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This Week in Clinical Cancer Research: Jul 5, 2012


In a paper published online in advance in Clinical Cancer Research, an international team led by investigators at VU University Medical Center in The Netherlands presents a meta-analysis of mouse and human medulloblastoma gene expression data. The researchers show that expression of the RAS-GTPase-activating protein family member DAB2IP is repressed in medulloblastoma by EZH2-induced trimethylation. They also say that "DAB2IP may represent a molecular marker to distinguish patients with medulloblastoma at high risk from those with a longer survival prognosis."

Elsewhere in the journal, researchers in Japan show that the amount of Epstein-Barr virus DNA detected in whole blood samples from patients with extranodal NK/T-cell lymphoma, nasal type, is "useful for predicting tumor response, toxicity, and prognosis after SMILE [steroid, methotrexate, ifosfamide, L-asparaginase, and etoposide] chemotherapy."

Finally, writing in Clinical Cancer Research, scientists from the New York University School of Medicine show that topical imiquimod is a well-tolerated and beneficial treatment modality for breast cancer metastatic to skin/chest wall, and that the drug "can promote a pro-immunogenic tumor microenvironment in breast cancer." The NYU team adds that preclinical data is has generated suggests superior results might be achieved with a combination of imiquimod and ionizing radiation. "We are currently testing in patients whether the combination can further improve anti-tumor immune and clinical responses," the researchers add.

The Scan

mRNA-Based Vaccine on the Way in China

China may soon have its own mRNA-based vaccine, according to Nature News.

Arranged Killing, Fraud Alleged by Prosecutors

The Wall Street Journal reports that prosecutors allege that the co-founder of a biotech arranged to have a business associate who threatened to expose him as a fraud killed.

Whirlwind Decade of CRISPR

The New York Times looks back at the 10 years since the University of California, Berkeley's Jennifer Doudna and her colleagues published their CRISPR paper.

PNAS Papers on Blue Cone Monochromacy Structural Variants, HIV-1 Mutant, T-ALL

In PNAS this week: structural variants linked to blue cone monochromacy, HIV-1 variants affecting the matrix protein p17, and more.