- Several papers hailed a new “cure for skin cancer” this week. Unfortunately it’s a little early to claim that skin cancer is cured. But the research discussed is about a very promising drug called ipilimumab, which is proving to be very effective for some people with advanced melanoma, the most serious type of skin cancer. NHS Choices has a balanced analysis of the headlines.
- In welcome news, the government confirmed plans to invest an additional £400 million in the Cancer Drugs Fund, which provides patients in England with access to life-extending drugs. Our news story has more detail.
- A tried and tested blood pressure drug may improve the effects of chemotherapy. The BBC covered the work, and our own expert explains why the research is interesting in our news story.
- No, red wine doesn’t prevent cancer, but our scientists did publish some interesting research this week on a chemical found in red wine called resveratrol. The Express has more info.
- The charity Breast Cancer Research highlighted 10 “critical” gaps in knowledge about breast cancer.
- In other breast cancer news, the BBC and others reported that walking cuts breast cancer risk. This research adds to the strong evidence linking physical activity to a reduced risk of breast cancer. The good news is you don’t have to train like an Olympic athlete – but the more active you are, the greater the benefits.
- Labour MEP for London Mary Honeyball blogged about tobacco companies’ lobbying tactics.
- Tuesday marked the beginning of Stoptober and the mass quit smoking event emphasised that lung cancer is increasing in women. Our news story has more info.
- In clinical trial news, our study showed that radiotherapy could spare bladder cancer patients having potentially debilitating surgery. See our press release for the details.
- Sometimes referred to as “junk”, the bits of our DNA that don’t make up our genes are emerging as a potentially interesting source of information about cancer. Coverage of a new study from scientists in the US and Cambridge has more info.
- The Express covered research that begins to explain how aspirin might help to protect against bowel cancer. It’s too early to recommend anyone takes aspirin to cut their risk of bowel cancer, but it will be interesting to see whether or not further research supports these findings. We’ve written before about the potential benefits of aspirin in cancer here.
- Misleading claims that tight belts could give you throat cancer appeared this week. NHS choices gave a balanced view on why this is unlikely to be the case.
Images courtesy of Jon s, via Flickr.
DNA Tester October 7, 2013
As time goes on we will continue to learn more about the so called ‘junk’ pieces of DNA. It makes sense that no part of the DNA strand is really ‘junk’ we just haven’t figured out why its there.
Mick October 4, 2013
It would be great if it was known in advance what was effective and by how much… but if we knew that then no research would be needed anyway.
However I do take your point in that repetitive studies or unpromising studies or on many cases studies given grant aid based on the ‘hey here’s the new grant money, let use it or lose it’ methodology are pretty much a bad idea.
Dr Mills October 4, 2013
When we look back at the NICE-unapproved treatments that are paid for by the Cancer Drugs (Slush) Fund, I wonder how many will be shown to be an uneffective waste of money?