Evidence-based dentistry – detect oral cancers early through dental exams

Source: www.tonguecancer.com Author: staff A recent posting on the American Dental Association web site describes an interesting study conducted by a panel convened by the ADA Council on Scientific Affairs, a sub-group of the American Dental Association. The panel, in conjunction with the ADA Center for Evidence-Based Dentistry (EBD) staff, reviewed five systematic reviews and four clinical studies to determine if dentists could detect oral cancers early through routine dental examination. The study panel examined four distinct questions in the detection of oral squamous cell carcinomas during routine dental exams: 1. Does routine dental screening reduce the likelihood of potentially malignant lesions on the tongue, cheeks, lips, gums and other parts of the oral cavity? 2. Do specialized treatments help dentists identify potential cancers during routine examinations? 3. Compared to examinations without specialized detection tools, can dentists identify trouble spots or should dentists use these specialized tools for the early detection of squamous cell carcinomas in the mouth? 4. Are there specific groups which benefit more from detailed, dental examinations – groups such as seniors, smokers, men, women and other groups within the larger study group? According to the panel’s report, “…while oral cancer screenings may detect potentially malignant and malignant lesions, clinicians are urged to remain alert to signs the lesions may become cancerous or early stage cancers while performing routine visual and tactile examinations in all patients, particularly those who use tobacco or consume alcohol heavily.” It’s been shown that any kind of tobacco use is a cause [...]

2010-09-30T14:29:24-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

When East meets West, cancer patients win

Source: www.healthzone.ca Author: Nicole Baute An ancient four-herb formula used in China for 1,800 years might one day be available as a prescription pill to treat side effects caused by cancer chemotherapy, thanks to research from Yale University and a growing international consortium focused on the globalization of Chinese medicine. Huang Qin Tang (pronounced Hu-ang Chin Tong) is made with peonies, a purple flower called skullcap, licorice and fruit from a buckthorn tree. The Chinese medicine has long been used for diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and cramps, which happen to be side effects associated with certain chemotherapy drugs. Now research led by Yung-Chi “Tommy” Cheng, the Henry Bronson Professor of Pharmacology at Yale University, suggests a Western version of this ancient medicine may reduce gut damage caused by chemotherapy in colon and rectal cancer patients. Cheng says a capsule preparation of this formula, called PHY906, inhibits three processes that cause inflammation during chemotherapy and enhances the recovery of damage to tissue. “This is an example of West meeting East for treatment of cancer,” Cheng said, on the phone from Taiwan. Cheng, who has equity interest in the Yale-sponsored company that licenses the technology, is focused on getting PHY906 licensed as a prescription drug in the U.S. — not as a supplement or alternative. A study published in Science Traditional Medicine Wednesday explains how PHY906 restored intestinal damage in mice caused by chemotherapy and also helped trigger the replacement of damaged intestinal stem cells with healthy ones. The drug is now in [...]

2010-09-30T14:18:21-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

Dentists don’t need tools to screen for oral cancer

Source: auburnpub.com Author: Dr. Michael Keating A comment from a patient the other day inspired this month’s topic. I had gone down to the room of one of the hygienists on my team to examine a patient at their six-month preventive therapy visit. I sat down and began examining the skin of the face and neck when the patient asked me what exactly I was looking for. It made me think. Maybe our patients don’t know what we are looking for as we dentists examine them. The exam is much more than coming in, picking up a mirror and explorer and checking just the teeth. Each dentist has their own method and technique of performing the exam. Rest assured, this important step is not missed. So what is it I am looking for? This particular patient that prompted me to discuss oral cancer asked me the question as I was looking along their hairline and lifting back their bangs so I could examine the scalp and forehead. If you were to look at the Skin Cancer Foundation website (www.skincancer.org) you would find that basal cell carcinoma is found mainly on the face, scalp, ears, neck, shoulders and back. Let’s see, four out of six of those are right front and center to me when I go to look at a patient at their recall exam. Sure makes sense for me to check! So for this patient I told them I was looking for any signs of skin cancer, and if [...]

2010-09-30T14:04:25-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

SciClone identifies unique genetic markers associated with patient response to SCV-07 treatment in oral mucositis

Source: www.marketwatch.com Author: press release SciClone Pharmaceuticals, Inc. today announced that researchers have identified two unique gene clusters that differentiated subjects who responded to treatment in the Company's phase 2a proof of concept study of SCV-07 for the prevention of severe oral mucositis (OM; WHO grades 3-4) in patients with advanced head and neck cancer. The Company believes that the discovery of these gene clusters may assist in providing the framework for effectively identifying those patients most likely to respond to SCV-07 in future clinical trials based on their individual genomic profile or gene signature. These findings were presented today in a poster presentation at the 4th American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) International Conference on Molecular Diagnostics in Cancer Therapeutic Development. As part of the Company's recently completed phase 2a OM study, researchers collected and analyzed RNA samples from patients prior to and at the completion of the trial's treatment phase. Results from this gene expression analysis demonstrated the strong association of two specific gene clusters with patient response to SCV-07. Consistent with SCV-07's activity as a modulator of the immune system, these clusters included genes associated with G-protein coupled receptors, signal transducers, glycoproteins and membrane proteins. "The identification of these specific genetic markers represents an exciting and potentially powerful development in the clinical advancement of SCV-07 for the treatment of oral mucositis," said Dr. Stephen T. Sonis, speaking in his role as Chief Medical Officer of Biomodels, LLC. Dr. Sonis is also a Clinical Professor of Oral Medicine [...]

2010-09-30T12:56:10-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

Nuances in the changing epidemiology of head and neck cancer

Source: Cancer Network Author: Daniel C. Beachler, MHS Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) represents a heterogeneous group of malignancies caused by the traditional risk factors of tobacco, alcohol, and poor oral hygiene, as well as more recently identified roles of human papillomavirus (HPV) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV).[1-3] We commend Kim and colleagues on their comprehensive review of the epidemiology of HNSCC. There has been a clear change in the epidemiology of HNSCC which has further accentuated differences in etiology, survival, and demographics among HNSCC patients. We will discuss several important nuances of this changing epidemiology, including the role of tobacco, race, sexual behavior, and gender, as well as HNSCC in nonsmokers and nondrinkers. As tobacco use has declined over the past several decades,[4,5] so has the number of cancers caused by tobacco and alcohol.[1,6,7] Continued decline in tobacco use and associated HNSCC is not guaranteed, however; in fact, some recent evidence suggests rates of tobacco use in the US may be stabilizing.[5] In contrast, the incidence of HPV-associated HNSCC has increased over the past several decades,[7] although it is unclear what is driving this change. The increasing incidence of HPV-associated HNSCC could be related to changes in oral sexual practices resulting in more oral HPV infection, or it may be explained by increased persistence and progression due to changes in relevant cofactors. Kim and colleagues noted in their review that HPV-associated HNSCC largely occurs among nonsmokers and nondrinkers. While it is true that HNSCC patients with HPV-associated disease [...]

2010-09-30T12:46:32-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

SIBLING proteins may predict oral cancer

Source: www.sciencedaily.com Author: Medical College of Georgia The presence of certain proteins in premalignant oral lesions may predict oral cancer development, Medical College of Georgia researchers said. SIBLINGs, or Small Integrin-Binding Ligand N-linked Glycoproteins, are a family of five proteins that help mineralize bone but can also spread cancer. SIBLINGs have been found in cancers including breast, lung, colon and prostate. "Several years ago we discovered that three SIBLINGs -- osteopontin, bone sialoprotein and dentin sialophosphoprotein -- were expressed at significantly high levels in oral cancers," said Dr. Kalu Ogbureke, an oral and maxillofacial pathologist in the MCG School of Dentistry. "Following that discovery, we began to research the potential role of SIBLINGs in oral lesions before they become invasive cancers." The study, published online in the journal Cancer, examined 60 archived surgical biopsies of precancerous lesions sent to MCG for diagnosis and the patients' subsequent health information. Eighty-seven percent of the biopsies were positive for at least one SIBLING protein -- which the researchers discovered can be good or bad, depending on the protein. For instance, they found that the protein, dentin sialophosphoprotein, increases oral cancer risk fourfold, while bone sialoprotein significantly decreases the risk. "The proteins could be used as biomarkers to predict [the potential of a lesion to become cancerous]," said Dr. Ogbureke, the study's lead author. "That is very significant, because we would then be in a position to modify treatment for the individual patient's need in the near future." Precancerous oral lesions, which can develop [...]

2010-09-21T12:49:42-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

‘Synthetic lethality’ strategy improves molecularly targeted cancer therapy

Source: www.physorg.com Author: Fox Chase Cancer Center Molecularly targeted therapies can reduce tumors rapidly. However, not all tumors respond to the drugs, and even those that do often develop resistance over time. Looking for a way to combat the problem of resistance, researchers at Fox Chase Cancer Center hypothesized that hitting already weakened cancer cells with a second targeted agent could kill them—but only if it was the right second agent. One well-validated molecular target for anti-cancer drugs is the epidermal growth factor receptor, or EGFR. Using a novel screening approach, investigators in the Fox Chase Developmental Therapeutics Program identified over 60 additional proteins that are necessary for cells to survive in the presence of an EGFR inhibitor. When they simultaneously blocked the EGFR inhibitors and any one of these other proteins, more of the cancer cells died. The researchers say this screening strategy to identify targets for effective combinations of cancer drugs will open the door for future therapies. Already, two clinical trials are under way to test innovative drug combinations suggested by the new tactic. "We found that knocking out one or the other target doesn't have a major effect, but knocking out both increases tumor cell death," says Igor Astsaturov, M.D., Ph.D., an assistant professor and medical oncologist at Fox Chase. Astsaturov led the study, which will be published in the September 21, 2010 issue of Science Signaling. To identify additional targets that would boost the effectiveness of EGFR inhibitors against cancer, Astsaturov and colleagues screened only [...]

2010-09-21T12:40:30-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

Robotic surgery breakthrough helping Valley throat and mouth cancer patients

Source: www.abc15.com Author: Jodie Heisner A breakthrough surgery helping those with mouth and throat cancer is being offered by a surgeon right here in the Valley (Mesa, AZ). “It’s nice when about every few years something comes along that’s really a giant step,” said Dr. Glen Rothman of Banner Desert Medical Center. That giant step is being taken with small robotic arms and 3-D imaging. The procedure is done without the doctor even touching you. “Truly the ability to go through the mouth where my hands and my eyes cannot see, with tiny instrumentation and remove tumors in ways that really just did not exist before this technology,” said Dr. Rothman. The procedure is helping patients with mouth and throat cancers similar to the type Michael Douglas is fighting. “It is my understanding that he has squamous cell cancer of his tongue base and that is one of the areas where the daVinci robot could really be used,” said Dr. Rothman. Douglas has opted for chemotherapy and radiation to treat the disease, but for those that choose the surgery with the daVinci robot there are benefits. Without the robot the surgery involves cutting through the jaw leaving scarring. Typically patients are in the hospital for at least eight days. “We do it though the mouth with no incisions on the outside. Just a couple days in the hospital, none of those tubes, no external scars and a much faster, easier recovery,” said Dr. Rothman. It also helps to eliminate many [...]

2010-09-21T12:34:10-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

GSK European Commission amends licence for Cervarix

By: GlaxoSmithKline Source: PharmPro GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) confirmed today that the European Commission has granted Marketing Authorisation to amend the licence for its cervical cancer vaccine, Cervarix®. The approval from the European Commission is important as it recognises the extent of cervical cancer protection demonstrated by Cervarix®, which was not highlighted by the previous indication. The licence amendment is supported by data from the largest efficacy trial of a cervical cancer vaccine conducted to date, the PATRICIA study, and acknowledges that Cervarix® has shown efficacy beyond HPV 16 and 18, the two virus types contained in the vaccine. The summary of product characteristics (SPC) for Cervarix® will be updated to include the prevention of precancerous lesions and cervical cancer causally related to certain strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV) and will reflect data showing efficacy against the two vaccine types contained in the vaccine (HPV 16 and 18) and the three next most common cancer-causing virus types (HPV 31, 33 and 45).* Together these five HPV types (16, 18, 31, 33 and 45) account for 80 percent of all cervical cancers. * Vaccine efficacy is different for each of the HPV types 16, 18, 31, 33 and 45, and varies in different cohorts and endpoints. GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals (GSK Biologicals), GlaxoSmithKline’s vaccines business, is one of the world’s leading vaccine companies and a leader in innovation. The company is active in vaccine research, development and production with over 30 vaccines approved for marketing and 20 more in development - both in the prophylactic and therapeutic fields [...]

2010-09-17T09:07:55-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|

Medicare expands coverage of tobacco cessation

By Mike Lillis Source: thehill.com The Obama administration on Wednesday expanded Medicare to cover more seniors hoping to kick their tobacco habits. "Most Medicare beneficiaries want to quit their tobacco use," Health and Human Services Department (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said in a statement announcing the move. "Now, [they] can get the help they need." Under previous rules, Medicare covered tobacco-related counseling only for beneficiaries already suffering from a tobacco-related disease. Under the new policy, Medicare will cover as many as two tobacco-cessation counseling tries each year, including as many as four individual sessions per attempt. The move is the latest in a string of White House efforts to shift the nation's healthcare system toward prevention, in lieu of simply treating diseases after they've developed. If successful, the new tobacco policy could pay dividends. Of the 46 million Americans estimated to smoke, about 4.5 million are seniors older than 65, HHS says. And nearly 1 million more smokers are younger than 65, but eligible for Medicare benefits. They aren't cheap. Tobacco-related diseases are estimated to cost Medicare about $800 billion between 1995 and 2015. Donald Berwick, head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, said the expansion lends seniors valuable help "to avoid the painful — and often deadly — consequences of tobacco use." The change affects Medicare Parts A and B — hospital care and physician services — but not Part D, which already covers smoking-cessation drugs for all beneficiaries.

2010-09-17T08:57:45-07:00September, 2010|Oral Cancer News|
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