancer signaling pathway blocker

Friday, April 10th, 2015

Researchers at Vanderbilt University have discovered a new way to inhibit Hedgehog (Hh) signaling, an important regulatory pathway for vertebrate development – and cancer. Abnormal regulation of this pathway leads to several human malignancies, including small cell lung cancer and pancreatic cancer, and therefore it is a potential drug target for cancer. Small molecules have […]

Micelle “packets” deliver cancer drugs

Friday, April 10th, 2015

Small interfering RNA (siRNA) molecules can suppress tumor growth and target cells otherwise untreatable by conventional therapeutics, but targeted, intracellular delivery is a significant limitation to siRNA translation. To deliver the siRNA molecules into tumor cells, researchers have packaged them in micelles that express folic acid, which is internalized by cancer cells that overexpress folate […]

New driver behind lung cancer progression

Thursday, April 2nd, 2015

Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center investigators have identified the mechanisms used by a gene and its binding protein to drive tumor growth in several forms of cancer, including non-small cell lung cancer. In a report published online recently in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS), first author Jun Qian, Ph.D., lead investigator Pierre Massion, M.D., […]

‘Docking stations’ on chromosomes new anti-cancer target

Thursday, March 26th, 2015

Vanderbilt University researchers have discovered a cleft in a chromosome-binding protein that may hold the key to stopping most cancers in their tracks. The protein, WDR5, is a “docking station” for a family of transcription factors called MYC that is overexpressed in the majority of malignancies and which contributes to an estimated 100,000 cancer-related deaths […]

VICC’s Johnson to study cancer survivorship with immune inhibitor drugs

Thursday, March 19th, 2015

Douglas Johnson, M.D., assistant professor of Medicine, has been named a recipient of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network  (NCCN) Foundation Young Investigator Awards. The two-year grant will provide $150,000 in funding for his research on survivorship among cancer patients who receive drugs called immune checkpoint inhibitors. The formal announcement of the grant awardees was made […]

Team blends high-end imaging techniques

Monday, March 16th, 2015

Vanderbilt University researchers have achieved the first “image fusion” of mass spectrometry and microscopy — a technical tour de force that could, among other things, dramatically improve the diagnosis and treatment of cancer. Microscopy can yield high-resolution images of tissues, but “it really doesn’t give you molecular information,” said Richard Caprioli, Ph.D., senior author of […]

Mutations may predict melanoma response to immunotherapies

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

Melanoma patients whose tumors test positive for mutations in the NRAS gene were more likely to benefit from new immunotherapy drugs, according to a new study led by Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) investigators. Douglas Johnson, M.D., assistant professor of Medicine, and Christine Lovly, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of Medicine and Cancer Biology, are co-first authors […]

‘Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies’

Wednesday, March 11th, 2015

The Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, in collaboration with Nashville Public Television, American Cancer Society, and Gilda’s Club, will host a free preview of “Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies,” panel discussion and moderated Q&A on Wednesday, March 25 at the Vanderbilt University Student Life Center.

Zanic’s journey to lab followed winding path

Monday, March 9th, 2015

It’s roughly 5,000 miles from Croatia to Tennessee as the crow flies. For Marija Zanic, Ph.D., who joined Vanderbilt University’s Department of Cell and Developmental Biology as an assistant professor last August, the journey from her home country took a more circuitous route — from cell biology to theoretical physics and back again. Zanic’s dissertation […]