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Adjuvant radiotherapy may benefit patients with lymph node-positive vulvar cancer
Healio
Adjuvant radiotherapy may provide survival benefits for patients with lymph node-positive vulvar cancer, according to study results. Vulvar cancer is a rare disease, but its incidence has been rising, leading to interest in improving therapy options, according to researchers. The prognosis for patients with vulvar cancer is primarily determined by the status of the lymph nodes. Lymph node-negative patients have substantially better outcomes than node-positive patients.
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SGO NEWS


SGO open election ends Feb. 13
The 2015 SGO Board of Directors and Foundation Council open election is now under way. All SGO members who are eligible to vote should have received an email from noreply@directvote.net on Monday, Jan. 12. The list of candidates for each position, including biographical information, personal statements and photos, is available for your consideration. Please take some time to review the candidates’ statements prior to casting your vote. Candidate information is also available on the ballot. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. CST on Friday, Feb. 13.
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GENETICS


A never-ending genetic quest
The New York Times
There has never been a scientific career quite like Mary-Claire King’s. Years ago, her doctoral thesis concluded that humans and chimpanzees were, genetically speaking, 99 percent the same — a revolutionary thought. Her later work on human cancers resulted in the discovery of the so-called breast cancer gene, BRCA1, which transformed the diagnosis and treatment of the disease.
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OVARIAN CANCER


Study describes novel screening system that has potential to uncover effective ovarian cancer drugs
News-Medical
University of Chicago Medicine researchers have built a model system that uses multiple cell types from patients to rapidly test compounds that could block the early steps in ovarian cancer metastasis. Their three-dimensional cell-culture system, adapted for high-throughput screening, has enabled them to identify small molecules that can inhibit adhesion and invasion, preventing ovarian cancers from spreading to nearby tissues. The study, published online Feb. 5, in the journal Nature Communications, is the first to describe a high-throughput screening drug-discovery platform for ovarian cancer that mimics the structural organization and function of human tissue.
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Chemotherapy regimens for ovarian cancer
OncLive
The standard chemotherapy regimen used to treat patients with ovarian cancer (carboplatin and paclitaxel administered every 3 weeks) was established based on results from the Gynecologic Oncology Group (GOG) 111 and GOG-158 studies. The Japanese GOG (JGOG) phase III trial compared a dose-dense regimen administered once weekly with the standard regimen administered every 3 weeks. Results from this analysis showed an impressive survival advantage with the dose-dense regimen, notes Michael J. Birrer, MD. However, the JGOG trial was a small study in an ethnically different population, and thus the results may not be generalizable to patients in the U.S., comments Birrer. Also, there were concerns about the potential for neuropathy and myelosuppression in the U.S. patient population
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LYNCH SYNDROME


High risk of bowel cancer for gene carriers
Medical Xpress
Researchers from the University of Melbourne have found that screening for bowel cancer in genetically high-risk populations should begin early. The team led by Professor Mark Jenkins, Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Population and Global Health found that people with a mutation that results in Lynch syndrome have a five year risk of bowel cancer up to hundreds of times greater than the average risk. The findings recently published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology support this recommendation for screening from age 30 years.
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TREATMENT


Clinical signs for impending death in cancer patients identified
Medical News Today
While many would rather not think about when someone might die, knowing how much longer a seriously ill person has left to live can be very useful for managing how they spend their final days. Researchers have now revealed eight signs in patients with advanced cancer associated with death within 3 days.
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HEALTH POLICY


FDA Commissioner leaving after 6 years of breakneck changes
The New York Times
Dr. Margaret Hamburg, the commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, who led the agency for nearly six years through a period of rapid change in medical science, announced Feb. 5 that she was stepping down. Dr. Hamburg, 59, told colleagues in an email that she would depart at the end of March. She said in a telephone interview that she had never expected to stay as long as she did but had kept finding issues she wanted to shape and problems she wanted to help solve. She said she was particularly proud of her role in modernizing how the agency regulated the safety of food and drugs coming from other countries.
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BREAST CANCER


Breast cancer: 2 new genetic risk factors uncovered
Medical News Today
Collaboration between dozens of worldwide cancer research institutes has added to the ever-improving understanding of breast cancer genetics and personal profiling of the disease by unearthing two new genetic variants associated with a higher risk for the women carrying them. The two genetic susceptibility biomarkers identified by the huge study are specific to a type of hormone-dependent breast cancer - estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer, the most common form. The newly uncovered genetic variants provide clues about how this breast cancer develops, and also represent factors that could be used to screen for the women who are at the highest risk. Presented in the journal Human Molecular Genetics, the analysis used the DNA of around 86,000 women of European ancestry, 12,000 of Asian, and 2,000 of African ancestry. About half of the women under analysis had breast cancer.
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Nab-paclitaxel faces off against paclitaxel presurgery
Clinical Oncology
Using nanoparticle albumin-bound (nab)-paclitaxel rather than paclitaxel in a presurgery chemotherapy regimen for patients with early-stage breast cancer increased the pathologic complete response (pCR) rate by 10 percent during the German GeparSepto trial. “Long-term follow-up is needed to validate if the increase in pCR rate translates into a better disease-free and overall survival,” said principal investigator Michael Untch, MD, PhD, the chief of the Clinic for Gynecology, Gynecologic Oncology and Obstetrics and the head of the Multidisciplinary Breast Cancer Center at the Helios Clinic in Berlin-Buch, Germany.
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Women's Cancer News
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Jessica Taylor, Senior Medical Editor, 202-684-7169  
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