Cancer Biology
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Scooped by Bryan DeWitt
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Antiviral enzyme contributes to several forms of cancer - Medical Xpress

Antiviral enzyme contributes to several forms of cancer - Medical Xpress | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it
Antiviral enzyme contributes to several forms of cancer Medical Xpress Harris is a professor in the Department of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics, which is a joint department of the College of Biological Sciences and the Medical...
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Much of what I have discussed here is about cancer treatment, not so much abbout what causes cancer. This article discusses the role of an antiviral enzyme and cancer development (oncogenesis). This article would lead to a discussion about how cancers develop and the research that tells us how cancers develop. Many students miss the link between what is in their textbooks and how it got there. Everything in a science textbook was discovered by a scientist at some point, yet research isn't discussed much in high school classrooms. Articles like this one help to bridge the gap between the science classroom and science research. In a flipped classroom, I would ask students to read this article and be prepared to discuss the article, as well as how research is used to broaden our scientific knowledge. While it's likely that students will have heard of some of the terminology in the article, front-loading would be required so that students know what those vocabulary words mean. I scopped this article because it is brief, interesting, and relevant to students as it shows how scientists determine a potential cause of cancer. Finally, in a discussion, we would discuss the potential future for this research. How could this discovery lead to a small molecule inhibitor to treat cancer?

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Rescooped by Bryan DeWitt from Help and Support everybody around the world
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Princeton University Molecular Biology - Breast cancer indicator protein discovered, U. researchers say

Princeton University Molecular Biology - Breast cancer indicator protein discovered, U. researchers say | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it

University researchers have discovered a protein that controls tumors in breast cancer, a possible path toward the diagnosis and treatment of the disease. The lactation protein, known as Elf5, inhibits metastasis, the spread of the disease to other organs.

“The same protein that controls milk production also protects us from developing invasive breast cancer,” molecular biology professor Yibin Kang explained. Kang was a co-author of the study, which was conducted at labs at Princeton and the University of Buffalo and was featured as the cover paper in this month’s issue of Nature Cell Biology.

“We shot high and were very lucky to be published in the first journal we submitted to,” said Julie Hwang ’13, an undergraduate researcher at Kang’s lab and a co-author of the paper.

Kang and Hwang worked with the paper's lead author, Princeton associate research scholar Rumela Chakrabarti. Chakrabarti originally conducted research at UB with biochemistry professor Satrajit Sinha, who was another co-author on the paper. Chakrabarti left UB to take a position in Kang’s lab while researching together with Kang on the breast cancer study...


Via Ricard Lloria
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Like prostate cancer, breast cancer affects a large percentage of the population, and many students probably know someone who has been affected by breast cancer. While there is a large amount of funding that supports breast cancer research, the five-year survival is still approximately 80%, that is, 80% of women diagnosed will survive five years. In addition, this article highlights on an aspect of biology that isn't commonly associated with molecular biology: developmental biology. Here, scientists have identified a protein that inhibits metastasis (cancer cell migration and invasion). The article discusses "real" research that is performed at a premier institution in an approachable way and is also interesting to students because so many people are affected by breast cancer. The article is concise and well-written, and would not require much front-loading. I believe that students will become more interested in the sciences once they see that research is approachable and relevant to their daily lives. 

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Rescooped by Bryan DeWitt from Prostate Cancer Research Digest
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Current management of prostate cancer: dilemmas and trials

The past decade has witnessed significant advances in our understanding of the biology of prostate cancer. Androgen ablation/androgen receptor inhibition remains as the mainstay of treatment for advanced prostate cancer. Our understanding of the biology of prostate cancer has increased exponentially owing to advances in molecular biology. With this knowledge many intriguing issues have come to light, which clinicians and scientists alike strive to answer. These include why prostate cancer is so common, what drives the development of prostate cancer at a molecular level, why prostate cancer appears refractory to many families of cytotoxic chemotherapeutics, and why prostate cancer preferentially metastasizes to bone. Two clinical forms of prostate cancer have been identified: indolent organ confined disease, which elderly men often die of, and aggressive metastatic disease. A method of distinguishing between these two forms of the disease at an organ-confined stage remains elusive. Understanding the mechanisms of castrate resistance is a further issue of clinical importance. New trials of treatments, including molecular agents that target prostate cancer from a range of angles, have been instituted over the past 10–15 years. We can look at these trials not only as a chance to investigate the effectiveness of new treatments but also as an opportunity to further understand the complex biology of this disease.

 

British Journal of Radiology (2012) 85, S28-S40
© 2012 British Institute of Radiology
doi: 10.1259/bjr/13017671


Via Cancer Commons
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

This is an abstract to a full review article discussing prostate cancer. There are many things that students can learn from this article. First and foremost, not everything that is published is new research. Many articles are "review" articles and they serve the purpose to analyze much of the research in a particular field over decades and discuss problems and solutions. Review articles are critically important to the sciences, and some believe that the true measure of the success of a scientist is the quality of the review articles that they write. Only the best scientists in the world write and publish high quality review articles. In addition, prostate cancer is very common among men, and students may find an overview of prostate cancer very interesting. While prostate cancer has a very high survival rate, research in prostate cancer is important because it affects a high percentage of men. I scopped this article to show the importance of a review article and to provide students an opportunity to learn more about prostate cancer, a very common cancer. 

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Institute Assoc Scientist III - Molecular Biology : Houston, TX, United States : Naturejobs

Institute Assoc Scientist III - Molecular Biology - MD Anderson Cancer Center are looking for a Senior Scientist in Houston, TX, United States.
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Not all jobs in molecular/cancer biology require a Ph.D. This article published a job opening in Houston, TX for someone with a BS (Bachelor of Science) in the field of Biomedical Sciences. This article discusses the job and requirements for someone to obtain this job. Students who are interested in future careers in Biomedical Sciences would likely find this article interesting and relevant. High school students who want to research but do not want to earn a Ph.D. could begin to develop a career trajectory and ensure that they take specific and relevant advanced high school and college courses to prepare them for this line of work. I scopped this so that students could understand not only what scientists do, but how they could find a job. 

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Key step in molecular 'dance' that duplicates DNA deciphered - EurekAlert (press release)

Key step in molecular 'dance' that duplicates DNA deciphered - EurekAlert (press release) | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it
Key step in molecular 'dance' that duplicates DNA deciphered EurekAlert (press release) Details of the research, published in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology, enhance understanding of an essential biological process and may...
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Even in an introductory Biology course, students learn that helicase is the enzyme responsible for unwinding the DNA double helix to prepare for duplication. This article highlights on the importance and relevance of DNA duplication in a research setting (Cancer) and speaks to the importance of collaboration. There is a misconception amongst students that scientists work alone, and this couldn't be further from the truth. Scientists work together regularly and assist one another with their research. I scopped this article to show the role of collaboration in research and to allow students who are interested in DNA duplication a way to explore and develop their interests. This article is advanced for a high school student and would require front-loading if the student wanted to fully understand the article. 

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Cancer research brief: Targeting pancreatic cancer drug resistance - EurekAlert (press release)

Cancer research brief: Targeting pancreatic cancer drug resistance EurekAlert (press release) Molecules in the milieu around the cancer cells, such as Connective Tissue Growth Factor (CTGF), provide "pro-life" signals that overcome the killing...
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Pancreatic cancer is among the most lethal of cancers with only approximately 6% of patients surviving five years. To date, there is not a "cure" for pancreatic cancer, and it also remains largely under-funded. This brief article addresses several aspects of cancer biology: it provides an insight to the molecular nature of cancer and demonstrates how molecular targets may be used as a drug therapy to treat the cancer. In addition, this article is brief, and although it uses advanced scientific terminology, it provides definitions that will assist in student comprehension. I chose this article because it is interesting, relevant, and applicable to student lives and provides insight as to how scientists use molecular biology to develop treatments to disease. This is an appropriate way to integrate real research into the classroom and the article shows what "real scientists" research. 

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Cancer Research Technology teams with Forma for DUB exploration - PharmaTimes

Cancer Research Technology teams with Forma for DUB exploration - PharmaTimes | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it
Cancer Research Technology teams with Forma for DUB exploration PharmaTimes Cancer Research Technology (CRT), the commercialisation and development arm of Cancer Research UK, has formed an alliance with FormaTherapeutics, a US-based company focused...
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

As I've stated, collaboration is key to scientific discovery, and so is money. This article discusses how both of those aspects work together for scientific discovery. In addition, the article discusses "small molecules." "Small molecules" is essentially another name for a drug. In the beginning stages of drug development, a small molecule is developed for a specific purpose. As preliminary data demonstrates the potential for the small molecule, it may be further developed into a drug. It takes over a decade and billions of dollars to develop a drug to the market due to the drug trials and animal studies. I scooped this because I think that students will be interested in drug development, as many students have taken prescription drugs at some point in their lives. Additionally, this provides insight as to how critical money and collaboration are to the field of research and development. This article wouldn't require much front-loading, but would hopefully result in a discussion about drug development and the role of money and collaboration in research. 

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Rescooped by Bryan DeWitt from Science&Nature
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Cellular eavesdropping made easy: New method for identifying and measuring secreted proteins over time

Cellular eavesdropping made easy: New method for identifying and measuring secreted proteins over time | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it

(Phys.org)—It is much harder to keep up with a conversation in a crowded bar than in a quiet little café, but scientists wishing to eavesdrop on cells can now do so over the laboratory equivalent of a noisy room. A new method devised by scientists at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in collaboration with the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ), both in Heidelberg, Germany, provides a new approach for studying the proteins cells release to communicate with each other, react to changes, or even to help them move. Published online today in Nature Biotechnology, the work also opens new avenues for drug and biomarker screening.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2012-09-cellular-eavesdropping-easy-method-secreted.html#jCp


Via Laran
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

First and foremost, the article has a very catchy title! What high school student isn't interested in "creeping?" Many people believe that only biologists research cancer. While much of the research in cancer is performed by biologists, physicists as well as chemists contribute a great deal to the field of molecular biology. The article highlights the importance of biomarkers, that is, how a protein (usually) can be used to diagnose disease or a particular aspect of the disease. Here, the biomarker discussed is about migration, how a cancer cell moves from one place in the body to another. I scopped this article so that students could read about a hot area in research (biomarkers) and because I believe that students will find the article interesting. The article would require some front-loading as students will have a difficult time with some of the vocabulary. 

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Exclusive: Cancer - A cure just got closer thanks to a tiny British company ... - The Independent

Exclusive: Cancer - A cure just got closer thanks to a tiny British company ... - The Independent | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it
Exclusive: Cancer - A cure just got closer thanks to a tiny British company ...
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

A lot of students think that research only occurs at large research institutions or pharmaceutical companies. Not so! This article discusses a small start-up biotech company and how their research has uncovered potential cancer treatments. In addition, there is also a misconception that immunology, the study of the immune system, is only related to bacteria and viruses. The immune system plays a crucial role in fighting off cancer cells. This article provides a helpful and approachable figure to help students understand how the immune system is important in cancer biology. Additionally, the article discusses the research that can occur outside of a large institution such as a pharmaceutical company or research university. Small biotech companies also employ many young scientists, so this could be applicable as students who are interested in molecular biology develop their career path. I scooped this so that students can appreciate the role of all research in cancer biology. 

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Hershey Med researchers say new treatments possible for colon cancer - Lebanon Daily News

Hershey Med researchers say new treatments possible for colon cancer - Lebanon Daily News | Cancer Biology | Scoop.it
Hershey Med researchers say new treatments possible for colon cancer
Lebanon Daily News
Previous research shows that km23-1 is involved in the movement of cancer cells and in the control of specific proteins at the leading edge of moving cells.
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Cancer metastasis, or how cancer cells migrate to invade surrounding tissue, is and interesting and hot topic in the field of cancer biology. Colon cancer is not only common, it is also fairly lethal. According to this article, scientists have uncovered a key protein that assists with the metastasis of colon cancer cells, and it could provide insight to potential therapeutic drugs in the future. As a result of reading this article, students will be able to determine how scientists uncover key proteins in metastasis. I chose this article because it is interesting, brief, relevant, and approachable for students. If I were to assign this article, I would likely front-load instruction by discussing colon cancer and the basic molecular mechanisms of metastasis. 

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Postdoctoral Position in Molecular Biology and Drug Discovery : Tampa, FL, United States : Naturejobs

Postdoctoral Position in Molecular Biology and Drug Discovery - Moffitt Cancer Center & Research Institute are looking for a Postdoctoral in Tampa, FL, United States.
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

Many students ask "what can I do with this information" or "what does a scientist actually do?" This is a link to a job opening for a post-doctoral fellow in South Florida at one of the premier research institutions in the United States. Once scientists earn a Ph.D., they typically find a "post-doc" in which they can develop their research independence by working with a faculty member who is well-established in their field of interest. My sister-in-law is a post-doctoral fellow at the IU School of Medicine where she is researching cancer implications of HPV. This link answers several student questions and allows students to understand what training is required to obtain their first job once they have finished a Ph.D. While high school students are far away from obtaining a Ph.D., this link helps students to develop a career trajectory. 

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http://www.pdfone.com/view/19_molecular-biology-introduction/cancer-molecular-amp-amp-cellular-biology-laboratory.html

Free Ebook Cancer - Molecular & Cellular Biology Laboratory view file http://t.co/gebNE5p3JD
Bryan DeWitt's insight:

This appears to be a powerpoint presentation about the basic molecular biological aspects of cancer. The handout includes aspects of molecular biology and genetics including mutations and the roles of certain genes, as well as some basic information about the impact of cancer on society. While advanced for high school students, it will provide background into the molecular nature of cancer and could serve as a beginning place for additional student-directed research. I scopped this because it is reasonable length, approachable, and provides background to an interesting and relevant aspect of biology and society in general. 

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