Cancer Research

I think, after 2 and a half months of blogging, it's time to tell you my dream. I'm nearly sure about that this dream wouldn't come true in my lifetime. I dream about a total screening for genetic conditions and diseases. When you are born, your DNA is screened for well-known variations and gene abnormalities. These variations lead to increased risk for some kind of diseases.

For the first time, scientists have observed DNA being damaged by ultraviolet (UV) light.

Ohio State University chemists and their colleagues in Germany used a special technique to watch strands of DNA in the laboratory sustain damage in real time.

They observed the most common chemical reaction among a family of reactions on the DNA molecule that are linked to sunburn, and discovered that this key reaction happens with astounding speed -- in less than one picosecond, or one millionth of one millionth of a second.


An undamaged stack of thymine bases is colored green in the DNA double helix on the left.

 HopeLab is a non-profit organization that combines rigorous research with innovative solutions to improve the health and quality of life of young people with chronic illness. What does it mean? They've created a PC-based video game, Re-Mission which is a 3D shooter with 20 levels that takes the player on a journey through the bodies of young patients with different kinds of cancer.

Instead of dismissing grumblings about being tired or exhausted, people should take these complaints seriously before they lead to a worsened health state or even death, says a University of Alberta researcher investigating fatigue.

Dr. Karin Olson, a U of A professor from the Faculty of Nursing, argues that there are differences between tiredness, fatigue and exhaustion and that recognizing those distinctions will help health-care workers create better treatment plans for their patients.

Garlic has been hailed a wonder drug for centuries and has been used to prevent gangrene, treat high blood pressure, ward off common colds and is even believed by some to have cancer-fighting properties.

Now, scientists at The University of Nottingham are leading a new pilot study to see if the pungent bulb could also hold the key to preventing cystic fibrosis patients from falling foul of a potentially-fatal infection.

The research will look at whether taking garlic capsules can disrupt the communication system of the pathogen Pseudomonas to prevent illness from taking hold.

A breast cancer treatment based on MIT research originally intended for detecting missiles is documented in a new book by Alan J. Fenn, an MIT researcher and inventor of the technique.


Image at left shows process of detecting and destroying an enemy missile using MIT targeted radar. Microwave energy is fixed on a missile while simultaneously nullifying enemy jammers. On right, microwave energy is aimed at a cancerous tumor with a deep focused beam while simultaneously nullifying any energy that would overheat surrounding healthy tissue. (Image courtesy of Lincoln Laboratory_

What do red grapes, white onions, green and black teas and blackeye cowpeas all have in common? In addition to vitamins and minerals, these plant foods are rich in a class of chemical compounds called flavonoids.

The first update of the USDA Database for the Flavonoid Content of Selected Foods, Release 2, is now available. The new release provides analytical values for 26 selected flavonoid compounds in 393 foods.

For the update, scientists with the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) analyzed the flavonoids in nearly 60 representative fruits, nuts and vegetables taken from a nationwide sampling.

Second-hand smoke, also known as environmental tobacco smoke or ETS, is clearly associated with cancer, respiratory and cardiovascular disease in humans. Several studies have shown that up to 20 different carcinogens contained in tobacco smoke can be inhaled by non-smoking bystanders.

Dr. Timothy Fan, veterinary oncologist at the University of Illinois Veterinary Teaching Hospital in Urbana, explains that although associations between ETS and diseases in animals have not been as extensively researched, a handful of studies show a correlation between ETS and certain forms of cancer in pets.