Thursday December 13, 2018

A simple Blood Test that can predict how Ovarian Cancer Patients respond to Chemotherapy Treatment

The level of tumour DNA in the blood was found to reflect the amount of cancer seen on scans carried out before chemotherapy

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A syringe of blood for test. Pixabay
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London, December 21, 2016: Scientists have developed a simple blood test that can predict how ovarian cancer patients are likely to respond to chemotherapy treatment.

In a study of 40 patients with high grade serous ovarian cancer, the researchers from the University of Cambridge, monitored tumour DNA that could be detected in a blood sample taken before each chemotherapy treatment.

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By measuring the levels of the mutated cancer gene TP53, researchers found those who responded well to treatments had a rapid fall in the levels of this circulating DNA.

The researchers tested levels of this circulating tumour DNA in patients before and after treatment.

The results showed that it took longer for the disease to progress in patients whose tumour DNA count in the blood fell by more than a half after one cycle of chemotherapy, compared with patients whose DNA count did not drop.

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“There’s a need for a test to find out quickly whether ovarian cancer patients are benefiting from chemotherapy. These are early results, but if bigger trials are successful, this test looking at the tumour DNA circulating in the blood could be a cheap, quick and easy way to get this information,” said James Brenton from the University of Cambridge.

Further, the level of tumour DNA in the blood was found to reflect the amount of cancer seen on scans carried out before chemotherapy.

This test may be particularly useful for patients with high grade serous ovarian cancer because the mutated cancer gene TP53 is found in more than 99 per cent of patients with this form of the disease, the researchers said.

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“This could be a good way to test new types of drugs that target cancer cells specifically and spare patients the side effects from treatments if they are not working,” Brenton noted, in the study published in the journal PLOS Medicine. (IANS)

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Regular Dose of Aspirin Reduces Risk of Ovarian Cancer

For this study, published in the journal JAMA Oncology, the team analysed data on more than 200,000 women among which 1,054 developed ovarian cancer

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Aspirin, Ovarian cancer
Aspirin pills are arranged on a counter in New York, Aug. 23, 2018. New studies find most people won't benefit from taking daily low-dose aspirin to prevent a first heart attack or stroke. (VOA)

Taking a low-dose of aspirin daily may help women lower their risk of developing ovarian cancer by 23 per cent, suggests a new study.

Ovarian cancer is the most fatal gynaecological cancer, largely due to lack of early detection strategies and is believed that the inflammation that occurs during ovulation plays a role in the development of this cancer.

Aspirin is thought to lower cancer risk by reducing inflammation.

The findings, led by researchers from H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Centre and Research Institute in the US, showed that low-dose aspirin use was associated with a lower risk of ovarian cancer while standard-dose aspirin use increased the risk, their findings revealed.

Aspirin
Aspirin may lower risk of ovarian cancer. Pixabay

Conversely, women who took non-aspirin anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen (Advil) or naproxen (Aleve) — at least 10 tablets per week for many years, had an increased risk of developing the disease.

“We’re not quite at the stage where we could make the recommendation that daily aspirin use lowers ovarian cancer risk. We need to do more research. But it is definitely something women should discuss with their physician,” said Shelley Tworoger, Associate Centre Director from the varsity.

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For this study, published in the journal JAMA Oncology, the team analysed data on more than 200,000 women among which 1,054 developed ovarian cancer.

In addition, researchers looked at the participants’ use of aspirin (325 milligrams), low-dose aspirin (100 milligrams or less), non-aspirin NSAIDs and acetaminophen. (IANS)