• Aspirin’s apparent anti-cancer properties were in the news this week, but it has risks as well as benefits so our advice is don’t take it without talking to your GP first. For more info read our blog post or take a look at the graphic below – and here’s the coverage from the BBC, Mail Online, the Guardian, the Telegraph and NHS Choices.

Aspirin infographic

  • Our latest statistics revealed a sobering fact: long-term survival rates for pancreatic cancer have failed to improve in the last 40 years – something we’re working hard to change: Channel 5 had this report on the figures and, if you want to know more about pancreatic cancer, watch our animation below.

  • The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) announced that the breast cancer drug trastuzumab emtansine (also known as Kadcyla) is too expensive to be made routinely available on the NHS. The BBC and the Independent were among the many media outlets to cover the decision, and we had this on our news feed. And it’s worth reading this recent post about how NICE works for a bit of background.
  • Fascinating stuff from a large US consortium called The Cancer Genome Atlas: they’ve revealed an entirely new way to classify cancers. eCancer News has more.
  • Our scientists in Glasgow found a new trick for an ‘old’ drug, showing that a drug called rapamycin could be used to treat a certain type of pancreatic cancer. News Medical covered this, here’s our press release, and we also blogged about the study.
  • An international team of scientists has revealed the degree to which a rare inherited faulty gene increases a woman’s chances of breast cancer. Read our news story for details.
  • The Independent had this article on the benefits standardised tobacco packaging could have on both health and the economy.
  • A new analysis of a large ongoing European study found that prostate cancer screening using the controversial PSA test could reduce deaths from the disease. But the size of the benefit they found is very similar to results reported two years ago, so it doesn’t really change the overall picture: routine prostate screening would detect too many slow-growing cancers that don’t cause harm, so isn’t recommended. The Telegraph, Mail Online and the Independent covered the news.
  • A team of our scientists at the Barts Cancer Institute in London discovered how ‘wiggling’ stem cells fuel bowel cancer development – more on their news page.
  • Faults in a gene that controls when other genes are switched on or off are responsible for rare cases of Wilms tumour – the most common kidney cancer found in children. News Medical has more on this.
  • News Medical also had this article on a lung cancer diagnosis technique that can be used in older people to help diagnose the disease.

And finally

  • Some like it hot, but claims in the Mail Online that “Hot curries could stop you getting bowel cancer” were a bit fiery for our palette. As is often the case with these stories, the researchers were testing a purified chemical (in this case capsaicin, found in chillies) on cells and mice in the lab – so it’s a long way away from what you might find in the local takeaway.