10 years after settlement, tobacco rebounds in US

Source: www.google.com/hostednews/ap Author: Bruce Schreiner and Emery P. Dalesio Lindsay Pasley is an eager young man in what used to be an older man's game — tobacco farming. He recently took 20 tons of his early prepared leaf to Clay's Tobacco Warehouse in Mount Sterling, due east of Lexington in the Appalachian foothills, where he said he earned enough to "have a nice Thanksgiving and Christmas." The auctioneer's singsong chant still rings out at Clay's and a few other tobacco-selling sites stubbornly hanging on with limited sales, but not nearly as often. Clay's is the last tobacco warehouse standing in Mount Sterling, once home to four. Owner Roger Wilson, who has watched as longtime growers have switched crops or quit farming altogether over the years, hopes to sell more than 2 million pounds this season, comparable to last year but down about half from the days before Congress pulled the plug on a Depression-era buyout program. Yet Pasley, 28, wants to quadruple his acreage. He has a contract to sell 10 times as much to R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. as he did at the auction. A decade ago, tobacco seemed destined to wither as cigarette companies shelled out tens of billions to settle lawsuits with states. Smoking bans then swept the country and — worst of all for the small-time grower — Congress cut off the quota system four years ago. As a rebound in production this year shows, however, Big Tobacco and individual growers alike have proven as resilient [...]

2008-11-30T12:04:20-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

Cancer survivor is again living the life of a teenager

Source: heraldnet.com Author: Julie Muhlstein Mark Edmondson doesn't ask "Why me?" The 18-year-old has endured more pain than most people suffer in a long lifetime. "I'm still alive," the Everett High School senior said Monday. "I appreciate a lot of things now most teenagers don't." Two years ago today, when Edmondson was featured in this column, he'd just been diagnosed with an aggressive type of mouth cancer. He'd survived grueling surgery. Still ahead were months of chemotherapy and radiation. At 16, as friends were staring to drive and enjoying high school, his future looked bleak. With every reason for self-pity, he never let himself sink. "Never," said his mother, Stephanie Edmondson. "There's no complaining, no whining, no 'Why me?' He's always been like that. He has kind of an old soul. I'm very proud of him," she said. She is also thankful beyond words. Today, Mark Edmondson is strong and fit. He missed a year of school, but is on track for June graduation. He works out at the YMCA and has two jobs. He looks forward to Thanksgiving with his mother, younger brother John, grandmother Celeste Berdahl and extended family. Just a year ago, Mark had a feeding tube. At 5 feet, 10 inches tall, his mother said, he weighed 104 pounds. He finished radiation treatments at Seattle's Swedish Medical Center in the spring of 2007. Since then, scans and biopsies have shown that he's cancer-free. But last fall he suffered an intestinal infection. "He did not look like [...]

2008-11-30T11:56:52-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

New cases of cancer decline in the United States

Source: nytimes.com Author: Roni Cryn Rabin The incidence of new cancer cases has been falling in recent years in the United States, the first time such an extended decline has been documented, researchers reported Tuesday. Cancer diagnosis rates decreased by an average of 0.8 percent each year from 1999 to 2005, the last year for which data are available, according to an annual report by the National Cancer Institute, the American Cancer Society and other scientific organizations. Death rates from cancer continued to decline as well, a trend that began some 15 years ago, the report also noted. It was published online in The Journal of the National Cancer Institute. “Each year that you see these steady declines it gives you more confidence that we’re moving in the right direction,” said Dr. John E. Niederhuber, director of the National Cancer Institute, who is not an author of the report. “This is not just a blip on the screen.” Death rates from cancer fell an average of 1.8 percent each year from 2002 to 2005, according to the new report. Although last year’s report said death rates dropped an average of 2.1 percent each year from 2002 to 2004, a modest 1 percent decline in 2005 lowered the average percentage for the period. The decline is primarily due to a reduction in death rates from certain common cancers, including prostate cancer and lung cancer in men, breast cancer in women and colorectal cancer in both sexes. The report attributes the reductions [...]

2008-11-26T10:36:32-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

ASCO updates guideline on chemotherapy and radiation protectants

Source: www.medscape.com Author: Nick Mulcahy In its first issuance since 2002, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has released an updated guideline on the use of protectants for chemotherapy and radiation therapy. The update provides new guidance on the use of palifermin, the only new protectant approved by the US Food and Drug Administration since 2002, as well as new or deleted recommendations for amifostine and dexrazoxane. The updated guideline, published online November 17 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, also addresses the concern that protectant agents could compromise tumor response and survival. Palifermin, a recombinant keratinocyte growth factor, was approved for prophylaxis against severe mucositis associated with hematopoietic stem-cell transplantation in hematologic malignancies. It represents "an advance for the field," write the guideline authors, cochaired by Martee L Hensley, MD, from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, in New York City, and Lynn M. Schuchter, MD, from the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia. Because of the growing body of evidence on amifostine use in the prevention of esophagitis, the ASCO panel of experts decided to add a new section on this topic in the chemoradiotherapy setting for non–small-cell lung cancer. Updates on amifostine also include guidance on its use for both chemotherapy and radiation-therapy toxicities. With regard to dexrazoxane, the panel made only 1 change from the previous guidelines: guidance on its use in patients receiving high-dose anthracycline therapy has been deleted because of insufficient data. However, the panel highlighted its previous and ongoing recommendation that this agent not be [...]

2008-11-25T22:27:09-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

What to expect: HPV vaccine Gardasil for men

Source: www.vaccinerx.com Author: written by Vaccind Rx Daily Staff The four-type (6,11,16,18) human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine Gardasil® is also effective in men according to the primary analysis from a pivotal phase III clinical study. In previously uninfected men aged 16 to 26 years*, Gardasil® prevented 90% (95%CI: 69, 98) of external genital lesions caused by HPV types 6, 11, 16 or 18. The data were presented this week at the congress of the European Research Organisation on Genital Infection and Neoplasia (EUROGIN) in Nice, France.1 The study was designed to determine the efficacy of Gardasil® in preventing HPV 6,11,16 or 18- related 'external genital lesions' a composite endpoint that included genital warts, penile / perineal / perianal lesions† (PIN, PIN2/3; potential pre-cursors to cancer) and penile / perineal / perianal cancer. In the study, Gardasil was 90.4% effective in reducing external genital lesions (3 cases in the vaccine group vs 31 cases in the placebo group; 95% CI:69.2, 98.1). All three cases observed in the HPV vaccinated group were of genital warts, resulting in a vaccine efficacy of 89.4% (95% CI [65.5, 97.9]) in preventing genital warts in men. There were no cases of penile / perineal / perianal lesions in the vaccinated group vs. 3 cases in the placebo group. There were no cases of penile / perineal / perianal cancer in either group. At the time of this analysis, the study had a mean duration of about 29 months. No HPV vaccine-related serious adverse events were reported. A [...]

2008-11-25T22:12:42-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

Health officials not convinced snus will help smokers quit

Source: www.theintelligencer.net Author: staff They're discreet, flavorful and come in cute tin boxes with names like ''frost'' and ''spice.'' And the folks who created Joe Camel are hoping Camel Snus will become a hit with tobacco lovers tired of being forced outside for a smoke. But convincing health officials and smokers like Ethan Flint that they're worth a try may take some work. Snus - Swedish for tobacco, rhymes with ''noose'' - is a tiny, tea bag-like pouch of steam-pasteurized, smokeless tobacco to tuck between the cheek and gum. Aromatic to the user and undetectable to anyone else, it promises a hit of nicotine without the messy spitting associated with chewing tobacco. Just swallow the juice. ''I think I'd rather throw up in my mouth,'' says Flint, an 18-year-old West Virginia University student, emerging from a convenience store with a pack of Winstons and a coupon for free Camel Snus. ''I'd rather not swallow anything like that.'' Reynolds America Inc., the nation's No. 2 tobacco company, can also expect resistance from the public health community. Experts wonder whether snus will help wean people off cigarettes and snuff, or just foster a second addiction. While snus has been around, it hasn't been prominent in this country. ''I think we're all holding our breath in terms of what's going to be coming down the pike,'' says Dorothy Hatsukami, director of the Tobacco Use Research Center at the University of Minnesota. ''There's not much known about these products - what's in these products, [...]

2008-11-24T12:13:24-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

Reynolds American to sell dissolvable tobacco

Source: biz.yahoo.com Author: Vinnee Tong Reynolds American gave details to investors Monday about its latest smokeless tobacco products, saying that it would begin selling Camel brand dissolvable tobacco products in mid- to late January in three trial markets. The nation's second-biggest tobacco company said that dissolvable strips, orbs and sticks -- made from finely milled tobacco -- will be sold early next year, starting in Columbus, Ohio; Indianapolis; and Portland, Ore. They come in fresh and mellow flavors. Among their biggest selling points for smokers, who have fewer and fewer places to light up, is that there is no spitting and nothing left to throw away. Cigarette companies are trying to find new ways of selling tobacco as cigarette demand has fallen because of smoking bans, health concerns and social pressure. They are focusing more on cigars and smokeless products such as moist snuff, chewing tobacco and snus. Anti-tobacco groups objected last month when Reynolds first said it would begin selling dissolvable tobacco. "These new products pose serious threats to the nation's health," a statement from the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids said then. "They are likely to appeal to children because they are flavored and packaged like candy, are easy to conceal even in a classroom and carry the Camel brand that is already so popular with underage smokers." Reynolds, which sells Camel, Kool and American Spirit cigarettes, defended the new dissolvable tobacco in part by saying the products come in child-resistant packs. The company's dissolvable tobacco products come in [...]

2008-11-23T18:01:10-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

Cost of smoking still staggering

Source: www.pe.com Author: Lora Hines The number of smokers nationwide dropped last year, but the amount of money they rack up in health care and financial losses is on the rise, according to federal health officials. In 2007, more than 43 million people smoked, compared to an estimated 45 million smokers in 2006, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Despite the decrease, average annual smoking-related costs reached nearly $100 billion between 2001 and 2004, compared to $75 billion in 1998, the agency found. Smoking's total annual economic burden comes close to $195 billion, which includes lost productivity. The CDC released the information as the American Cancer Society today marks its 32nd Great American Smokeout, the organization's annual campaign to encourage people to quit smoking. Tobacco use still is the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States, according to the society. Smoking causes an estimated 438,000 people to die prematurely every year. That includes 38,000 deaths of nonsmokers because of secondhand smoke. Half of all people who keep smoking will die from smoking-related diseases, the organization says. "Quitting smoking is the most important step smokers can take to improve their health and protect the health of nonsmoking family members," said Janet Collins, director of the CDC's National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. State Program Praised Meanwhile, UC San Francisco researchers earlier this year concluded that the California Tobacco Control Program saved the state $86 billion in health-care costs between [...]

2008-11-23T17:56:17-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

Battle of his life

Source: www.hattiesburgamerican.com Author: Patrick Magee Barney Farrar has never been one to back down from any type of fight. The Mississippi native is a determined man whose tenacity makes him a passionate coach and dogged recruiter as a member of the Southern Miss football team's coaching staff. He's also known as a compassionate man who will make a visit on his own to the ailing parents of one of the countless high school coaches he's gotten to know over his lengthy career of recruiting his home state. So when word came down in July that Farrar had been diagnosed with throat cancer, the reaction sent waves around the close community of football coaches. He received many calls from coaching cohorts wishing him well. Once the kind words were behind him, Farrar battened down for the biggest battle of his life, which has yet to reach a full conclusion. "They diagnosed it as a category three, but they moved it up to a category four because of the size of the tumor. That scared me," Farrar said. "They told me to not be too alarmed over that at that point because it was just the size that moved me into the worst category." From there, it was a matter of finding the right course of treatment for the lump in his throat that doctors say had likely been there for a year, when he was living in Iowa, before it was diagnosed by Hattiesburg physicians. Farrar, 48, visited different clinics around [...]

2008-11-23T17:51:28-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|

Eli Lilly buys majority of ImClone in tender offer

Source: money.cnn.com Author: staff Drug developer Eli Lilly & Co. said Friday it completed a tender offer worth about $6 billion for ImClone Systems Inc., marking Lilly's biggest buyout in the biotechnology industry. The company announced the $70-per-share tender offer in October. The bid topped two prior offers from Bristol-Myers Squibb Co., which is ImClone's partner on the blockbuster drug Erbitux. Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly bought about 85.4 million shares of New York-based ImClone, representing about 95 percent of the outstanding stock. The company plans to complete the buyout through a short-form merger on or about Nov. 24. in which all remaining shares of ImClone will be converted into the right to receive $70 per share in cash. With the buyout, Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly adds the blockbuster colon and head and neck cancer drug Erbitux to its list of products. Eli Lilly, which sells a range of treatments from Byetta for diabetes to Cymbalta for depression, has been bulking up its biotechnology capabilities along with several other large pharmaceutical companies. Eli Lilly already gets about a third of its annual revenue from biotechnology drugs, which are developed using living cells instead of chemical compounds. The company has already invested $1 billion into a biotech center in Indianapolis, while building a biotech facility in Ireland.

2008-11-23T09:40:56-07:00November, 2008|Oral Cancer News|
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