National Cancer Institute

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$3.6 Million to Fund Personalized 3-D Brain Maps to Guide Neurosurgeries

Press Release | Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis | April 4, 2017

Neurosurgeons must avoid cutting into parts of the brain responsible for key functions such as language (orange) and vision (green), but individuals vary in where such functions are located (each of the top images compared with the bottom images above). Researchers are creating a software program that uses data from MRI scans to create personalized anatomic and functional brain maps and integrate them into a navigational system to guide physicians during neurosurgery. Removing a brain tumor requires walking a fine line: Remove too little, and the disease remains; remove too much, and sight, speech or movement may be impaired...

Biden Gives a Peek at What’s to Come for Cancer Moonshot

Anna Edney | Bloomberg Politics | June 29, 2016

A corporate-government partnership to improve U.S. veterans’ access to personalized cancer treatments will highlight a nationwide series of gatherings and events Wednesday detailing of Vice President Joe Biden’s “Cancer Moonshot” program. IBM Corp. will donate access to its “Watson” supercomputer -- best known for beating human champions on the television game show “Jeopardy!” -- to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The supercomputer will help provide facilitate oncology treatment for those who have served in the U.S. military, according to a statement from the White House...

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Genomic Data Commons Heralds New Era of Data Sharing for Cancer Research

Press Release | University of Chicago | June 6, 2016


The Genomic Data Commons, a next-generation platform that enables unprecedented data access, analysis and sharing for cancer research, publicly launched at the University of Chicago on June 6, opening the door to discoveries for this complex set of diseases. The Genomic Data Commons went live with approximately 4.1 petabytes of data from National Cancer Institute-supported research programs, including some of the largest and most comprehensive cancer genomics datasets in the world...

New Imaging Technique Overturns Longstanding Textbook Model of DNA Folding

Press Release | National Institutes of Health | July 27, 2017

How can six and half feet of DNA be folded into the tiny nucleus of a cell? Researchers funded by the National Institutes of Health have developed a new imaging method that visualizes a very different DNA structure, featuring small folds of DNA in close proximity. The study reveals that the DNA-protein structure, known as chromatin, is a much more diverse and flexible chain than previously thought. This provides exciting new insights into how chromatin directs a nimbler interaction between different genes to regulate gene expression, and provides a mechanism for chemical modifications of DNA to be maintained as cells divide...

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Obama Administration Announces Key Actions to Accelerate Precision Medicine Initiative

Press Release | The White House | February 25, 2016

A year ago the President announced the launch of the Precision Medicine Initiative to accelerate a new era of medicine that delivers the right treatment at the right time to the right person, taking into account individuals’ health history, genes, environments, and lifestyles. Precision medicine is already transforming the way diseases like cancer and mental health conditions are treated. Molecular testing for cancer patients lets physicians and patients select treatments that improve chances of survival and reduce adverse effects...

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The $100,000-Per-Year Pill: How US Health Agencies Choose Pharma Over Patients

Fran Quigley | TruthOut | August 5, 2016

Don Reichmuth survived prostate cancer once before, back in 2007, so his physician was concerned when tests recently revealed the cancer had returned. Reichmuth's physician prescribed a drug called enzalutamide, marketed by the Japanese company Astellas Pharma, Inc. under the brand name Xtandi. But when the physician sent the prescription to the pharmacy, the managers of Reichmuth's insurance plan sent back an immediate refusal to approve it. Reichmuth, a retired teacher who lives in Washington State, was puzzled by the logic. Then he learned the price of the Xtandi prescription: over $9,700 each month...

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VA using big data to improve health care delivery

Press Release | US Department of Veterans Affairs | March 24, 2016

Using health data to understand disease and wellness as well as the best treatment and prevention options forpatients, is critical for improving care. That’s why VA is partnering with the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Strategic Scientific Initiatives to use “big data” to advance favorable outcomes in patient care. “Big data” in health care is a term used to describe complex and very large data sets that have evolved since the inception of electronic health records.

What Clinical Trial Results? Now You Can See Who Isn’t Sharing Their Findings

Ed Silverman | STAT | November 3, 2016

The results for nearly half of all clinical trials conducted by big drug makers during the last decade have not been published, and one company — Ranbaxy Laboratories — has not published findings for any of the nearly three dozen trials conducted in the past 10 years, according to a new online tool. The tool was launched Thursday by AllTrials, a consortium of researchers and medical journals that has been pushing the pharmaceutical industry to do a better job of disclosing clinical trial data...

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