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A Light in the Shadow

Type: 
Book
Description: 

This is a wonderful and heartwarming story told by the author and several family members about her father's last year after being diagnosed with cancer and the choices he and his family made. It takes you into the experiences the family and her father had in a way that pulls you in and keeps you reading. Great book telling the story of a man who is an example to us all about how to live and die with dignity and respect for his family, himself, and his beliefs in God and what laid before him upon his departure from this earth.

Source: 
Tate Publishing
Author/Speaker/Performer: 
Anna Zernickow
Publish date: 
2005
Bill67's picture

Prostate Cancer Foundation

Type: 
Web site
Description: 

They support Prostate Cancer research. They also have reading materials about Prostate Cancer. I first heard about the foundation when Safeway Grocery Stores were accepting donations for the foundation. I found the web site from a link on another web site.

btcat's picture

Grace Livingston Hill

Type: 
Web site
Description: 

I'm sharing this website not so much for the virtue of the website but to tell you all about an author that I love. Grace Livingston Hill has written over 100 inspiring and faithfilled books of fiction laced wonderfullly with God's messages. Some of her short stories are set in Biblical times making Biblical events come to life. I haven't read but a fraction of all of her books, but I hope to read them all someday. One of my greatest family inheritances is a collecion of Grace Livingston Hill's books that belonged to my grandmother.

Red Toe Nail

Type: 
Web site
Description: 

This site is provided by Dr. Phil Berman who is going thru cancer treatment & has allowed other cancer survivors to create blogs about their situation. My personal blog regarding inflammatory breast cancer is at http://cbuerger.redtoenail.org. The blog site is easy to set up & maintain.

Appendix Cancer (Appendiceal Carcinoma) and Peritoneal Surface Malignancy

Type: 
Web site
Description: 

Survivor story of a nurse diagnosed with Signet Ring Appendiceal Cancer. Site lists information and resources about appendix cancer, treatment options and also identifies specialists treating this rare cancer. Offers additional information about clinical trials, means for obtaining assistance with medical travel and practical advice for dealing with insurance and billing issues.

Ovarian Cancer Your guide to taking control

Type: 
Book
Description: 

A very useful, informative book. Covers things to know at diagnosis, chosing a Physician , treatment,
re-ocurrence and end of life issues.

Source: 
O'Reilly & Associates
Author/Speaker/Performer: 
Kristine Conner & Laauren Langford
Publish date: 
2003
gdpawel's picture

Test Identifies Patients who Benefit from Targeted Drugs

Type: 
Article
Description: 

As we enter the era of "personalized" medicine, it is time to take a fresh look at how we evaluate treatments for cancer patients. More emphasis should be put on matching treatment to the patient. Patients would certainly have a better chance of success had their cancer been chemo-sensitive rather than chemo-resistant, where it is more apparent that chemotherapy improves the survival of patients, and where identifying the most effective chemotherapy would be more likely to improve survival.

Findings presented at the 41st Annual Meeting of the European Society for Clinical Investigation in Uppsala, Sweden, April 18, 2007, concluded that "functional profiling" with cell culture assays is relevant for the study of both "conventional" and "targeted" anti-neoplastic drug agents (anti-tumor and anti-angiogenic activity of Iressa, Tarceva, Sutent, Nexavar, and Avastin in primary cultures of "fresh" human tumors).

Cell Culture Assays with "cell-death" endpoints can show disease-specific drug activity, are useful clinical and research tools for "conventional" and "targeted" drugs, and provide unique information complementary to that provided by "molecular" tests. There have been more than 25 peer-reviewed publications showing significant correlations between cell-death assay results and patient response and survival.

Many patients are treated not only with a "targeted" therapy drug like Tarceva, Avastin, or Iressa, but with a combination of chemotherapy drugs. Therefore, existing DNA or RNA sequences or expression of individual proteins often examine only one compenent of a much larger, interactive process. The oncologist might need to administer several chemotherapy drugs at varying doses because tumor cells express survival factors with a wide degree of individual cell variability.

There is a tactic of using biopsied cells to predict which cancer treatments will work best for the patient, by taking pieces of live "fresh" tumor tissue, applying different chemotherapy treatments to it, and examining the results to see which drug or combination of drugs does the best job killing the tumor cells. A cell culture assay test with "functional profiling," using a cell-death endpoint, can help see what treatments will not have the best opportunity of being successful (resistant) and identify drugs that have the best opportunity of being successful (sensitive).

"Funtional profiling" measures the response of the tumor cells to drug exposure. Following this exposure, they measure both cell metabolism and cell morphology. The integrated effect of the drugs on the whole cell, resulting in a cellular response to the drug, measuring the interaction of the entire genome. No matter which genes are being affected, "functional profiling" is measuring them through the surrogate of measuring if the cell is alive or dead.

For example, the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) is a protein on the surface of a cell. EGFR-inhibiting drugs certainly do target specific genes, but even knowing what genes the drugs target doesn't tell you the whole story. Both Iressa and Tarceva target EGFR protein-tyrosine kinases. But all the EGFR mutation or amplificaton studies can tell us is whether or not the cells are potentially susceptible to this mechanism of attack. They don't tell you if Iressa is better or worse than Tarceva or other drugs which may target this. There are differences. The drugs have to get inside the cells in order to target anything. So, in different tumors, either Iressa or Tarceva might get in better or worse than the other. And the drugs may also be inactivated at different rates, also contributing to sensitivity versus resistance.

As an example of this testing, researchers have tested how well a pancreatic cancer patient can be treated successfully with a combination of drugs commonly used to fight lung, pancreatic, breast, and colorectal cancers. The pre-test can report prospectively to a physician specifically which chemotherapy agent would benefit a cancer patient. Drug sensitivity profiles differ significantly among cancer patients even when diagnosed with the same cancer.

The "funtional profiling" technique makes the statistically significant association between prospectively reported test results and patient survival. It can correlate test results that are obtained in the lab and reported to physicians prior to patient treatment, with significantly longer or shorter overall patient survival depending upon whether the drug was found to be effective or ineffective at killing the patient's tumor cells in the laboratory.

This could help solve the problem of knowing which patients can tolerate costly new treatments and their harmful side effects. These "smart" drugs are a really exciting element of cancer medicine, but do not work for everyone, and a test to determine the efficacy of these drugs in a patient could be the first crucial step in personalizing treatment to the individual.

Source: 
Eur J Clin Invest 37 (suppl. 1):60, 2007
Contact information: 
phone: (714) 596-2100
Author/Speaker/Performer: 
Larry Weisenthal, M.D., Ph.D.
scottvs's picture

Friends Like Mine

Type: 
Audio/Video
Description: 

This song: Friends Like Mine
represents a volunteer campaign supporting the fight against Cancer. Written by a Cancer survivor, it was inpired by the the American Cancer Society Relay for Life.

Source: 
none
Contact information: 
phone: 616-738-7536 friendslikemine@charter.net
Author/Speaker/Performer: 
Scott Adam VanderSchel
jppshipley's picture

Give Your Heart a Healthy Beat

Type: 
Web site
Description: 

This site is provides a program that you can use to help make healthful changes in your eating and exercise habits designed to help prevent cardiovascular disease.

gdpawel's picture

Finding The Best Treatment For Recurrent Ovarian Cancer

Type: 
Article
Description: 

According to a study by Dr. Holly Gallion, published in the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer (IJGC) researchers using the Chemo FX Assay by Precision Therapeutics, identified which chemo agent would be most lethal to an individual patient's cancer. In the study of 256 women with recurrent ovarian cancer, the time women went before a worsening of their disease was two to three times longer if they were treated with an assay-sensitive drug compared to an assay-resistant drug. The bottom line is the assay is able to predict the patient's response to treatment. The Chemo FX is a (cell-death) assay test. Their study adds to the already large body of evidence of the accuracy of cell culture assays in ovarian cancer.

The assay determines which agents are most potent against a specific tumor and what concentration works best. No more hit or miss in the patient. Armed with that information, the treating physician and patient can proceed with a chemo regimen likely to work right out of the gate and subjecting the patient to less toxicity. If the assay finds that the tumor responds to none of the currently avialable treatments, a patient could then be referred to a clinical trial before a history of less useful treatments rules her out as a clinical trial candidate.

In light of the precious little in the way of guidance from clinical trials with respect to best empiric treatment, oncologists give treatments knowing full well that only a certain percentage of patients will receive a benefit from any given medicine. They subject patients to one combination chemotherapy after another, just going from one journal paper to another journal paper. They need information about the characteristics that predict which patients are more likely to respond well. The empirical approach, which is based on medical journal articles, epidemiology and economics, doesn't tell doctors how to personalize their care to individual patients. Physicians' decisions need to be based on personal experience, clinical insights, and medical training.

Cell culture assay measures the net effect of all processes within the cancer, acting with and against each other in real time, and it tests living cells actually exposed to drugs and drug combinations of interest. Tens of thousands of individual patient specimens are currently being submitted for testing by more than 1,000 clinical oncologists, surgeons and pathologists annually in the U.S. It is certainly each practitioner's prerogative to order these tests. It seems probable that a self-educated oncologist, genuinely on the cutting-edge would tend to be aggressive in actual treatment beyond mere rhetoric, and make use of running tests on a "fresh" tumor specimen before selecting a chemotherapy option.

Gallion, H. H., W. A. Christopherson, et al. (Jan/Feb 2006). "Relationship between ex vivo chemosensitivity assay and progression free interval in ovarian cancer." International Journal of Gynecological Cancer

PubMed lists a paper that reports an increase from 35% to 65% response rate for recurrent ovarian cancer patients when cell culture assay tests were used to select the chemotherapy drugs. The P values (P=.005, etc.) given are measures of the statistical significance of the findings. The smaller the number, the higher the statistical significance. "P" refers to the probability that the finding is due to random chance. So, high P values are bad. P values of 5% or less are deemed to be statistically significant. All of the P values reported in this study indicate that the results are, indeeed, statistically significant.

(Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2003 Nov;189(5):1301-7)

Source: 
International Journal of Gynecological Cancer (IJGC)
Author/Speaker/Performer: 
Gallion, H. H., W. A. Christopherson, et al.

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