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This Week in Cancer Research: Dec 9, 2011

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Published online in advance in Cancer Research this week, a team of US researchers reports its method of classifying human brain tumors using lipid imaging with mass spectrometry. The team performed desorption electrospray mass spectrometry, or DESI-MS, on 36 human glioma samples. "Classifiers for subtype, grade and concentration features generated with lipidomic data showed high recognition capability with [greater than] 97 percent cross-validation," the authors write. "Together, our findings offer proof of concept that intra-operative examination and classification of brain tissue by mass spectrometry can provide surgeons, pathologists, and oncologists with critical and previously unavailable information to rapidly guide surgical resections that can improve management of patients with malignant brain tumors."

Also published online in advance in Cancer Research this week, researchers in Israel report their method for in vivo MRI of the estrogen receptor in an orthotopic model of human breast cancer. The team examined novel ER-targeted contrast agents in ER-positive and ER-negative tumors, and found that one in particular, EPTA-Gd, interacted with ER in a way that could differentiate ER-positive and ER-negative tumors with MRI. "In vivo competition experiments confirmed that the enhanced detection capability of EPTA-Gd was based specifically on ER targeting," the authors write. "These results define a novel MRI probe that can permit selective noninvasive imaging of ER-positive tumors in vivo."

Finally online in advance in Cancer Research this week, researchers at Stony Brook University in New York elucidate the possible chemotherapeutic properties of phospho-non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. These novel phospho-NSAIDs inhibited the growth of human breast, colon, and pancreatic cancer cell lines and inhibited tumor growth in human xenograft models. "Taken together, our findings show the strong anticancer efficacy and promising safety of phospho-NSAIDs in preclinical models of breast, colon, and pancreatic cancer, suggesting further evaluation as anticancer agents," the authors write.

The Scan

Support for Moderna Booster

An FDA advisory committee supports authorizing a booster for Moderna's SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, CNN reports.

Testing at UK Lab Suspended

SARS-CoV-2 testing at a UK lab has been suspended following a number of false negative results.

J&J CSO to Step Down

The Wall Street Journal reports that Paul Stoffels will be stepping down as chief scientific officer at Johnson & Johnson by the end of the year.

Science Papers Present Proteo-Genomic Map of Human Health, Brain Tumor Target, Tool to Infer CNVs

In Science this week: gene-protein-disease map, epigenomic and transcriptomic approach highlights potential therapeutic target for gliomas, and more