High levels of potassium inside tumors suppress immune activity

Posted: Sep 15, 2016

Nicholas P. Restifo, a senior investigator in CCR’s Surgery Branch and his team have discovered that an abundance of potassium inside tumors dampens immune responses, helping the tumors evade the body’s defenses. In animal experiments, genetically equipping immune cells rid themselves of potassium made them more effective at fighting cancer. The finding, published September 14, 2016, in the journal Nature, suggests a tactic for improving the effectiveness of cancer immunotherapies.  Learn more...

High levels of potassium inside tumors suppress immune activity

Targeting DNA repair proteins shown to prevent and shrink tumors

Posted: Sep 13, 2016

Andre Nussenzweig, NIH distinguished investigator and chief of the Laboratory of Genome Integrity, collaborated with a team to find new therapies for patients with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML). The team discovered that targeting the DNA repair proteins ATM/ATR kinases worked to prevent tumor formation and reduce tumors in established cancers in mouse models. Read more…

Targeting DNA repair proteins shown to prevent and shrink tumors

Study finds gene expression classifier for early stage squamous cell carcinoma

Posted: Sep 7, 2016

Senior Investigator and Chief of the Laboratory of Human Carcinogenesis Curt Harris has published a new study on squamous cell carcinoma and developing biomarkers that can identify high-risk early stage lung cancer patients. The group presents a prognostic classifier based on gene expression that can be used as a tool to guide clinical decisions. Learn more...

Study finds gene expression classifier for early stage squamous cell carcinoma

Study finds remarkable synergy between immunotoxins and actinomycin D

Posted: Sep 7, 2016

Ira Pastan, a senior investigator and co-chief of the Laboratory of Molecular Biology, together with a team of researchers, published a new study in PNAS evaluating Actinomycin D and the immunotoxin RG7787. Actinomycin D is a strong inhibitor used for treating many cancers, and the researchers found that when combined with RG7787, they acted together to kill a variety of cancer cell lines and shrink tumors in mice. These data strongly support the use of Actinomycin D to enhance immunotoxin action in humans. Read more…

Study finds remarkable synergy between immunotoxins and actinomycin D

Tumor DNA in blood may signal response to T-cell transfer immunotherapy

Posted: Sep 2, 2016

A pilot study by Steven Rosenberg (Surgery Branch) and Mark Raffeld (Laboratory of Pathology) suggests that tumor DNA circulating in the blood of patients with cancer might be a biological marker for determining, soon after the treatment has started, whether a form of immunotherapy is likely to work for a given patient. Learn more...

Tumor DNA in blood may signal response to T-cell transfer immunotherapy

Distinguished investigator Shiv Grewal discusses heterochromatin assembly

Posted: Sep 2, 2016

Shiv Grewal, an NCI Distinguished Investigator and Chief of the Laboratory of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, has spent most of his career researching heterochromatin and how it effects cell differentiation and adaptation. He has discovered that RNA plays a large role in targeting heterochromatin assembly and can be used as a targeting mechanism. He discusses those findings and what they mean for cancer research with Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America.  Learn more...

Distinguished investigator Shiv Grewal discusses heterochromatin assembly

CCR researcher finds oxygen can impair cancer immunotherapy in mice

Posted: Aug 25, 2016

Dr. Nicholas Restifo and his colleagues have identified a mechanism in mice by which anticancer immune responses are inhibited within the lungs, a common site of metastasis for many cancers. This mechanism involves oxygen inhibition of the anticancer activity of T cells. Inhibiting the oxygen-sensing capability of immune cells, either genetically or pharmacologically, prevented lung metastasis. Read more…

CCR researcher finds oxygen can impair cancer immunotherapy in mice

Seeking to unlock the genomic keys to ovarian cancer

Posted: Aug 22, 2016

CCR’s Tina Annunziata, physician scientist with the Women’s Malignancies Branch discusses genomic profiling in ovarian cancer in an interview in OncLive Read more...

Seeking to unlock the genomic keys to ovarian cancer

New immunotherapy gives tumor-fighting immune cells the chance to attack

Posted: Aug 18, 2016

Scientists at the National Cancer Institute’s Center for Cancer Research have empowered the immune systems of mice to rid their bodies of tumors with a new kind of immunotherapy.

New immunotherapy gives tumor-fighting immune cells the chance to attack

PARP inhibitors may affect normal cells in patients with a BRCA mutation

Posted: Aug 8, 2016

PARP inhibition has been approved for treatment of advanced ovarian cancer with BRAC1 and BRAC2 mutations and is being studied in the treatment advanced breast, colorectal, and prostate cancer.  A new study by Center for Cancer Research scientists in the Mouse Cancer Genetics Program and the Laboratory of Genome Integrity, raises concerns that when cancer patients with a BRCA mutation are treated with PARP inhibitors their normal cells may also be affected.  

PARP inhibitors may affect normal cells in patients with a BRCA mutation

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