Blackberries as a business

4/30/2007 Lexington, KY Karla Ward A local company with ties to the University of Kentucky plans to market a dietary supplement, skin cream and chewing gum based on blackberry extract. Paige Shumate Short, a Paris businesswoman, and Russell Mumper, a UK researcher, are the co-founders of Four Tigers LLC, which Short calls a "berryceutical" company. In the near future, they hope to find licensing partners -- maybe a chewing gum company such as Wrigley or a supplement supplier such as GNC Ð to sell their over-the-counter products, which will not require Food and Drug Administration approval. Short's father, the late Wayne Shumate, began growing antioxidant-rich blackberries at WindStone Farms in Paris more than two decades ago, and Four Tigers now has an exclusive partnership with the farm. In the longer term, Short and Mumper hope to use the revenue stream from their supplement, gum and cream to develop FDA-approved drugs that incorporate blackberry extract. Studies have found berries are full of powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. In an early study, Mumper found that the extract stopped the growth of colon cancer cells in a petri dish, but much more research would have to be done to determine whether the same would be true of cancer cells in the human body. Short said the company's "pot of gold" would be an injectable drug. While eating blackberries is healthful, the body does not absorb them well, and Mumper said "you've got to eat a lot of berries to give you an [...]

2009-04-15T12:03:08-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Consumption of areca quid, cigarettes, and alcohol related to the comorbidity of oral submucous fibrosis and oral cancer

4/30/2007 web-based article Pei-Shan Ho et al. Oral Surg Oral Med Oral Pathol Oral Radiol Endod, April 20, 2007 Objective: Oral submucous fibrosis (OSF) is defined as a precancerous condition, and it is also commonly seen in clinical practice, coexisting with oral cancer. The aim of this study was to identify the effects of areca quid, cigarette, and alcohol on the coexistence of oral cancer and OSF. Study Design: This is a case-control study. One hundred four histologically confirmed male OSF subjects were included, which consisted of 65 OSF subjects without oral cancer (control group) and 39 OSF subjects with oral cancer (case group). Results: The cigarette consumption in the case group was significantly higher than the control group. In drinking habits, the mean consumption of alcohol in the case group was significantly higher than the control group. Logistic regression analysis was used to identify these risk factors. Age and alcohol consumption showed a significant effect, and the odds ratios were 1.07 in age and 1.5 in alcohol consumption. Conclusion: Alcohol drinking could be a risk factor associated with an increased risk of malignant transformation and coexistence with oral cancer in OSF patients, but cigarette and areca quid were not risk factors in our study. For oral cancer prevention from OSF, more attention should be paid to the importance of public health strategies targeted toward preventing and reducing alcohol consumption. Authors: Pei-Shan Ho, Yi-Hsin Yang, Tien-Yu Shieh, I-Yueh Huang, Yun-Kwan Chen, Ko-Ni Lin, and Chung-Ho Chen Authors' affiliation: Faculty of [...]

2009-04-15T12:02:41-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Age-related changes in salivary antioxidant profile: possible implications for oral cancer

4/30/2007 Haifa, Israel O Hershkovich et al. J. Gerontol. A Biol. Sci. Med. Sci., April 1, 2007; 62(4): 361-6 Oral cancer's much higher prevalence among older people may be due to an age-related reduction in protective salivary antioxidant mechanisms and/or an age-related increase in the magnitude of oral carcinogen attack, such as reactive oxygen species (ROS) and reactive nitrogen species (RNS), causing DNA aberrations. This study found a significantly reduced total value of salivary antioxidant capacity in elderly persons (as measured by overall antioxidant capacity [ImAnOx] assay), (46% of healthy individuals, p =.004), increased oxidative stress (86% increase in carbonyl concentrations-indicators of enhanced ROS attack, p =.001), and increased salivary concentrations and total values of RNS (7-fold and 3-fold higher respectively, p =.001), all contributing to increased DNA oxidation of oral epithelial cells. Salivary oxidative stress-related changes in the intimately related saliva and oral epithelium compounded with higher viscosity of saliva may explain the higher prevalence of oral cancer in the elderly population. Administration of local therapeutic agents (i.e., antioxidants) to the oral cavity should be considered. Authors: O Hershkovich, I Shafat, and RM Nagler Authors' affiliation: DMD, Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery Department, Rambam Medical Center, Haifa, Israel

2009-04-15T12:01:50-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

So, why do baseball players chew?

4/29/2007 St. Louis, MO Gerry Fraley Cardinals outfielder Chris Duncan and Texas Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler stood on opposite sides of the baseball team at Canyon de Oro High School in Tucson, Ariz. Duncan used smokeless tobacco. Kinsler gave it up after an ill-fated, stomach-turning experience. Kinsler cannot recall seeing Duncan without the omnipresent dip in his mouth. Kinsler understands why Duncan is part of a lineage that dates back to spitballs and Babe Ruth. "I guess dipping is tradition,'' Kinsler said. "Some guys need it to perform. Some guys obviously hide it better than other guys.'' Duncan declined to discuss his choice. Duncan might be the Cardinals' most conspicuous consumer of tobacco, but he is hardly alone on this team. Or in his sport. The dippers and chewers and even a few holdout smokers are out there. Their presence illustrates how deeply tobacco is ingrained in the culture of baseball. Estimates say about one in three major-league players use tobacco products, all legal, during the season. In the general population, about one in 10 males are users. There are users in other sports. Former Dallas quarterback Troy Aikman was an avid dipper until late in his career, when a family cancer scare changed his thinking. The difference is that baseball players are visible in their use. There are no known instances of an NBA or NHL player partaking in tobacco during competition. Sherrill Headrick, a center and linebacker in the AFL from 1960-68, is believed to be [...]

2009-04-15T12:01:28-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Seek medical help for sores, lesions in the mouth

4/29/2007 West Palm Beach, FL staff Peter Billias says he is dying of oral cancer, the kind that eats away the insides of your mouth, and the kind that may have been preventable. Or at least treatable, giving him a chance at survival, if it had been diagnosed earlier. At 50, he recognizes the heavy smoking and drinking he has done all his life are undoubtedly responsible. So, even though his prognosis isn't good, the Lake Worth man gave up the cigarettes and booze and has been clean and sober, he says, for five of the eight months since his diagnosis. He doesn't complain or rail about his fate. He just wants to get the word out about making sure that lumps and bumps that aren't right in your mouth get the proper attention. That may prevent others from facing his fate. "If you see anything in your mouth, and it doesn't go away, something is wrong. See an ear, nose and throat doctor. Insist on getting it biopsied," he says. "Or just make sure you request an oral cancer check when you see your dentist. "It's a horrifying disease. (Treatment can mean) they cut part of your tongue out. And it's hitting more and more people that don't drink or smoke." You can find all the information you need about this condition at The site says: "At least 34,000 Americans will be diagnosed with oral or pharyngeal (throat) cancer this year. It will cause over 8,000 deaths, [...]

2009-04-15T12:00:49-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Nicotine Replacement Offered To New York City Smokers

4/29/2007 New York, NY staff The Health Department unveiled a two-pronged effort to help smokers quit smoking. From now through May 15, the Health Department will offer nicotine replacement at no cost to smokers who request it through 311. This year's offer includes nicotine gum as well as patches. The Health Department is also launching a multimedia advertising campaign featuring Ronaldo Martinez, a former smoker who lost his voice to throat cancer at age 39. "Nine out 10 smokers want to quit, but quitting can be tough," said Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas R. Frieden. "Most New Yorkers who ever smoked have already quit. For those who are still smoking, a nicotine patch or gum can double your chances of quitting for good. New Yorkers who want help quitting should call 311 today." Smoking remains the leading preventable cause of death in New York City. Cigarettes kill 9,000 New Yorkers a year—more than 25 every day—and more than 1 million people still smoke. In the new advertising campaign launched today—which includes an interactive internet component—Mr. Martinez recounts how much he has suffered from smoking. He developed throat cancer at 39, and now breathes through a hole in the front of his neck and can only speak through a mechanical device. The campaign features Mr. Martinez speaking in amplified vibrations from his throat to produce monotone speech. The tagline: Nothing Will Ever Be the Same. The ads will run on television and radio, as well as in subways, check cashing outlets [...]

2009-04-15T12:00:27-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Intensity-modulated Radiotherapy Improves QOL Measurements in Head and Neck Cancer

4/28/2007 web-based article staff Researchers from France have reported that intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) was associated with improved quality-of-life (QOL) measurements compared to conventional radiotherapy (RT) for head and neck cancer. The details of this study appeared as an early online publication in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology* Biology* Physics on April 1, 2007.[1] A recent study by researchers from MD Anderson has shown that head and neck RT causes oral mucositis in 100% of patients.[2] They reported that oral mucositis was more common in patients who received chemotherapy and those who received fractionated schedules. Oral mucositis was associated with severe pain in over half the patients and weight loss of over 5 pounds in 60%. They estimated that oral mucositis added $1700–$6000 to the medical costs, depending on severity. There are few treatments for oral mucositis due to RT. Amifostine (ethyol) is approved by the FDA for prevention of xerostomia in patients receiving RT for head and neck cancer but has little, if any, impact on oral mucositis. Kepivance® (palifermin, keratinocyte growth factor) decreases mucositis associated with total body irradiation but has not been evaluated in head and neck cancer. However, an animal model has shown that Kepivance has a protective role in mice receiving chemoradiotherapy.[3] Newer methods of radiotherapy delivery should decrease side effects. Intensity modulated radiation therapy (IMRT) is a relatively new way of delivering radiation that theoretically delivers more radiation to cancers while delivering less radiation to normal tissues than conventional three-dimensional conformal radiation (3D-CRT). [...]

2009-04-15T12:00:05-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Ethyol® Can Be Administered Subcutaneously to Prevent Radiation Induced Xerostomia

4/28/2007 web-based article staff A phase II multicenter trial has demonstrated that Ethyol (amifostine) can be administered subcutaneously for the prevention of radiation induced xerostomia in patients receiving radiation therapy for head and neck cancer. The details of this study appeared in the February 2007 issue of the International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics. Radiation therapy is commonly used to treat patients with head and neck cancers, and xerostomia is a frequent side effect. The intravenous administration of Ethyol has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for prevention of radiation induced xerostomia. The necessity of administering Ethyol intravenously has severely limited its use. Thus, researchers have explored the subcutaneous route of administration. These researchers treated 54 patients with subcutaneous Ethyol followed by radiation therapy. The incidence of grade 2 or greater early Xerostomia was 56% and the incidence of late xerostomia was 45%. These incidences of early and late xerostomia are similar to that observed with the use of Ethyol intravenously in a previous randomized trial and lower than the control group of that trial. Nausea and vomiting were the most frequent side effects. Local control and survival rates were not inferior to those expected. These authors concluded that subcutaneous Ethyol could substitute for intravenous administration for the prevention of xerostomia. Comments: These are important observations that should increase the use of Ethyol in preventing xerostomia in patients with head and neck cancer. It is anticipated that the FDA will approve this route of administration. [...]

2009-04-15T11:59:35-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Ethyol® Allows Greater Tolerability of Chemotherapy in Head and Neck Cancer

4/28/2007 web-based article staff Researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital have reported that the dose of Taxol® (paclitaxel) given with hyperfractionated radiotherapy can be dose escalated in patients receiving Ethyol (amifostine). The details of this dose escalation trial were reported in the October 1, 2005, issue of Cancer. Combined radiation therapy and chemotherapy are standard treatments for patients with advanced head and neck cancers, but most patients have recurrent disease after treatment. Ethyol is a radiation protector and the only drug of this class that has been approved by the FDA for this use in patients receiving radiation therapy for cancers of the head and neck. Clinical trials have demonstrated that Ethyol can reduce both acute and late radiation-induced side effects. In the pivotal trial involving patients with head and neck cancer, Ethyol reduced the incidence of xerostomia but had no effect on the incidence or severity of oral mucositis. Ethyol has also been shown to reduce the incidence of grade 2-3 bladder and GI toxicities in patients receiving pelvic radiation therapy and more recently has been associated with decreased toxicities in patients receiving high-dose melphalan. The current study was a multi-institution phase I clinical trial that included 36 patients with advanced head and neck cancer. Patients were treated with radiation therapy plus weekly Taxol. The number of doses of Taxol was escalated from a minimum of three to a maximum of six. Twenty-eight of these patients received Ethyol; eight received no Ethyol. Patients not receiving Ethyol tolerated four doses [...]

2009-04-15T11:59:12-07:00April, 2007|Archive|

Mouth rinse spots early head and neck cancer

4/24/2007 New York, NY Megan Rauscher Scientific ( Detecting head and neck cancer early, when the odds of successful treatment are best, may be as simple as gargling with saline and spitting in a cup, according to a study conducted by a Miami, Florida-based research team. Oral rinsing flushes out a protein called CD44 -- a known biomarker for cancers of the head and neck. It also detects altered DNA related to these tumors. And the combination of these two biomarkers reliably detects head and neck tumors, the research shows. Dr. Elizabeth J. Franzmann of the University of Miami's Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center reported her team's work at the annual American Association for Cancer Research meeting in Los Angeles. "Cancer of the head and neck is a very debilitating and deadly disease that is often detected in late stages when cure rates are only about 30 percent," Franzmann told Reuters Health. "If we could catch it earlier, we should be able to cure it at least 80 percent of the time but we really need an early detection test." The CD44 protein is involved in normal cell functions, but in cancer it is over expressed and appears in alternative forms that are also involved in tumor formation. Importantly, the protein and altered form can be found in bodily fluids. "Initially, we found that if a patient swishes and gargles for 5 seconds each with saline and spits in a cup, we can actually measure the CD44 level; and it [...]

2009-04-15T11:58:47-07:00April, 2007|Archive|
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