Yale enhances its cytometry capabilities
The methods and equipment used to probe cellular questions are rapidly advancing—including, at Yale, through the addition in 2014 of CyTOF, or Cytometry Time-Of-Flight, and this past June of the CyTOF Imaging Mass Cytometer (IMC), which greatly expands Yale's ability to examine specimens that are analyzed both for clinical diagnosis and for basic research.
Yale doctor creates new weapons to kill cancer
The battle against cancer is increasingly being fought on the genetic level, and Dr. Samuel Katz is aiding the body’s immune system by creating safer, more effective weapons. His research is focused on treating cancers of the blood, such as multiple myeloma, Hodgkin’s lymphoma and acute myeloid leukemia, but his technique could eventually be used against solid tumors as well, including cancers of the breast, ovary, pancreas and colon. Most gene therapy uses genetically modified DNA in the body’s T lymphocytes — a type of white blood cell that is an integral part of the body’s immune system — to find, attack and kill cancer cells.
Promising Yale cancer research supported by Stamford based non-profit leading charge in gene therapy studies
Support from ACGT has Dr. Samuel Katz at Yale School of Medicine refining the current research. He is reprogramming cells, with RNA, the genetic material that delivers the message, to destroy the cancerous ones — acting as soldiers in battle, if you will. “We give them the message,” says Dr. Katz, “and then the message goes away, and when the soldier is done with his job he returns back to normal.” If successful, this approach will make safer and stronger cells – a super-soldier that reintegrates into society when the war is won.
Limiting lung cancer’s spread and growth in the brain
More people die of lung cancer each year than breast, colon, and prostate cancers combined. One particularly lethal form of the disease is lung adenocarcinoma or LUAD, which afflicts both smokers and non-smokers. In many patients diagnosed with LUAD, tumors cells have already spread to the brain, leading to decreased quality of life and low survival rates. A Yale Cancer Center research team conducted a study to determine how those tumor cells manage to grow outside the lungs.
Researchers at Yale have taken steps toward a ‘completely unexpected’ new way to treat brain cancer
Researchers at Yale think they've come up with a new way to treat a certain kind of brain tumor using a drug that's already been approved by the FDA. In a study published Wednesday in the journal Science Translational Medicine, the researchers outline a hypothesis for using the drug to tackle brain cancer. Thing is, the hypothesis they put forward is the exact opposite of the one other scientists, as well as several drug companies including Agios Pharmaceuticals, had previously been working with. The drug they discuss, called a PARP inhibitor, blocks a protein our cells use to repair DNA and kill off tumors. In certain kinds of cancer, that repair system is broken, which allows cancer cells to thrive.
Yale scientists identify key defect in brain tumor cells
In a new study, Yale Cancer Center researchers identified a novel genetic defect that prevents brain tumor cells from repairing damaged DNA. They found that the defect is highly sensitive to an existing FDA-approved drug used to treat ovarian cancer — a discovery that challenges current practice for treatment of brain tumors and other cancers with the same genetic defect, said the scientists.
Dr. Rimm on Biomarker Testing in Lung Cancer
David L. Rimm, MD, PhD, professor of pathology and of medicine, director of pathology tissue services, director of translational pathology, Yale Cancer Center, discusses various options for biomarker testing in lung cancer. Genomics testing involves an examination of the mutational or neoantigen load, explains Rimm. While this assay does select patients with a high mutational load, Rimm feels that this method is insufficiently sensitive, such that it misses those patients who may not have a high mutational load, but would still benefit from therapy. Rimm is more optimistic about another form of biomarker testing, which involves looking at the immune cell microenvironment. In this method, one can measure the distribution and properties of T-cells determined by coexpression of other markers.
Trace elements: Innovative biopsy programs map how cancer spreads
When doctors do take biopsies, they want to do so in a way that is safest for patients, says Roy Herbst, a lung cancer oncologist at the Yale School of Medicine in New Haven. In lung cancer, for example, the oncologist might choose not to take biopsies of metastases from the liver, because these extra biopsies could lead to bleeding complications. “Remember, you are sticking a needle through the skin using guided imaging for most of these,” Herbst says.
Yale Cancer Center researchers win Sokoloff Family-Melanoma Research Alliance team science award
A new approach to understanding why T-cells are often too weak to fight and destroy tumor cells has earned Yale Cancer Center researchers team science award from the Sokoloff Family-Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA).
Center provides researchers access to highly specialized tools
If a researcher needs highly the specialized expertise and equipment required to investigate a blood disease, where does she go? Answer: the Yale Cooperative Center of Excellence in Hematology Specialized Core Center (YCCEH). The National Institutes of Health has designated Yale as one of three universities nationwide to receive a $5 million, five-year grant. The others include the University of Washington and Indiana University.
Research in the news: Yale study pinpoints key genetic factor behind autoimmune diseases, cancer
Scientists have long known that variations in specific human genes are associated with distinct patterns of disease, but an understanding of the molecular mechanisms has remained elusive until now. A team of Yale researchers has untangled that mystery for a key immune response gene, a discovery which could lead to more personalized treatment for conditions such as lupus and cancer.