Frontiers Winter 2017

The Director's Perspective: Offering Research-Based Compassionate Care

Year three begins for the new James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute

It’s hard to believe that two years have passed since we opened our transformational James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute as the adult patient-care component of The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center (OSUCCC – James).

Easier to believe is how much this facility has helped us extend our global impact in research and compassionate care. The OSUCCC – James has become an international destination for cancer treatment; we have now served patients from all 88 Ohio counties, all 50 American states and 36 other countries.

More people from around the world are turning to us for help because of our groundbreaking research, which we translate into innovative cancer care and prevention strategies, some of which are featured in this new Frontiers.

Our cover story examines a statewide project that we launched a few years ago called the Ohio Colorectal Cancer Prevention Initiative, which established a 50-hospital network for screening colorectal cancer (CRC) patients and their at-risk relatives for Lynch syndrome, an inherited genetic condition that predisposes to CRC and other cancers. One outcome of the project is a study published in JAMA Oncology that used multigene sequencing to learn the prevalence of mutations linked to hereditary cancer syndromes in a large group of CRC patients diagnosed under age 50. The prevalence proved to be amazingly high—16 percent—and not always Lynch syndrome.

Another story describes the work of four OSUCCC – James research groups that are studying how cancer cells derive the energy they need for rapid growth and proliferation. Their work is identifying promising prognostic and predictive biomarkers and new therapeutic targets to enhance cancer therapy.

You can also read about new microsurgical techniques to prevent or relieve lymphedema, about the support services needed for the ever-growing population of cancer survivors and about a clinical trial for uveal melanoma. I hope you’ll find this issue interesting and informative.

Cancer Survivorship

Cancer survival rates in the United States have dramatically increased during the past 40 years as a result of improved prevention, detection and treatment.

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Insightful Data

Roughly 2,500 people in the United States are diagnosed annually with uveal melanoma (UM), a rare form of melanoma that arises in the iris, ciliarybody or choroid layer of the eye.

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Immune Turn-Down

An immune mechanism that permits the lungs to tolerate exposure to harmless antigens also helps metastatic cancer cells colonize the organ.

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Triple Treatment

A study by researchers at the OSUCCC – James suggests that an innovative triple combination therapy might be particularly effective for glioblastoma (GBM) and should be evaluated in a clinical trial.

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Return Reduction

A study by OSUCCC – James researchers shows that psychosocial risk factors that affect a person’s ability to cope with chronic stress are associated with significantly higher readmission rates and longer hospital stays among blood cancer patients undergoing hematopoietic stem cell transplantation (HSCT).

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Second Hits

Mutations in two genes that play a role in many solid tumors might help explain why some people develop acute myeloid leukemia (AML), according to a study led by OSUCCC – James researchers.

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Psychosocial Trajectories

The disease course that cancer follows during the five years after diagnosis is well known for every cancer site. But similar five-year trajectories are not known for psychological, behavioral and immune responses to cancer.

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Of Note

A listing of the recent recognitions of OSUCCC – James physicians and researchers.

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Early-Onset Colorectal Cancer

Lynch syndrome is the most common cause of hereditary colorectal cancer (CRC) in the United States, accounting for about 8 percent of CRC patients under age 50 and 3-4 percent of all CRC patients.

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Relieving Lymphedema

An estimated 40 percent or more of patients who undergo lymph node dissection for cancer treatment will develop secondary lymphedema, but two innovative microvascular surgeries are helping patients control or even prevent this permanent and often debilitating condition.

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The Six-Carbon Target

Human beings are fundamentally solar powered. The energy that drives the human body—and nearly all life on Earth—originates in the sun and arrives in the diet.

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Bench to Bedside: From the Laboratory to the Pharmacy

That cMET inhibition with crizotinib will prevent the development of metastases in patients with high-risk primary uveal melanoma (UM, also called ocular melanoma).

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Three New Instruments Boost Metabolomics Analyses

Metabolomics is a relatively new area of analysis that identifies and monitors the metabolites present in biological samples such as cells, tissues or serum.

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Free Online Cancer Course Available

“Introduction to the Science of Cancer” is a free, noncredit, online course being offered through iTunes U by The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) in conjunction with Ohio State’s Office of Distance Education and eLearning.

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Need to Know

A wrap-up of the other news that happened in the last six months.

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