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Welcome Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer
Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer is dedicated to raising awareness about stomach cancer, advancing funding for research, and providing education and support internationally to patients, families, and caregivers. DDF seeks as its ultimate goal to make the cure for stomach cancer a reality.
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June 28, 2018 - Molecular testing in Metastatic Gastric/GEJ Cancer

DDF's Scientific and Medical Advisory Board Chair, David Ilson, MD, PhD, explains that when it comes to a patient with metastatic disease molecular testing does have an impact on choices of therapy. More specifically HER2 testing is a common in patients with metastatic disease. If a patient is HER2-positive, then trastuzumab is included as part of the chemotherapy for that patient. Moreover, for metastatic patients, physicians also consider microsatellite instability testing, DNA mismatch repair protein testing, or PD-L1 testing given as how the outcome of these tests may influence treatment. When a young patient under the age of 50 is diagnosed with gastric cancer, it is prudent to think about CDH1 or hereditary diffuse gastric cancer. Genetic testing is used for these types of patients and it is commonly found that heritable mutations are not present unless there is a family history of gastric cancer in their families. Genetic testing is more commonly used in younger patients than in older patients, nevertheless, in very rare occasions that heritable mutations are found. 

June 22, 2018 - Dendritic Cell Vaccine Plus Salvage Chemotherapy Active in Gastric Cancer

A recent study found that a dendritic cell (DC) vaccine administered with chemotherapy was safe and effective for gastric cancer treatment. 28 patients with refractory or advanced gastric cancer were treated with a DC vaccine every 2 weeks for a total of 7 doses while also undergoing chemotherapy. The results showed two partial response cases, seven patients maintained stable disease, and 11 patients developed disease progression. During a follow-up after a median of 10.3 months, the median overall survival from the date of first vaccination was 10.5 months. Overall survival was longer among patients who experienced a partial response or stable disease (26.3 months) than patients who did not respond to treatment {6.4 months). Differences among various types of immune cell frequencies were noted between the responding and not responding patients. The therapy was well tolerated by patients with no serious adverse effects, except for hematologic toxicities.

June 21, 2018 – TAS-102 Prolongs Survival in Phase III Gastric Cancer Study

According to a recent study, TAS-102 (trifluridine/tipiracil; Lonsurf) provided a 31% reduction in the risk of death for patients with heavily pretreated metastatic or advanced gastric cancer that received the drug compared to patients who received a placebo. The median overall survival time was 5.7 months for patients who received TAS-102 compared with 3.6 months for patients that received the placebo. 21.2% patients survived a year following treatment compared with 13.0% of patients that received the placebo. Studies on the efficacy and safety of TAS-102 revealed that TAS-102 has a predictable and manageable safety profile.

June 18, 2018 – Adjuvant Chemotherapy Advances Boost Outcomes in GI Malignancies

In gastric cancer, results from a FLOT4 clinical trial suggest that the FLOT (fluorouracil/leucovorin, oxaliplatin, and docetaxel [Taxotere]) regimen should be the primary adjuvant treatment in gastric cancer over epirubicin/cisplatin/fluorouracil (ECF) or epirubicin/cisplatin/oxaliplatin (ECX). The trial showed that overall survival was longer for patients assigned to FLOT compared with ECF/ ECX (50 vs 35 months) and are predicted to be more effective for survival long term. Side effects like infections, diarrhea, and neutropenia took place more frequently with FLOT arm but patients receiving ECF/ECX had higher rates of vomiting and nausea. The 2 groups had nearly the same rates of serious adverse events and toxic deaths.

June 16, 2018 – Endoscopic Surveillance Detects Early Gastric Cancer

A study found that endoscopic surveillance can detect gastric cancer at an early curable stage. 279 patients (previous diagnosed with either atrophic gastritis, intestinal metaplasia, or dysplasia) underwent at least one surveillance endoscopy. 84% of the patients were Caucasian. The first surveillance endoscopy was conducted after a mean interval of 35 months with a mean of 2.9 endoscopies per patient. 26% of patients were found to be infected with Helicobacter pylori. Surveillance also helped the diagnosis of 4% of patients with atrophic gastritis, 87% with intestinal metaplasia, and 9% with dysplasia. Four participants were detected to have high-grade adenoma/dysplasia or invasive neoplasia over a mean follow-up of 57 months. Two of these patients were treated successfully with endoscopic submucosal dissection; the other two patients went through total gastrectomy. However, it is reported that examination of tissues is not enough to discriminate between low-risk and high-risk cancer patients. Serological tests are noninvasive and could help identify risk levels while reducing the dependence on endoscopic resources. Gastric and oral gastric microbes can help diagnose stomach cancer and its precursors less invasively as well. 

June 12, 2018 – Futuristic gene-editing technology may cause cancer

Two studies have suggested that successful gene editing with CRISPR Cas9 (to cure genetic diseases) may be associated with an increased risk of developing cancer. This is because the edit may indicate that the modified cell lacks the cancer-suppressing protein, p53. P53 acts as the body's cellular "first aid" kit and also causes some CRISPR edits to fail. When CRISPR makes a cut in the DNA of a cell (to remove deleterious mutations), p53 can be triggered to repair the broken cell or make it self-destruct. When these incidences do not occur and genes are successfully edited, this suggests that p53 is not functioning properly in those edited cells. Since dysfunctional P53 causes significant stomach cancer risk, there are concerns that transplanting CRISPR edited cells into the body could lead to cancer. Other scientists argue that there's no clear connection between CRISPR editing and potential cancer. For that to be true, CRISPR-edited cells intended for transplantation have to be permanently lacking in p53, which has not been established. Also, these study results are based on cultured cells, which may act differently when transplanted back into the human body.

June 12, 2018 – Risk of Diabetes May Increase After Cancer Diagnosis

Diabetes is the main cause of cancer-unrelated mortality among cancer survivors. Numerous studies have suggested that diabetes increases risk for developing cancer. A recent South Korean study found that having cancer itself also increases risk for developing diabetes. Researchers followed 494,189 patients between ages 20 and 70 without diabetes and cancer for a median of seven years. A follow-up revealed that 15,130 people developed cancer and 26,610 developed diabetes over time. Based on the results, it can be said that at any given time, 1.35X as many stomach cancer patients will develop diabetes compared to people without cancer. In general, cancer patients develop other clinical problems more frequently than non-cancer patients. Thus, routine diabetes screening should be conducted among stomach cancer patients.

June 7, 2018 - Helicobacter pylori and Prevention of Gastric Cancer

This article consists of two letters to the editor regarding a clinical trial in which the relationship between Helicobacter Pylori eradication and rate of new tumor occurrences unrelated to gastric cancer (metachronous gastric cancer) and grade of corpus atrophy was examined. In a potential trial conducted in South Korea, early gastric cancer patients who received treatment to eradicate H. pylori showed a lower rate of metachronous gastric cancer than patients in the placebo group; the patients in the treatment group also showed more improvement from baseline in the grade of corpus atrophy. Corpus atrophy was found to be more common among patients with persistent H. pylori infection than patients who had received H. pylori treatment. With regards to the recurrence of gastric cancer after eradication of H. pylori and the relationship between atrophic gastritis and metachronous gastric cancer, the authors responded that their results are not conclusive due to small sample size and number of events. The authors established that H. pylori treatment antibiotics may impact patients' risk for other cancers and conditions but overall, H. pylori treatment should be given to early gastric cancer patients to reduce the occurrence of metachronous gastric cancer and the need for surgery.

June 3, 2018 – Increase in lifestyle-related cancers over past decade spotlights need for prevention

A recently published study found that cases of lifestyle-related cancers increased universally, while cases of cancers from infectious causes—including stomach cancers – decreased between 2006 and 2016. The 2016 rankings for the best and worst countries for stomach cancer according to number of new cases showed South Korea as the worst country with 44.5 new cases per 100,000 people and Namibia as the best country with 2.7 new cases per 100,000 people. Globally, there are 17.3 new cases for every 100,000 people. In terms of deaths, Mongolia is the worst country with 44.0 deaths per 100,000 people and Maldives is the best country with 3.2 deaths per 100,000 people. Globally, 12.6 people die in every 100,000 people.

June 3, 2018 – JTX-2011 shows activity for gastric, triple-negative breast cancers

JTX-2011 (Jounce Therapeutics) is an antibody that targets a protein located on the surface of certain T cells. In a study conducted at the University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center, TX-2011 monotherapy or in combination with nivolumab was found to be well-tolerated and generated antitumor responses among gastric cancer patients. One of seven gastric cancer patients that received monotherapy obtained a partial response and two partial responses were observed from patients receiving combination therapy. Phase one consisted of treatment with standard monotherapy and combination therapy while phase two consisted of treatment with increased doses of the JTX-2011 monotherapy and nivolumab every three weeks. In phases one and two of the trial, there were two ongoing cases of stable disease among 19 patients with gastric cancer

June 2, 2018 – FDA stalls yet another Herceptin copycat, issuing response letter to Amgen/Allergan

Biopharmaceutical companies Amgen/Allergan got approval by European regulatory agencies to use the drug ABP 980 as a biosimilar for Herceptin (trastuzumab) and it is now being marketed as Kanjinti. However, ABP 980 was not approved by the FDA and Amgen has released a statement stating that they plan to work closely with the FDA on the drug. With regards to other Herceptin biosimilars, drugs from Mylan and Pfizer were approved in Europe and Mylan was able to secure approval for Ogivri from the FDA as well.

June 1, 2018 – Dr. Verma Discusses Biosimilars for Trastuzumab

The video depicts to Dr. Sunil Verma, MD, Department head of Oncology and professor at the University of Calgary, describing that Herceptin (trastuzumab) will remain primary drug of choice for patients with HER2-positive disease as of now, because of its use in dual-targeted approaches. The FDA approved MYL-1401O (Ogivri; trastuzumab-dkst), a biosimilar for trastuzumab, in December 2017. There are now questions regarding whether the drug (and other biosimilars) can at some point replace the more expensive trastuzumab. Dr. Verma explains that much more testing is required for replacement drugs to be incorporated into treatments with dual-targeted approaches.

June 1, 2018 – Is endoscopic surveillance necessary for patients who undergo total gastrectomy for gastric cancer?

This study investigated whether it is actually useful for patients to undergo follow-up endoscopy after total gastrectomy to detect recurrent gastric cancer. The study tested detection by follow-up endoscopy and contrast abdominal computed tomography (CT) scan. No tumor recurrence was found among 70 early gastric cancer (EGC) patients. Among the advanced gastric cancer (AGC) patients, 59 out of 197 people (29.8% of patients) had confirmed tumor recurrence during follow-up periods. Most commonly, distant metastasis of cancer had occurred, seconded by peritoneal metastasis. Three out of four cases of anastomosis site recurrence were found by both contrast abdominal CT scan and endoscopy; the contrast abdominal CT scan missed the other case. With regards to the duodenal stump and jejunal loop recurrences (occurred in 2 cases), they were detected by contrast abdominal CT scan only. Thus, it may not be very beneficial for EGC patients to have annual follow-up endoscopy for gastric cancer after TG; contrast abdominal CT scan may be sufficient by itself. However, endoscopy would be useful for AGC patients

May 30, 2018 - Disease-causing stomach bug attacks energy generation in host cells

A new study has found that Helicobacter pylori, which causes ulcers, gastritis, and stomach cancer, resists immune system defenses by disabling energy production in the cells of the stomach lining. These cells serve as a barrier to infection and when a pathogen colonizes them, the immune system launches a predictable series of counterattacks to regain back the space. However, H. pylori manipulates the cells by releasing a toxin to disable the mitochondria so the cells can no longer produce energy. When the cell tries to make up for the energy loss by reallocating resources from other parts of the cell, H. Pylori sets off a signal prompting the cell to stop production and begin breaking things down. As a result, the cell can no longer fight infections.

May 29, 2018 - Gastric Cancer Screening in High-Risk Groups Cost-Effective

A new modeling study suggests that gastric-cancer screening could be cost-effective in high-risk racial and ethnic groups in the U.S. When diagnosed at an early stage, patients with gastric adenocarcinoma (GA) have a five-year survival rate of 95% to 99%. But, if detected later, the survival rate drops to less than 30%.
Thus, it is recommended for people to get screened early on. However, since the prevalence of noncardia intestinal-type gastric adenocarcinoma (NCGA) in the US is low, it is not recommended for everyone.
Results of the study showed that screening with upper endoscopy (EGD) and additional surveillance only if the test detected intestinal metaplasia (IM) or more severe pathology was cost effective for Asians Hispanics, and non-Hispanic blacks. For non-Hispanic whites, it was not cost effective.

May 23, 2018 - How gut microbes are joining the fight against cancer

Research has shown that certain gut bacteria appear to boost people's response to cancer treatment. Some microbes can be adversary and activate inflammatory responses that disrupt the body's protection mechanisms or make cells resistant to drugs, promoting cancer survival. Other gut bacteria, however, can help defend against tumors. Studies have shown that some cancer treatments depend on the gut microbiome activating our immune system. Thus, researchers are trying to manipulate the composition of beneficial microbes in the intestines of cancer patients that don't respond to immunotherapies to see if it can help treatment. University of Pittsburgh immunologists are partnering with the pharmaceutical company Merck to conduct clinical trials in which fecal bacteria will be collected from patients who respond to treatment and transferred into the intestines of non-responding patients. Scientists from the MD Anderson Cancer Center are also partnering with the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy and Seres Therapeutics to conduct clinical trials for fecal microbiome transplant. It's still unclear exactly how microbes might interact with immunotherapy drugs. With regards to side effects, fecal microbiome transplants have proved safe and effective in many people without cancer but unexpected effects can always occur. 

May 22, 2018 - Noninvasive Exhaled Breath Test May Be Effective In Diagnosing Esophagogastric Cancers

A noninvasive exhaled breath test was found to potentially be able to accurately diagnose patients with early esophagogastric cancer (OGC). A study was conducted in which researchers collected breath samples to analyze for volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Eligible patients were potentially undergoing endoscopy or surgery or had upper gastrointestinal symptoms or nonmetastatic esophagogastric adenocarcinoma without ever having received neoadjuvant therapy.
In terms of diagnostic accuracy, the test was found to have a sensitivity and specificity of 80% and 81%, respectively. Researchers are trying to implement this tool to detect OCG in the primary care setting.

May 14, 2018- Medical Marijuana: Efficacy, Toxicity, and Legality

Medical marijuana can exist in a variety of formulations such as dried flowers, resins, extracts and oils. It's legalization and use for medical purposes is still a developing issue and the perspectives of many health care providers is also following the same path. Medical marijuana can be used to ease chronic pain, chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV), sleeping disorders and certain anticancer agents. Overall, the evolution of medical marijuana is a conflict-ridden issue, but its efficacy has demonstrated as a possible method of treatment for a variety of conditions.

May 05, 2018 - Severance researchers find targeted anticancer drug candidate for refractory gastric cancer

Researchers at Yonsei University's Severance Hospital in South Korea have recently discovered a cancer treatment candidate and a potential diagnostic tool for a type of refractory stomach cancer (cancer that does not respond to treatment) known as epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT)-subtype gastric cancer.
EMT-subtype gastric cancer occurs when cancer cells develop into tumor cells that can differentiate into a wide variety of cell types, making them resistant to cancer treatment therapies and contributing to their metastasis.
The researchers discovered that FK866, which inhibits the function of enzymes that aid our cells' energy generating systems can selectively destroy cells of EMT subtypes of gastric cancer. It was confirmed to obstruct tumor growth in PDX animal models.
Researchers additionally found that there is a high correlation between the disappearance of E-cadherin protein and NAPRT protein deficiency. Thus, patients diagnosed with low NAPRT intensity will be eligible for the therapy.

May 1, 2018- An Amino acid mixture as a new approach to reducing cancer therapy-induced gastrointestinal toxicity? A Pragmatic Study

Gastrointestinal toxicity is common during cancer therapy, and most treatment options are not helpful for the majority of patients. A recent study using a mixture of amino acids show decreases in mucositis and gastrointestinal toxicity following irradiation. This study was conducted in order to evaluate how the amino acid-based beverage benefited cancer patients receiving chemotherapy and/or radiation therapy. The use of the beverage was shown to reduce gastrointestinal toxicity in patients undergoing cancer treatment. There will be additional clinical studies to further effects of how this medical food to evaluate the benefits. 

January 19, 2018 - HIPEC Increased Survival in Gastric Cancer with Peritoneal Metastasis

The goal of this study was to test the effect of HIPEC (Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy) on survival and postoperative outcomes after complete cytroreductive surgery compared with resection alone. At 3 years, HIPEC significantly improved overall survival with almost 26% of patients alive at 3 years compared with 13% of patients in the surgery alone group. The median overall survival was 18.8 months for patients treated with HIPEC compared to 12.1 months for surgery alone. Survival results at 5 years were consistent. About 20% of patients were still alive at 5 years, and 15% of patients were considered cured by HIPEC. In conclusion, cytoreductive surgery plus HIPEC improved overall survival compared with resection alone for patients with gastric cancer with peritoneal carcinomatosis.

January 19, 2018 - Single Blood Test Screens for Eight Cancer Types

John Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center researchers developed a single blood test that can detect for eight common cancer types through assessment of the circulating proteins and mutations in cell-free DNA. The test, called CancerSEEK, is a unique noninvasive, multianalyte test that simultaneously evaluates levels of eight cancer proteins and the presence of cancer gene mutations from circulating DNA in the blood. The test was evaluated on 1,005 patients with nonmetastatic, stages I to III cancers of the ovary, liver, stomach, pancreas, esophagus, colorectum, lung or breast. For the five cancers that have no screening tests—ovarian, liver, stomach, pancreatic and esophageal cancers— the median overall sensitivity, or the ability to find cancer sensitivity ranged from 69 percent to 98 percent. The test had greater than 99 percent specificity for cancer.

November 28, 2017 - Poor Oral Health Linked to Precancerous Stomach Lesions

Based on new research, those with higher numbers of oral pathogens associated with periodontal disease may be at risk for precancerous gastric lesions. Patients with precancerous gastric lesions were more likely to show increased periodontal pathogen colonization and lower bacterial diversity, leading investigators to conclude that controlling periodontal disease could be important for preventing gastric cancer. Based on a hypothesis that a group of pathogens may cause periodontal disease and chronic systemic inflammation which contributes to the development of gastric cancer. The best course of action to take would be to emphasize the treatment and control of periodontal disease and pathogen infections.

November 23, 2017 – Long-Term Antacid Use Linked to Increased Stomach Cancer Risk

Scientists have found a higher incidence of gastric cancer in patients treated for H. pylori, a bacterium found in the stomach, if they took proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) over extended periods of time. The prolonged use of these antacids may worsen gastric atrophy and promote bacterial overgrowth. The results of the study conducted at the University of Hong Kong showed that the long-term use of PPIs doubled the risk of gastric cancer – even after eradication of H. pylori, whereas the use of a H2-receptor antagonist - a less potent acid suppressant drug - did not have any stomach cancer risk. Since this research is an observational study, no firm conclusions can be drawn considering PPIs are generally considered safe. It is important to use PPIs at their minimum effective dose, frequency and duration in order to prevent any complications.Scientists have found a higher incidence of gastric cancer in patients treated for H. pylori, a bacterium found in the stomach, if they took proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) over extended periods of time. The prolonged use of these antacids may worsen gastric atrophy and promote bacterial overgrowth. The results of the study conducted at the University of Hong Kong showed that the long-term use of PPIs doubled the risk of gastric cancer – even after eradication of H. pylori, whereas the use of a H2-receptor antagonist - a less potent acid suppressant drug - did not have any stomach cancer risk. Since this research is an observational study, no firm conclusions can be drawn considering PPIs are generally considered safe. It is important to use PPIs at their minimum effective dose, frequency and duration in order to prevent any complications.

November 20, 2017 - Upregulation of ZBTB7A Exhibits a Tumor Suppressive Role in Gastric Cancer Cells

Gastric cancer has been identified as a very deadly type of cancer, as it is currently the third leading cause of global cancer associated mortality. The reason behind the development of this cancer is unknown, however a great amount of research is currently being conducted all around the world to identify its cause. Mining The Cancer Genome Atlas gastric adenocarcinoma dataset identified a frequent loss of the zinc finger and BTB domain containing 7A (ZBTB7A) gene locus and a relationship between low ZBTB7A expression and low chances of patient survival. In the study conducted throughout this paper, the overexpression of ZBTB74 in gastric cancer cells induced cell cycle arrest at the S phase, which is where DNA is replicated in the cell cycle. The results from this study suggest that ZBTB7A in gastric cells function as a tumor suppressor gene slowing down cell division and telling cells when to perish. Understanding the role of ZBTB7A in gastric cancer may provide important clinical insight for treatment. 

November 20, 2017 – 16,840 Cancer Cases Detected in State

Malignant cancer case occurrences in India have risen from 11,815 cases in 2014 to 16,840 in 2017 registered till August. As stated by Dr. Nadeem Shoket, most cancer cases in Jammu are related to the head and neck, whereas in Kashmir the most common type of cancer is stomach cancer. A reason why this number has increased, as stated by Dr. Nadeem, may be related to the state's lack of medical technology which allows doctors to detect these cancers in their early stage. Another reason behind this rise, he said, may be linked to tobacco consumption, inactive lifestyle, poor diet and overall unhealthy lifestyles that these patients most commonly adopt.

November 20, 2017 – Factors that Increase and Decrease Risk of Cancer

Cancer has been one of the biggest killers of the twenty-first century. Many reasons such as excessive use of chemicals in our day to day life, pollution, stress, hectic lifestyle, poor diet and much more has contributed to the increase in cancer cases lately. Cancers of colon, rectum, stomach and more affect both men and women equally, whereas some cancers such as prostate cancer affect men and breast cancer affect women more. Although some factors are linked to specific cancers more than others, such as tobacco and oral cancer, other factors are often times linked to the development of cancer in general. These factors may include: genetics, hereditary factors, aging, hormones, exposure to some chemicals, UV rays, viruses, poor diet and overall health. A healthy lifestyle which includes exercise and a balanced diet and little to no exposure to carcinogens, is a good a possible method to reduce the risk of cancer. 

November 15, 2017 - Genetic Diversity of Tumor Tissues Can Be a Barrier to Precision Medicine in Gastric and Esophageal Cancers

Currently, the use of genome-guided therapy to treat cancers such as gastric cancer, is not very successful. Scientists believe that the use of precision medicine could be improved through a better understanding of the genetic variation of different types of cancer cells found in a cancer patient. In a study that focused on understanding this variability, researchers concluded that the reason why some patient's cancer develop resistance to targeted therapy is related to the cancer's genetic instability which allows them to evolve and diversify and have unique features even within the same anatomical site. This discovery suggests that physicians can use circulating tumor DNA in the blood stream to identify the altered genes in metastases that could be targeted through gene therapy. This concept still needs to be further supported by additional research that could guide genome-guided therapy towards a more successful and accurate method to treat specific cancer genes.

November 07, 2017 - How Helicobacter pylori Causes Gastric Cancer

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is a bacterium present in gastric cancer patients and is thought to be the main cause of this disease's high mortality rate. Although there are no effective therapies for this type of cancer, researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg have been able to identify two mechanisms which explain how this bacterium causes gastric cancer. Results from their research suggests that H. pylori produces an enzyme called HtrA, which penetrates the epithelial cells that protect the stomach against the effects of gastric acid. As a result of this, the bacterium is able to penetrate deeper through the tissue layers of the stomach, leading to the development of gastric cancer. Following this phase, H. pylori activates needle-like extensions, much like syringes, injecting a bacterial toxin known as CagA protein. This protein reprograms host cells and turns them into potentially cancerous cells. This mechanism also inhibits the immune system's recognition of this bacterium. Researchers are hopeful that this discovery will aid in the development of antibacterial therapeutic approaches targeting HtrA and CagA. 

November 07, 2017 - New Tech Can ‘Smell' Disease On Your Breath

Scientists have created an experimental technology which could detect the presence of diseases such as cancer and Parkinson's disease through a non-invasive method. Na-Nose, uses nano-rays to identify chemical composition in your breath and provide you with a diagnosis. This new non-invasive technology is said to be highly accurate with an 86% accuracy rate of diagnosing Crohn's, cancer, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease among others, and a much higher rate of diagnosing gastric cancers than currently available technology. In spite of its tremendous potential, Na-Nose technology is not currently available to the public because some questions still remain regarding how to store the samples taken from the patients, as well as what environmental factors may influence the results obtained from the chemical composition of your breath. Once more information is gathered and the technology is improved, scientists hope this new diagnostic method could be available for mass production and could have applications which could turn a smartphone into a "sniffphone" allowing patients to monitor their health from home. 

November 06, 2017 - Adolescent Obesity Linked with Noncardia Gastric Cancer Risk

Following a study regarding non-cardia gastric cancer, researchers determined that obese adolescent body mass index is associated with an increased risk for non-cardia gastric cancer in both men and women. The results obtained through this study are said to be linked to insulin and insulin-like growth factor signaling pathways, adipokines, inflammation and immune responses, and gastrointestinal microbiota which are thought to be major player mechanisms associated with the development of this type of cancer. Furthermore, this study was able to identify a relationship between social economic status and an increased risk for non-cardia gastric cancer. Those belonging to lower social economic statuses and that have lower educational levels were found to be at increased risk of developing non-cardia gastric cancer. 

November 06, 2017 - Smoking and Effects on the Stomach

Smoking is known to have detrimental effects on the body and may lead to different types of cancers of the digestive system such as stomach cancer, bowel cancer, and colon polyps. Moreover, nicotine found in cigarettes is known to weaken the lower esophageal sphincter muscle and lead to gastro esophageal reflux disease (GERD) and heartburn. This muscle is in charge of stopping gastric acid from entering the esophagus; exposure to these acids can greatly damage the tissue. Cancer may arise after gastric acid exposure as esophageal cells are altered. Furthermore, smoking also increases the risk of developing colonic growths on the mucosal lining of the colon or rectum. In patients with a history of smoking, the development of colonic polyps, tend to be multiple and larger and have a higher possibility of recurrence. Smoking also increases the risk of developing Crohn's disease which is an inflammatory intestinal condition creating pain and irritation in the gastrointestinal tract. When comparing men and women, the effects associated with smoking are seen to be more prevalent in women than in men. Smoking also increases the risks of developing peptic ulcers, gallstones, and pancreatitis. Overall the diseases caused by smoking lead to the deaths of about 400,000 Americans annually. 

November 04, 2017 - News Digest – Gut Bacteria, Aspirin, Bowel Cancer in Women and… ‘Wonky Willy' Cancer Risk?

New research on cancer has given light to a series of interesting facts regarding treatment and the risk of developing stomach cancer. According to two studies covered by the news media in England, the success of Immunotherapy drugs can be affected by the type of, as well as the overall density of bacteria found in the bowels of cancer patients. In another study, findings suggest that taking aspirin on a regular basis can reduce the risk of some digestive system cancers by up to 47%. Nevertheless, because this intake of aspirin can cause harm, it is important to consult with your doctor prior to deciding to follow this advice. Researchers in Japan have developed a computer program capable of telling the difference between harmless bowel growth and cancer. The computer is said to be able to identify 94 out of 100 bowel cancers in endoscopy images. It has also been discovered that drugs intended to alleviate acid reflux may increase the risk of stomach cancer - the longer this medicine is taken the higher the risk is. In Scotland, a study suggested that those belonging to poorer areas had higher death rates due to cancer than those belonging to wealthier areas. One last study suggested that Peyronie's disease may be linked with higher risks of developing certain cancers such as stomach, skin, and testicular cancer. More research is needed to determine whether there is or there is not an actual link between the two.

October 30, 2017 - Patients on PPIs More Than Twice as Likely to Develop Gastric Cancer, Study Finds

It is important for General Physicans to be cautious when prescribing long term PPIs, proton-pump inhibitors, as recent studies have shown that patients taking them are more than twice as likely to develop gastric cancer. The study also showed that the risk of gastric cancer increased with the duration of therapy, meaning the longer a PPI was taken, the higher their risk was for developing gastric cancer. Be sure to bring up any concerns to a healthcare professional in regard to any risk you feel you may have.

October 27, 2017 - Stage 2 Trial of Pembrolixumab Plus Standard Chemotherapy for Gastric Cancers

For a new phase 2 study, researchers are investigating the efficacy of pembrolizumab immunotherapy plus chemotherapy as a perioperative treatment for patients with gastric cancer or adenocarcinoma of the GE junction. Patients will receive 3 cycles of the investigators choice of chemotherapy regimen along with a cycle of pembrolizumab before and after surgery. The primary outcome is 2-year disease-free survival, secondary measure is pathologic complete response rate and disease-free survival over 34 months in addition to overall survival and response over 5 years. The study is now open and has started recruiting patients as of October 25th, 2017.

October 26, 2017 - Details Uncovered in Development of Immune Cell Implicated in Cancer Autoimmune Disease

Our immune system plays an important role in keeping the body free of foreign micro-organisms, but there are times where the immune system attacks healthy tissue or may be responsible in cancer progression. A recent study conducted by the University of North Carolina Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center demonstrates how an immune cell plays a role in autoimmune diseases and cancer progression. Triggering the development of Th17, an immune cell, causes the cell to send help to tumors or infections. Further studies could lead to new treatments for autoimmune disorders, along with cancer. For gastric cancer, a deficiency in Smad4- a molecular complex that prevents DNA from being read- prevents the development of Th17, the immune cell that aids in preventing disease progression.

September 25, 2017 - FLOT4-AIO Results Could Guide Operable Gastric Cancer Treatment

Perioperative docetaxel, oxaliplatin, and 5-fluorouracil/leucovorin (FLOT) treatment should be the new standard of care for patients with operable adenocarcinoma of the stomach or gastroesophageal junction, say the FLOT4-ALO investigators. When compared to patients who received epirubicin, cisplatin, and infused 5-fluorouracil (ECF), those who received FLOT achieved a greater overall survival. There was a progression free survival (PFS) benefit with FLOT regardless of whether patients underwent surgery, and the overall survival improvement with FLOT occurred independent of tumor markers.

September 22, 2017 - FDA Approves Merck's KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab) for Previously Treated Patients with Recurrent Locally Advanced or Metastatic Gastric or Gastroesophageal Junction Cancer Whose Tumors Express PD-L1

Today, Merck announced that the FDA has approved the anti-PD-1 therapy, Keytruda (pembrolizumab) for the treatment of patients with recurrent locally advanced or metastatic gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma whose tumors express PD-L1. This makes Keytruda the first Pd-1 checkpoint inhibitor approved in the United States for previously treated gastric or GEJ cancer.

September 09, 2017 - New Treatments Needed for Those Disabled by Advanced Gastric Cancer

During a recent study, researchers took the time to understand the issues of patients with gastric cancer due to its high global incidence rate. The study found that it is not only the patient who is affected by gastric cancer but also the role caregivers play during a gastric cancer diagnosis. Most caregivers were the partner or spouse of the patients, and nearly all of them were unable to work or had to cut back their work hours because of their time spent taking care of their loved one. Overall, gastric cancer not only affects productivity for the patient diagnosed but for their caregivers as well, in addition to an increase in health care utilization, and a significant decrease in patients' quality of life. 

September 03, 2017 - Cancer Imaging Method Produces Clearer Signals

Researchers at Sanford Burnham Prebys Medical Discovery Institute report that they have developed an improved cancer imaging technology that greatly reduces background noise, making cancer cells stand out more clearly. This new technology has demonstrated consistency by producing images with greater contrast between the cancer and surrounding tissue, including gastric cancer. Scientists are working on adapting the technology for human use.

August 21, 2017 - 8 Reasons Everyone Should Know Their Blood Type

It is important to know one's blood type since it could tip you off to potential medical conditions. Several studies have shown that different blood groups could correlate anywhere from heart disease risk to infertility. While the studies are not conclusive of the cause and effect of such diseases, it is extremely beneficial for your well-being. Type A blood is known to increase the risk for stomach cancer, and may be more vulnerable to disease risk factors such as cigarette and alcohol use. Type O blood also had an increased risk for stomach ulcers; they may be more prone to H. pylori, a common bacteria found in the stomach that causes stomach sores.

August 17, 2017 - Stomach Stem Cells Pushing into Cancerous Overdrive by H. pylori

Scientists have suspected for some time that stomach cancer is mainly caused by a bacteria called Helicobacter pylori. Bacteria does not transfer DNA into infected cells, so it is still not well understood as to how H. pylori triggers cancer. While certain viruses are known to cause cancer, such as human papilloma virus (HPV), by transferring oncogenes into the host cell DNA - the same cannot be said for how bacteria triggers cancer. Researchers Michael Sigal, Thomas Meyer, and their teams believe that bacteria's role in triggering cancer is through stem cells in the glands that line the inside of the stomach. The stems cells identified were two different types, one cell was pushed into overdrive by exposure to bacteria, while the other is quieted.

August 15, 2017 - Doctors Called Amazing Properties of Spinach

Spinach is known for its high nutrient density, low caloric quantity, high vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. Eating spinach is also known to normalize and regulate the urinary, lymphatic and digestive systems. Spinach is full of flavonoids, which act as natural antioxidants and apigenin, which helps to fight the formation of cancer cells. Studies have shown that eating large amounts of spinach and other green vegetables slows down the aging of brain function. Most importantly, spinach consumption has been linked to anti-inflammatory properties and contains lutein - which enhances human immunity and protects against various types of cancers, particularly gastric cancer.

August 15, 2017 - Short-Term CV Risk in Patients with Newly Diagnosed Cancer

A retrospective study in newly diagnosed cancer patients has identified an increased risk of cardiovascular abnormalities aggravated by cancer stage. The primary outcomes of interest in the given study group were myocardial infarction (MI) and ischemic stroke, both of which fall under arterial thromboembolism. Patients with cancer were more than twice as likely to suffer an MI and about twice as likely to suffer an ischemic stroke. The authors concluded that their analysis found that cancer stage was associated with an increased risk of these events in the patients, but the risk would resolve within a year. The highest risk was observed in patients with lung, gastric and pancreatic cancers - all of which have some of the poorest 5-year survival rates in the U.S.

August 10, 2017 - Novel Agent S-1 Has Similar Efficacy to 5-FU in Certain Gastric Cancers

A new phase III trial's results suggest that the combination of oral fluoropyrimidine-1 and cisplatin offers similar efficacy to 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) and cisplatin in patients with chemotherapy-naive diffuse type adenocarcinoma of the gastroesophageal junction or stomach. The study's author, Jaffer A. Ajani, MD of the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston stressed the importance of histological factors in addition to age, tumor size, stage and location of certain cancers. However, for HER2-negative tumors, a combination of a fluororpyrimidine and platinum-based therapy is standard.

August 4, 2017 - Obesity and Cancer: An Interdisciplinary Approach to Weight Management

Obesity is a chronic disease affecting more than 1 in 3 adults in the U.S. While obesity affects some groups more than others, it increases the risk for cancer. The obesity link to cancer death in the U.S. was associated with the risk for numerous cancers, including esophageal cancer, esophageal adenocarcinoma, and gastric cardia cancer. While the mechanisms underlying the relationship between cancer and obesity are not fully understood, the main mechanisms include: insulin resistance and chronic hyperinsulinemia, increased bioavailability of steroid hormones, and localized inflammation. Among patients diagnosed with cancer, obesity has been linked to poor prognosis including surgical complications, cancer recurrence, and even cancer mortality.

August 4, 2017- Reconstruction Method in Gastric CA Surgery Affects Bone Density

The standard reconstruction method may affect postoperative bone mineral density (BMD) loss in gastric cancer according to a study published in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. In multivariate analysis, researchers found that R-Y reconstruction was an independent risk factor for BMD loss after distal gastrectomy. B-I reconstruction was found to have superiority over R-Y reconstruction for preventing BMD loss in the first three years after distal gastrectomy. The authors of the study also mentioned that B-I reconstruction may be a preferred method of treatment in preventing BMD loss post-gastrectomy in gastric cancer patients.

July 21, 2017 - Palliative Cancer Care Should Focus on Symptoms, Not Diagnoses

In order to properly focus on treatment in palliative care for patients with cancer, symptoms instead of specific cancer diagnoses should be the focal point of treatment methods. Palliative care is an important form of treatment for patients with cancer. While advancements have been made, palliative care is not readily available for many patients and many patients must depend on acute care hospitals as their only option.

July 21, 2017 - How ‘Bad' Gut Bacteria Can Change Their Evil Ways

In a recent study appearing in the journal "Science Immunology", scientists found that in a group of mice, Helicobacter pylori - often associated with ulcers, stomach cancer and intestinal distress - turned "bad" only when placed in a bad gut environment. The bacteria triggered two very different immunological responses, depending on the health of the mice. The study suggests that Helicobacter and similar bacteria labeled as "bad" may be neutral or even beneficial, depending on the health of the individual. It still remains unclear why Helicobacter stimulates certain responses from T cells, but may lead to maintaining a tolerance to bacteria and new drug developments.

July 21, 2017 - COX-2 Inhibitors Can Improve Response to Immunotherapy of Some Cancer Tumors

Tumors that express the protein indoleamine 2, 3-dioxygenase-2 (IDO1) constrictively respond to the COX-2 inhibitor celoxib and have increased filtration of certain T-cell subsets making them more responsive to anti-PD1 treatment. Depending on tumor type, initial analysis showed that IDO1 was continuously expressed by 10% to 50% of human tumors. IDO1 expression and COX-2 activation were associated in various cancer types such as lung cancer, liver, pancreatic, stomach, and sarcoma.

July 6, 2017 - BRD4 Promotes Gastric Cancer Progression Through the Transcriptional and Epigenetic Regulation of c-MYC

A recent study has found that BRD4 increases the growth and stops the programmed cell death of gastric cancer cells. Using both large and small studies, scientists were able to conclude that BRD4 is highly expressed in gastric cancer tissues and cells when compared to nearby non-tumor tissues and normal cells. Suppressing BRD4 inhibits growth and programmed cell death in gastric cancer cells, while forced expression of c-MYC along with BRD4 repression prevents the anti-cancer effects caused by BRD4 repression. This discovery not only led to the mechanism of BRD4 in regulating the growth of gastric cancer cells, but has also provided a potential for new therapeutic strategies.

June 29, 2017 - Caffeine Induces Sustained Apoptosis of Human Gastric Cancer Cells by Activating the Caspase-9/Caspase-3 Signaling Pathway

While caffeine is known as one of the most widely consumed substances in beverages, it also has demonstrated anticancer effects in some cancers. In a recent study, the goal was to examine the anticancer effects of caffeine on gastric cancer cells in vitro, and to determine whether programmed cell-death related pathways were associated. The results showed that caffeine treatment significantly suppressed gastric cancer cell growth and viability while allowing cell death through the activation of caspase pathways. In the future, caffeine may be used as a sustained anticancer agent by activating the caspase pathway, which may be used as a therapeutic aid in gastric cancer.

June 22, 2017- Current Molecular Profiling in Gastric Cancers

A panel of various physicians including a member of Debbie's Dream Medical Advisory Board, Yelena Y. Janjigian, MD of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discussed diagnosing gastric cancer in younger patients as well as new protocols for managing the possibility of a hereditary link. Dr. Janjigian shares that there has been an increase in gastric cancer in young adults, especially males, such as former veteran and young servicemen. With this increased incidence of disease, the Department of Defense has now started funding research. HER2 status was another topic stressed among the panel as well as screening patients who are susceptible for Lynch syndrome and other malignancies.

June 21, 2017- Docetaxel-Based Triplet New Standard in Gastric Cancer

A new standard of treatment of care for resectable gastric or gastroesophageal (GEJ) adenocarcinoma is perioperative chemotherapy with docetaxel-based triplet. The MAGIC trial established perioperative epirubicin, cisplatin, and fluorouracil (ECF) as a standard of treatment for patients with operable esophagogastric cancer, but outcomes remain unsatisfactory. With the new method of treatment, docetaxel-based triplet FLOT, the median overall survival was higher and showed an increased rate of curative and prolonged progression-free survival when compared to ECF/ECX. With FLOT there was no increase in surgical morbidity and mortality, re-surgeries, and hospitalization time. Overall, FLOT improved outcome in patients with resectable gastric and GEJ cancer – making it the new standard of care in perioperative treatment of patients with such cancers.

June 20, 2017- Work Related Stress and Cancer: Recent Study Examines the Connection

Researchers from the University of Quebec and University of Montreal conducted a study on how prolonged exposure to work-related stress can greatly impact an individual's health and may increase their risks of developing certain kinds of cancers. The results showed that employment in at least one stressful job increase the odds of various cancers, including stomach cancer. Most of the common reasons for work related-stress included: high demand, time pressure, responsibilities, anxious temperament, financial insecurity, personal conflicts, difficult working conditions, and traffic.

June 15, 2017- Tumor PD-L2 Expression May Predict Patient Response to Anti-PD-1 Immunotherapy

A clinical response of PD-L2 protein expression in human tumors was associated with pembrolizumab (Keytruda), an anti-PD-1 immunotherapy. While the study was primarily focused in patients with head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, it was also discovered that PD-L2 expression varied among tumor types including gastric cancer. PD-L2 expression showed moderate to high levels of expression. Overall, the study suggested that PD-L2 expression may provide additional information beyond PD-L1 positivity in predicting clinical response to anti-PD-L1 therapies.

June 14, 2017- Early Trial Data Supports Keytruda as Standalone Therapy For Advanced Stomach Cancers

The latest results from a first group of patients in a Phase 2 clinical trial supports Keytruda (pembrolizumab) being used to treat individuals with advanced/recurrent gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma who did not respond to two previous chemotherapies. Keytruda is a humanized monoclonal antibody that blocks the interaction between PD-1—a checkpoint protein found on T-cells, an immune cell. By preventing the protein from attaching with its ligands, the drug activates T-cells, boosting the immune response to cancer cells, but raised the risk that T-cells may attack healthy cells. Charles S. Fuchs, MD, MPH, the trial's lead investigator and a member of Debbie's Dream Foundation Medical Advisory Board, revealed that the study's findings showed "meaningful response rates for Keytruda in heavily pre-treated patients, who have historically faced poor outcomes". Keytruda is a drug developed by Merck and is a potent anti-PD-1 antibody which helps activate the immune system's response to cancer cells. Keytruda has already been approved by the FDA for the treatment of melanoma, lung, and other cancers. The Phase 2 KEYNOTE-059 trial data collected will be used by Merck to support Keytruda for its Biologics License Application, which will eventually allow prescription of Keytruda to treat patients with recurrent or advanced gastric adenocarcinomas.

June 13, 2017 - Dr. Fuchs Discusses Immunotherapy in Gastric Cancer

Charles S. Fuchs, MD, MPH, director, Yale Cancer Center, physician-in-chief, Smillow Cancer Hospital, 2017 Giant of Cancer Care in Gastrointestinal Cancer, and a member of the Debbie's Dream Foundation Medical Advisory Board discusses new strides in immunotherapy for treating gastric cancer. While therapies are common in the treatment of various cancers, Dr. Fuchs emphasizes the need for a greater variety of therapies by developing new drugs with the understanding of how gastric cancer works in the body. Sustained response shows promise for patients who have little to no other treatment options and may help other patients further down the road.

June 13, 2017- Breath Test Shows Promise for Detecting GI, Esophageal Cancers

New research supports a breath test's ability to diagnose gastric and esophageal cancer cases. Assuming the findings are validated, especially for patients with early-stage disease, the test could be useful for screening individuals at risk, including first-degree relatives for individuals with esophageal or gastric cancer, those who smoke and consume alcohol, or individuals with severe gastroesophageal reflux disease. Dr. Markar, a clinical research fellow in the Department of Surgery and Cancer at Imperial College London shares that the implementation of a breath test could be used as a "noninvasive, first-line test, and in the longer term… earlier diagnosis and treatment and survival." Introducing a breath test may also be a financial benefit for patients by reducing negative endoscopies, and false-negative patients from repeating testing.

June 7, 2017- Gastric Linitis Plastica Diagnosis Uses Endoscopic and Radiologica Studies Approach

Linits Plastica (LP) is one of the most serious forms of gastric cancer. It is a subtype of gastric cancer that presents itself in about 20% of gastric adenocarcinoma cases and can be identified as a "signet ring" via biopsy. With LP, most patients have a 5-year survival of less than 10%, making an early diagnosis critical to the patient's outcome. Patients with LP will have more intense symptoms presented with gastric cancer in addition to early satiety and depending on how much stomach involvement there is may lead to limited distensibility. While many of the symptoms of LP are non-specific, LP can be diagnosed non-invasively by upper GI studies such as a CT scan of the abdomen and pelvis. A more invasive procedure of diagnosing LP is by Esophagoduodenoscopy (EGD) which allows for visualization of the gastric mucosa or an Endoscopic Ultrasound (EUS) which can visualize the different layers of the stomach and assess the extent of malignancy. It is important to note that any gastric ulcers should be biopsied since it may allow for an earlier diagnosis of LP.

June 7, 2017 - Research Says H.pylori Needs Much Closer Attention

While gastric ulcers were once thought to be causes by stress, it appears that the bacterium Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) plays a role in gastritis and peptic ulcer disease. Researchers from the Mel and Enid Zuckerman School of Public Health at the University of Arizona conducted a study determining whether or not U.S. physicians consistently adhere to the American College of Gastroenterology guidelines for treating and managing patients infected with H. pylori. Such guidelines include when and how to test for H.pylori as well as when and how to treat a patient when they have been infected.  The study concluded that most physicians follow the guidelines for testing patients and if they are suspected of having the bacterium due to possible risk factors such as peptic ulcers or dyspepsia. What almost 40% of physicians lacked was ensuring the bacterium was fully eradicated following treatment for H. pylori which may lead to drug resistance in the future for some patients.

June 5, 2017 - The Optimal Timing for Surgery After Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy in Advanced Gastric Cancer

Perioperative chemotherapy is the standard method of care for patients with locally resectable gastric cancer. This is based on the results of the British MAGIC and the French FNCLCC/FDD trails, both of which showed a significant overall survival benefit for those who received perioperative chemotherapy compared to those who only had surgery. In order to properly assess the progression of disease, CT imaging or PET scans are recommended.  Sometimes diagnostic laproscopy with peritoneal cytology may also be considered.  Nutritional education and counseling is also very important since there are major lifestyle changes that come after surgery, weight loss being one of the major issues. Increased nutritional treatment of weight loss has been associated with significant improvements in survival and complication rates.

June 4, 2017 - New Monotherapy Data for Merck's KEYTRUDA (pembrolizumab) in Heavily Pre-Treated Patients with Advanced Gastric Cancer to be Presented at 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting

Merck announced findings from the phase 2 KEYNOTE-059 trial investigating KEYTRUDA (pembrolizumab), a monotherapy previously used in treating patients with advanced gastric cancer or gastroesophageal cancer junction adenocarcinoma. The data collected supports the application for approval for treating patients with advanced disease who have already received two or more lines of chemotherapy. Due to the difficulty in treating advanced gastric cancer, there is a greater need to identify new treatment options for treating patients and the findings from the study have shown increased response rates for KEYTRUDA in heavily pre-treated patients who had poor outcome.

June 2, 2017 - ASCO: IBM Presents Watson Updates in a Handful of Studies

IBM's Watson for Oncology allows oncologists to make treatment decisions for individual patients by reading patient data and running through medical literature in a shorter amount of time than individual medical experts could. Based on patient data collected, the system determines whether the standard treatment should be followed, considered or abandoned. The importance of Watson for oncology can be seen in areas where there is a lack in subspecialty expertise such as cancer centers where there is a primary focus in only certain types of cancer and even more in community cancer centers - where most cancers are generally treated. Watson would not only benefit urban areas, but also rural environments where healthcare institutions have fewer resources. Watson's most recent development has aided in decreasing the amount of time needed for patient screening for clinical trial eligibility, a major factor in cancer treatment.

May 30, 2017 - Screening and Treating Helicobacter pylori Infection for Gastric Cancer Prevention on the Population Level

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) is known as the major cause of gastric cancer and the removal of this bacteria may theoretically decrease the incidence of gastric cancer by approximately 89%. Outside of a controlled environment, in a real setting some studies have demonstrated the effect of screening and treating the pathogen in certain populations. Due to poor healthcare infrastructure for proper health screenings for those who may be infected with the bacterium, not all individuals may receive the correct diagnostic testing and antibiotic treatment. The results of this study demonstrate that the use of proper screening may lead to a greater prevention of gastric cancer and how it can eventually become a priority in the healthcare community in areas with limited resources and different gastric cancer risks.

May 23, 2017- FDA approves first cancer treatment for any solid tumor with a specific genetic feature

Today, the FDA approved Merck's Keytruda for microsatellite instability-high (MSI-high) cancers, a tumor type identified by genetic testing. About 4-5% of stomach cancer patients are MSI-high and are now eligible for treatment after at least one prior therapy. This is the first time the FDA has approved a cancer treatment based on a common biomarker rather than the location in the body where the tumor originated.

May 17, 2017 - Peripheral Venous Blood Neutrophil-to-Lymphocyte Ratio Predicts Survival in Patients with Advanced Gastric Cancer Treated with Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy

This study explored the potential prognostic significance of the neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio (NLR) in advanced gastric cancer patients receiving s-1 plus oxaliplatin (SOX) or oxaliplatin and capecitabine (XELOX) regimen. The results of the study concluded that NLR may serve as a cheaper and convenient prognostic indicator for gastric carcinoma patients receiving SOX or XELOX neoadjuvant chemotherapy while low NLR may create more efficient treatment measure for gastric cancer.

May 13, 2017- Tomato Extract Fights Stomach Cancer, Ripe for Further Study

A new study shows that whole tomato extracts from two different Southern Italy cultivars prevent gastric cancer cell growth and malignancies. During experimentation, extracts from the tomatoes San Marzano and Corbarino were found to inhibit the growth and cloning behavior of malignant cells in gastric cancer cell lines. The results of the study require further assessment of how specific nutrients may be used not only in cancer prevention but as a supportive conventional therapy for those already affected by gastric cancer.

May 8, 2017 - The Role of micro-RNA-1274a in the Tumorigenesis of Gastric Cancer: Accelerating Cancer Cell Proliferation and Migration via Directly Targeting FOXO4

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are non-coding RNAs that play an important role in tumor growth. This study examined miR-1274a on gastric cancer cells and found that it was overexpressed in gastric cancer tissues and cells. When miR-1274a was overexpressed it activated P13K/Akt signaling and upregulated various cyclin expressions. Using mice models, scientists were able to prove that miR-1274a did in fact play a role in tumor growth in live mice demonstrating that the discovery of miR-1274a's role in gastric cancer may be a potential targeted therapy for gastric cancer.

April 27, 2017- Palliative Radiotherapy for Gastric Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

This study reviewed the efficacy and toxicity of palliative radiotherapy for symptomatic locally advanced gastric cancer in order to determine the optimal radiotherapy schedule for symptom palliation. Researchers were able to narrow their searches to aid patients in need of relief of bleeding, pain and obstruction. The results showed that more than two-thirds of patients receiving radiotherapy would have a clinical benefit and low biological equivalent dose regiments were adequate enough for symptom palliation. Toxicity rates were acceptable for patients treated with radiotherapy alone but the optimal dose fractionation regimen for symptom palliation remains unclear.

April 27, 2017- Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy Followed by Surgery for Metastatic Gastric Cancer

According to a recent study published in JAMA Oncology, neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by surgery has been found to improve survival among patients with metastatic gastric and gastroesophageal junction cancer. Most patients diagnosed with gastric cancer have poor survival due to the disease being detected at later stages. In this study, researchers attempted to determine whether pre-surgical fluorouracil, leucovorin, oxaliplatin, and docetaxel (FLOT) would improve overall patient survival in the given population. Overall, the study concluded that neoadjuvant FLOT followed by surgery improves outcomes for patients diagnosed with gastric or gastroesophageal junction cancer.

April 11, 2017 - Melbourne Researchers Find Ways to Stop Cancer Mutating in Body

New research shows that a medical breakthrough could allow doctors to stop cancer progression by locking cells into a harmless state before they mutate and spread in the body. Scientists at the Olivia Newton-John Cancer Wellness & Research Centre may be able to suspend the growth of cancer tumors by interrupting the body's wound-healing process. The cancers that have responded the best during animal testing have been colon and gastric cancers. In collaboration with other institutions, the goal within the next three years is to design a drug capable of freezing these wound-healing cells in humans and eventually begin clinical trials. This research will allow for the targeting of abnormal cells rather than specific cancer cells, which would allow for a more universal treatment of cancer.

April 11, 2017 - Gut Bacteria "Mismatch" Could Increase Gastric Cancer Risk

According to research recently published in PLOS Genetics, it was discovered that not only does Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) evolve rapidly and cause issues within the gastrointestinal tract but can also spread to different ethnicities and form subpopulations that are significantly different from previous generations of the bacterium. This new research indicates that the presence of the bacterium in certain ethnicities may lead to gastrointestinal issues. Lead researchers Kaisa Thorell, MSc, PhD and Koji Yahara, PhD, from Sweden and Japan, respectively, have analyzed hundreds of H.pylori sequences from multiple continents. Individuals in Latin American populations were found to have a higher mortality rate due to gastric cancers because of a higher incidence of H. pylori infection, increasing the odds of individuals having the genetic "mismatch" between human and bacterium. The hope is to evaluate levels of virulence by comparing genomics of the bacterium and the host within different ethnicities living in countries outside of their origin.

April 5, 2017 - Wnt10B is Critical for The Progression of Gastric Cancer

Wnt proteins have been associated with embryogenesis via the regulation of cell fate and pattern formation, as well as human cancer development. Wnt10B expression in the regulation of gastric cancer cell proliferation and migration was studied in addition to its association in human gastric cancer tissue specimens. The data collected revealed that upregulated Wnt10B mRNA from tissue samples was associated with gastric cancer metastasizing to lymph nodes. By reducing Wnt10b expression, gastric cancer cell proliferation decreased in addition to preventing tumor cell expansion. Overall, the study concluded that Wnt10B expression performs an important role in gastric cancer in vitro, therefore by targeting Wnt10B expression there may be a new form of controlling gastric cancer.

April 4, 2017 - Predictive Factors for Lymph Node Metastasis in Early Gastric Cancer with Lymphatic Invasion After Endoscopic Resection

Lymph node (LN) metastasis is found in about 5-10% of patients who undergo additional surgery after non-curative endoscopic submucosal dissection (ESD). Lymphatic invasion after ESD is regarded as non-curative resection due to the risk of reginal LN metastasis. The goal of the study was to identify predictive factors for LN metastasis in early gastric cancer (EGC) with lymphatic invasion after endoscopic resection. It was found that the number of lymphatic tumor emboli and presence of papillary adenocarcinoma were significant predictors for LN metastasis in patients with lymphatic invasion after endoscopic resection.

March 30, 2017 - HIPEC Well Tolerated in Gastric Carcinomas

A recent study shows that patients with gastric cancer and positive cytology or low-volume carcinomatosis experienced few postoperative complications after receiving laparoscopic preoperative hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemoperfusion (HIPEC). HIPEC is a procedure that delivers high concentrated, chemotherapy treatment directly into the abdomen. Brian D. Badgwell, MD, MS and colleagues evaluated the effectiveness of HIPEC through a minimally invasive approach without surgery or chemotherapy for those diagnosed with gastric cancer and those whose cells have tested positive for any low-volume cancer metastasis. Depending on how patients did when treated with systemic chemotherapy went on to receive laparoscopic HIPEC.

March 27, 2017- Former Pitcher with Orioles, Phillies Dies at 54 of Stomach Cancer

Todd Frohwirth, a former major league pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles and Philadelphia Phillies, died on Sunday, March 26, 2017 from stomach cancer at 54 years of age. Prior to his passing, Frohwirth was a scout for the Orioles and also a high school basketball coach where he led two teams to state championship games in his home-state of Wisconsin.

April 3, 2017- Cancer Risk Predicted by Telomere Length

Telomeres, the caps of DNA at the end of chromosomes, are crucial to basic biology and have been linked to aging, cancer, and other conditions. Telomere length is associated with cancer risk, according to new research at the University of Pittsburgh. While short telomeres have been linked to cancer, longer telomeres have been found to carry a higher incidence for cancer risk for some tumors. The shortest telomeres had a 63 percent more risk for stomach cancer. The ongoing research will allow for a greater understanding of basic biological phenomena and its relationship to cancer.

March 30, 2017 - 6 Warning Signs of Stomach Cancer That Have Nothing to Do with Pain

Stomach cancer has a reputation for being one of the most painful forms of cancer, but for many pain is not an indicator of the diseases' warning signs. Typically, the most common feature of the early stages of stomach cancer may be that there are no symptoms at all. Approximately 1 in every 111 adults will develop stomach cancer in their lifetime, and the likelihood of men developing stomach cancer is higher when compared to women. Six symptoms to look out for include blood in your stool or vomit; decreased appetite or feeling fuller quicker; your insides hurting constantly; unexplained weight loss; returning heart burn; and bloating, diarrhea and constipation. Any indication of these symptoms should be brought up to your physician to rule out any possibility of stomach cancer.

February 27, 2017 – Risk Marker for Stomach Cancer Uses Acid Sensors to Control Colonization

A team of scientists from Stanford University and the University of Oregon may have discovered a new understanding of how Heliobacter pylori (H.pylori), a common bacteria found in the gut of most individuals, increases the risk for stomach cancer. H. Pylori typically does not cause any negative symptoms to most individuals who are infected but those who are do run the risk of forming ulcers. With the increased risk of gastric ulcers, H.pylori may also be responsible for increased chance of gastric cancers, leading researchers to believe that the bacterium could serve as a risk marker for stomach cancer. Researchers at Stanford are analyzing what drives the bacteria into "hiding" from acidic areas of the stomach by studying mutations the bacteria may have, and how such mutations make H.pylori susceptible to stomach acid and preventing bacteria growth. The results may lead to an effective treatment for H.pylori infections which in turn could also prevent stomach cancer. H.pylori is commonly treated with antibiotics as well as acid suppressors to alleviate ulcer symptoms and speed up the healing process.

February 27, 2017 – Kinase Discovery Sheds New Light on Several Disease Processes

New light on a factor involved on some diseases, including gastric cancer, has been cast through research carried in New Zealand in collaboration with Australian scientists. Research led by Dr. Peter Mace has led to the study of a protein called Apoptosis signal-regulating kinase 1 (ASK1). ASK 1 acts as a signaling protein known for its role on how the cell responds to damage and works towards programmed cell death, preventing the further development of diseases in the body. The study of kinases has led to the development of new drugs due to their structure and how compounds are able to bind to them, but more research needs to be conducted in order to understand how these kinases are controlled.

February 14, 2017 - How Cancer Tumors Exploit Neuronal Signals

A new paper by neuroscientists at Stanford University reviews how tumors exploit neuronal signals. It has been noted that cancer cells not only grow near nerves, but also respond to chemical signals neurons secrete.  Cancer cells are known for their ability to use the body for their own growth by using blood vessels as a nutrient source, secreting chemicals to stop certain immune responses and now by silencing neurons which block the brain from receiving signals that prevent tumor growth. Neuron silencing has been found in stomach cancer. Recent work by Timothy Wang, M.D. at Columbia showed that blocking a neurotransmitter in the nerves that line the stomach could be a new therapy in treating cancers by targeting nearby nerves. While the investigation of neurons' role in cancer has only occurred in a handful of cancers, there is still much more to be studied on the relationship between cancer cells and nerve cells.

February 3, 2017 - Stomach Cancer: Watch Out for Chronic Indigestion, Constant Tiredness

Stomach cancer presents a variety of challenges due to the difficulty of properly narrowing its symptoms and methods of treatment. While one of the more common symptoms is chronic indigestion, patients who find themselves feeling rather full after small meals and complain of tiredness are recommended to address these concerns with a physician. Diet is not the only risk factor of gastric cancer but also lifestyle and genetics where symptoms may present themselves in different ways. Once stomach cancer has been properly diagnosed, there are a variety of treatment methods including drugs, chemotherapy, and surgery which may be total or partial removal of the stomach in addition to any surrounding lymph nodes.  It is important to take the necessary steps to live and maintain a healthy lifestyle in order to prevent stomach cancer and to not ignore any symptoms since early detection is in favor of curing stomach cancer.

February 3, 2017- Bevacizumab and Perioperative Chemotherapy for Esophago-gastric Cancers

Bevacizumab is not recommended in conjunction with perioperative chemotherapy for patients with Esophago-gastric cancers. Studies show that perioperative chemotherapy improves clinical outcomes of patients affected with such cancers. In a recent study, patients were given Bevacizumab and chemotherapy and the remaining patients were only given chemotherapy alone, the results showed that patients given Bevacizumab and chemotherapy did not  improve the 3-year overall survival rate compared to those who were only given chemotherapy. Bevacizumab was also found to prevent surgical wounds from properly healing and also increased other post-operative complications.

February 2, 2017 - IBM's Watson for Oncology in First Community Hospital

A new data platform known as Watson for Oncology will soon be assisting oncologists with the care of their cancer patients.  Watson for Oncology will be installed at the Jupiter Medical Center in Florida, making it the first hospital to use cognitive computing for cancer treatment. Watson for Oncology has been used in a number of cancer centers and has provided various treatment recommendations. Watson for Oncology uses over hundreds of medical journals and textbooks, and millions of pages of text to properly identify and rank evidence-based treatment options, including how drugs and other cancer related treatments may be administered. The main cancers Watson for Oncology can assist clinicians with treatment plans for include breast, lung, colorectal, cervical, ovarian, and gastric cancers.

January 31, 2017 - Breath Test Shows Promise for Noninvasive Diagnosis of Esophageal, Stomach Cancer

There is new promise for early detection of esophageal and gastric cancer in latest study conducted by Sheraz Markar, MBBCHir, MA,Msc,MRCS and colleagues which may replace endoscopies with a simple breath test. Breath tests would decrease the number of unnecessary endoscopies and eventually be used as a form of early detection of esophageal and stomach cancers. The study conducted by Markar and colleagues identified 13 volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and out of the 13, 5 VOCs were found to contain high percentages of sensitivity and specificity of esophago-gastric cancer. In order to determine if the breath test is a reliable indicator, larger trials must be conducted and will be led over the next 3 years.

January 25, 2017 - Racial, Ethnic Disparities Identified in Young Gastric Cancer Patients

At the Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium, Dr. Ibrahim Nassour, MD and colleagues at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas presented data that outlined the different characteristics of gastric cancer patients by race and ethnicity.  The researchers looked at the information of over 5,000 patients with gastric adenocarcinoma under the age of 45. They found that non-Hispanic whites presented with tumors in the Cardia more often than other groups and that the median overall survival was higher for Asians than for non-Hispanic whites, Hispanics and blacks. They also found that Hispanics and blacks lacked health insurance more often than Asians and whites, and were more likely to make less than the median income compared to Asians and whites. Future research was recommended to explore these differences along racial and ethnic lines to further understand how biological differences and disparities in access to healthcare contribute to differences in disease outcome.

January 23, 2017 – Survival Doubled with Trastuzumab Beyond Progression in HER2+ Gastric Cancers

Results from a retrospective multi-center study demonstrated potential benefit in the continuation of trastuzumab (anti-HER2 or Herceptin) therapy alongside second-line chemotherapy. The study looked at 104 patients with HER2-positive advanced gastric or gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) adenocarcinoma whose tumor progressed after first-line treatment with trastuzumab and platinum-based chemotherapy. The researchers compared patients who continued trastuzumab in combination with second-line chemotherapy with patients who were placed on second-line chemotherapy alone, and found that continuation of trastuzumab increased progression-free survival and overall survival. According to the lead investigator of the study, Juliette Palle, a resident at Hopital Europeen Georges Pompidou in Paris, these results should lead to a randomized clinical trial aimed at studying the continuation of trastuzumab in the second-line setting in HER2-positive advanced gastric cancer/GEJ patients, which is already an accepted treatment for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer. These results were presented at the 2017 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium.

January 23, 2017 – New Insight into Origin of Stomach Cancer

It has been previously accepted that gastric cancer follows the damage and subsequent loss of acid-secreting cells in the stomach, but recent studies published inGastroenterology by researchers at the Washington University School of Medicine and the Siteman Cancer Center of Barnes-Jewish Hospital challenged that paradigm. In a mouse model, the researchers found that damage to those acid-secreting cells, on its own, is not sufficient to transform the cells of the stomach into cancerous cells. While it was thought that the dying cancer cells were providing the signal to nearby cells to drive precancerous metaplasia, the results suggest that the signals are coming from somewhere else, according to Joseph Barclaff, a doctoral student in the lab of Jason C. Mills, MD, PhD, a professor of medicine in the division of Gastroenterology. Understanding the mechanism behind the development of metaplasia will, argues Dr. Mills, make it "more likely we'll be able to interrupt the cascade and prevent stomach cancer."

January 19, 2017 - Opdivo (nivolumab) Demonstrated Efficacy and Improved Survival

Bristol-Myers Squibb announced the results of their phase 3 randomized clinical trial (ONO-4538-12) to assess the safety and efficacy of Opdivo (nivolumab) in patients with unresectable, previously-treated advanced or recurrent gastric and gastroesophageal cancer. The 12-month overall survival (OS) was 26.6% in the patients who were treated with Opdivo compared with 10.9% in the patients treated with the placebo, and the objective response rate in the Opdivo-treated group was 11.2% with a median response duration of 9.53 months, compared to 0% response in the placebo group. The Opdivo-treated patients and the patients given the placebo also had similar rates of treatment-related adverse events.

January 19, 2017 – ACG guideline expands indications for H. pylori testing and treatment

The American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) has released new guidelines for the treatment of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection in North America. Dr. William S. Chey, MD, FACG, Division of Gastroenterology, University of Michigan Health System and colleagues wrote in an article published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology that significant advances have been made since the last guideline was published in 2007. According to Chey, the guidelines now expand testing for H. pylori to patients taking aspirin or NSAIDs, patients with unexplained iron deficiency anemia and patients with idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura. The guidelines also place more emphasis on the issue of antibiotic resistance, highlighting the importance of asking about previous antibiotic exposure, and transitioning to quadruple therapy as first-line treatment, instead of triple therapy. Finally, in terms of long-term solutions for reducing H. pylori infection, Dr. Chey and colleagues reported phase 3 results from a Chinese trial of an H. pylori  vaccine, which "provided about 70% protection against H. pylori  acquisition in children."

January 10, 2017 - Clinical Trial to Start to Assess Immunotherapy Combo in Gastric Cancer

Aduro Biotech has developed an immunotherapy drug, CRS-207, that uses an engineered version of the Listeria bacteria to induce a robust immune response against tumor cells. CRS-207 targets tumor cells via the protein mesothelin, which is over-expressed in many tumor types, including gastric cancers. Pre-clinical studies have shown that combining CRS-207 with a PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor in gastric cancer "…has resulted in synergistic anti-tumor activity…" which the company hopes will be reproduced in the clinical setting, according to Dirk G. Brockstedt, PhD, the executive vice president of research and development at Aduro.  Aduro and Merck are collaborating on a phase 1 trial to study the combination of CRS-207 with Keytruda, an anti-PD-1 antibody, which is enrolling patients with metastatic gastric cancer who failed two previous therapies. The trial is set to begin in 2017.

January 6, 2017 – Halozyme Cancer Drug Does Well in Phase 2 (HALO)

Halozyme Therapeutics Inc. (HALO) developed a drug, PEGPH20 that targets and retards Hyaluronan (HA), which accumulates around the cells of some types of cancer and restricts blood flow, limiting access of other anti-cancer drugs to the tumor site. The drug, in combination with Abraxane and gemcitabine showed promising results and is currently being studied in combination with Keytruda for the treatment of gastric cancer.

January 6, 2017 – Stem Cell Research: How Scientists Grew Stomach Tissue in a Lab

James M. Wells, the head of the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Pluripotent Stem Cell Facility, and colleagues have successfully grown the fundus region of the stomach, an accomplishment that followed their successful cultivation of the antrum of the stomach two years prior. This breakthrough that was published in the journal Nature, will allow scientists to study stomach diseases in human stomach cells instead of in laboratory mice, including Helicobacter pylori infection. The organoids are currently being used to model how the stomach cells respond to H. pylori infection, a risk factor for the development of gastric cancer.

January 6, 2017 - Novel Agents for Gastroesophageal Cancer

In a discussion on OncLive, Dr. Manish Shah, a member of the DDF Medical Advisory Board, along with Dr. Yelena Janjigian and Dr. Ian Chau discussed the latest drugs for the treatment of gastroesophageal cancer. Dr. Shah discussed new Stat3 inhibitor in phase 3 clinical trials that was developed by Boston Biomedical. Stat3 is a protein that gives cancer cells stem-like properties, allowing them to proliferate more actively and become resistant to chemotherapy. In terms of the HER2 pathway.  Dr. Janjigian discussed an alternative to trastuzumab called pertuzumab, which binds to a different part of HER2. That drug is in the clinical trial phase, looking at the combination of 5FU and Trastuzumab with or without pertuzumab. Another drug that Dr. Shah discussed was an MMP-9 inhibitor that is in phase 3 trials for gastric cancer. MMP-9 is part of a group of enzymes called Matrix Metalloproteinases that allow the tumor to grow and invade surrounding tissue, and the inhibitor that is being tested has shown some promising results. Finally, Dr. Chau brought up the anti-Claudin 18.2 monoclonal antibody IMAB362 that was tested in combination with EOX (epirubicin/oxaliplatin/capecitabine) in a phase 2 study. Claudin 18.2 is a good target because it is isolated to the gastric mucosa and not the rest of the body, and results from that study show an increase in overall survival and in progression-free survival.  According to Dr. Shah, "…drug development has really accelerated in gastric cancer…," and more work is needed to sequence these drugs for maximum efficacy, to understand the molecular profiles of gastric tumors, and to manage patient side effects for improved treatment outcome and quality of life.

January 5, 2017 – Breathalyzer Distinguishes Among 17 Diseases at Once

Illness can change the metabolism of our cells so that they produce a certain profile of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) that are different from that of healthy individuals. These VOCs are exhaled, which allows them to be detected in a non-invasive manner. Hossam Haick of the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and his research team developed the "Na-Nose" that uses gold nanoparticles and carbon nano-tubes, in combination with a computer program, to distinguish these different VOC profiles.  In fact, the technology they developed is able to distinguish between 17 different diseases at early stages, including gastric cancer, which the technology could detect with greater than 90% accuracy. The team is currently working on reducing the size of their detector so that it can be used with a smartphone.

January 4, 2017 – Esophageal Cancer Genomic Analysis Uncovers Disease Subtypes

Adam Bass, a member of the DDF Medical Advisory Board, led a research team from The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) Research Network at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute to study the DNA-level differences between esophageal carcinomas. They analyzed samples from patients with esophageal adenocarcinoma (EAC) and esophageal squamous cell carcinoma (ESCC) and noticed differences in the genomes of the samples collected from each cancer type. The results, which were published in the journal Nature, provide further support for the argument that esophageal carcinoma is not just one cancer. The research team found that the squamous cell carcinomas most resembled head and neck cancers, while the adenocarcinomas most closely resembled gastric adenocarcinomas. In terms of what this means clinically, the researchers wrote that their analyses "…therefore argue against approaches that combine EAC and ESCC for clinical trials of neoadjuvant, adjuvant or systemic therapies."

January 3, 2017 - Ongoing Research in Gastric Cancer: Antiangiogenic Therapy Upfront and Immunotherapy

In a discussion on OncLive, Dr. Manish Shah, a member of the DDF Medical Advisory Board, along with Dr. Yelena Janjigian, Dr. Johanna Bendell, and Dr. Ian Chau talked about the results and implications of clinical trials research in the context of immunotherapy and anti-angiogenic therapy for gastric cancer. Dr. Shah discussed studies on the anti-angiogenic drug ramucirumab and the HER2-targeting drug Herceptin (trastuzumab), which showed that the dosages for these drugs needed to be increased for gastric cancer patient benefit in comparison to the dosages recommended for other cancer types. Drug serum concentration tends to be correlated positively with patient outcome, but more studies are being done with ramucirumab in combination with Taxol to further support that phenomenon. In terms of checkpoint inhibitors, Dr. Janjigian says that there are subtypes of gastric cancer that respond very well to PD-1 and PD-L1 inhibition, specifically MSI or EBV positive tumors. Furthermore, the combination of anti-PD-1 and anti-CTLA4 further activates the immune system, giving higher response rates at a level of toxicity comparable to 5-FU/Platinum therapies. Dr. Chau and Dr. Bendell also mentioned new studies that combine a checkpoint inhibitor with an anti-angiogenic drug, which seem to have low toxicity to patients. However, the doctors argue that these immunotherapy drugs are not suited for every patient because they take so long to work.

January 2, 2017 - Positive Side Effects: Your New Year's Resolutions Could Reduce Your Cancer Risk

According to the Huntsman Cancer Institute, lifestyle changes associated with New Year's Resolutions like exercising more, drinking and smoking less, and eating better are also important for protecting ourselves against cancer. A clinical investigator at Huntsman Cancer Institute, Dr. Anna Beck argues that if everyone stopped smoking, "…we would probably reduce our risks of getting cancers by well over 30 percent." Exercise is also important. Dr. Beck says that cancers like stomach cancer, among other cancer types, are tied to being overweight.  She recommends 150 minutes of moderate exercise every week and choosing fruits and vegetables over sugary options, and if added in increments, we can be more successful at incorporating these habits into our daily routines.

January 1, 2017 - Fighting back against stomach bacterium Helicobacter pylori

Professor Donald R. Ronning of the University of Toledo is fighting H. pylori with neutrons. In a study published in the journal PNAS, Dr. Ronning and his team use the neutrons to determine the structure of the bacteria at the molecular level, specifically focusing on a special enzyme that allows the bacteria to synthesize vitamin K2.  The research team determined the structure of the enzyme's binding sites with the hope that a drug can be designed to block the function of the enzyme, and because this enzyme is unique to H. pylori, any drug made to target the enzyme could eradicate H. pylori without affecting the beneficial bacteria that reside in the gut.

November 14, 2016 – New Evidence-Based Guideline on HER2 Testing for Patients with Gastric Cancer

The College of American Pathologists (CAP), the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) spearheaded the effort and recently released an evidence-based clinical practice guideline on human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) testing for patients with gastroesophageal cancers. DDF's President and Founder Debbie Zelman took part in this effort by serving as an advocate on the panel.

September 13, 2016 – The Sooner the Better: Palliative Care for Cancer

Joseph A. Greer, PhD, department of Psychiatric Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital, presented a recent study at the 2016 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Palliative Care in Oncology Symposium. The study followed 350 patients who were recently diagnosed (eight weeks prior to study or sooner) with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), small cell lung cancer, or a gastrointestinal cancer, including gastric cancer. Half of the patients received palliative care and the other half did not. The results showed that after 24 weeks, the group that received early palliative care had less depression than the untreated group, which might be due to the active coping strategies that were developed because of the palliative care interventions. However, when analyzed by cancer type, the patients diagnosed with gastrointestinal cancers showed improvement in quality of life by 12 weeks regardless of early palliative care intervention.

September 13, 2016 – Study Finds the Unexpected Combination of These Two Ingredients Dramatically Lowers Cancer Risk

Though capsaicin, the compound found in chili peppers, has been associated with the development of stomach cancer, when it is combined with the compound 6-gingerol, which is found in the ginger root, the combination boasts anti-cancer benefits. Scientists from the American Chemical Society (ACS) performed a study in which tumor-prone mice were fed 6-gingerol, capsaicin, or a combination of both and subsequent lung tumor development was observed. In the capsaicin-treated group, all mice developed lung tumors, while in the 6-gingerol-treated group, only half had tumors. Surprisingly, in the group that was fed both compounds, only 20% of the mice developed lung tumors.  The conclusion was that these compounds interact with each other to form a potent cancer-fighting compound.

September 13, 2016 – Scientists Discover Potential Mechanism for Early Detection, Better Treatment of Gastric Cancer

In June of 2016, a team of researchers led by Assistant Professor Polly Chen and Professor Patrick Tan from the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore (CSI Singapore) published a study in the journal Gastroenterology about the role of changes in ribonucleic acid (RNA) in the development of gastric cancer. These changes are caused by RNA editing, which involves the proteins ADAR1 and ADAR2. ADAR1 is cancer-promoting, and ADAR2 is a cancer suppressor, and the imbalance of the ratio of ADAR1 to ADAR2 determines cancer outcome. Unlike changes in DNA, these RNA editing markers can be measured in precancerous samples, making them good tools for screening and early detection of stomach cancer.

September 11, 2016 – Urine Tests Can Detect Cancer Marker

A research group led by Professor Zhu Zhenggang and Yu Yingyan, from the Shanghai Research Institute of Digestive Surgery has found that stomach cancer markers can be detected in urine samples, forgoing the need for an intimidating gastroscope test. They compared the metabolites found in the urine of patients with stomach cancer and healthy controls and found 17 metabolites, including ten amino acids and four organic metabolites that were significantly different between the two groups. These 14 metabolites had better diagnostic value than the existing blood biomarkers and present a potential non-invasive method for detecting stomach cancer.

September 9, 2016 – Biosimilar Manufacturers to Tackle Cancer

Samsung Bioepis is seeking approval from the European Medicines Agency this month for the drug SB3, a biosimilar for Herceptin, for the treatment of breast cancer. The company also found that SB3 is equally effective for gastric cancer. Since drugs like Herceptin are approaching the patent cliff, South Korean biopharmaceutical companies are focusing on providing biosimilars, which offer the same clinical benefit as the original drug, but at a much lower price point.

August 26, 2016 – Immunotherapy on the Horizon in Gastric Cancer

In an interview with Targeted Oncology, Zev Wainberg, MD, assistant professor of medicine, UCLA Health, discussed agents that are currently being tested for gastric cancer applications in clinical trials. Dr. Wainberg reported that the results from the pembrolizumab (anti-PD-1 antibody) trials show that "there is this group of patients that respond, and these things really need to be reproduced in a much larger set of data to be confident that it's real."  In other drug trials that test the efficacy of the anti-PD-1 antibodies Avelumab and Durvalumab, the responses are about 10-20%. "While the utilization of immunotherapy in gastric cancer may not be as clear cut as it is in melanoma or lung cancer, Zev Wainberg, MD, illustrates some trials where the therapy type is breaking through." One of the biggest challenges Dr. Wainberg sees in using immunotherapy for the treatment of gastric cancer is in "knowing which patient groups, based on molecular classification, are likely to gain the most benefit from these treatments."

August 18, 2016 – Role of Adjuvant Chemotherapy in a Perioperative Chemotherapy Regimen for Gastric Cancer

Sven Lichthardt et al. (2016) presented their study on the role of post-operative chemotherapy (post-CTx) in patients who have already been treated with perioperative (pre-surgery) chemotherapy and radical surgery in an article published in the journal BMC Cancer. The research group evaluated patient data from 1992 to 2013, for a total of 116 patients who completed perioperative chemotherapy treatment for locally advanced gastric cancer. Within that group, they identified patients who had undergone curative surgery and compared the outcomes of those who subsequently received post-CTx and those who did not. The results showed that post-CTx resulted in shorter long-term survival compared to the untreated group, but the difference was not statistically significant. This raises questions about the benefit of post-operative chemotherapy in patients who have been treated with perioperative chemotherapy and radical surgery.

August 12, 2016 – Which is Better for Gastric Cancer Patients, Perioperative or Adjuvant Chemotherapy: a Meta-Analysis

A recent meta-analysis on studies performed in China and Japan was used to compare prognosis and safety between perioperative chemotherapy (administered prior to surgery) and adjuvant chemotherapy (administered after surgery) to identify the better chemotherapy option for gastric cancer. Five randomized controlled trials and six clinical controlled trials involving 1,240 patients were eligible for analysis. Compared with the adjuvant chemotherapy group, the perioperative chemotherapy group had significantly better prognosis. The two groups showed no significant differences in the post-operative complication rates or adverse effects of chemotherapy. Perioperative chemotherapy showed improved survival compared to adjuvant chemotherapy for gastric cancer.

August 8, 2016 - Former NFL player, Assistant George Yarno Dies from Cancer

The Jacksonville Jaguars announced on Monday night the passing of George Yarno, former NFL player and coach, who died at the age of 58 after a three-year battle with stage IV stomach cancer. He was the former offensive line coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars, and is survived by his wife, daughter and two sons.

August 6, 2016 – The Best (and Worst) Lunchmeats for Your Sandwich

Studies show that the risk of stomach cancer increases by 18% in individuals who regularly consume processed meats. This may be due to the preservatives that are added to these meats, especially nitrites, which can react with natural compounds in the meat to form a compound called nitrosamine. Nitrosamines are a suspected carcinogen.

August 5, 2016 – Helicobacter pylori and Gastric Cancer

Infection with the bacteria Helicobacter pylori has been associated with an increased risk of the development of gastric cancer, and has been labeled a Group I carcinogen by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).  Although no causative role has been definitively established, virulent strains of H. pylori that express CagA, a secreted protein, may induce chronic inflammation, which leads to tissue damage and subsequent development of stomach cancer.

August 2, 2016 – Turbocharging Patients' T-cells to Kill Their Own Cancer

In 1968, Dr. Steven Rosenberg, chief of surgery at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, Maryland, observed an extraordinary phenomenon, in which a patient's immune system had eliminated cancer. This passion for understanding how and why this occurred has motivated his research, and now, Dr. Rosenberg, along with other heavy hitters like Dr. Carl June of University of Pennsylvania and Dr. Michel Sadelain of Memorial Sloan-Kettering,  is pushing the boundaries in the field of cell therapy. Unlike the checkpoint inhibitors that usually come to mind when we think of immunotherapy, cell therapy is more personalized. The technique involves extracting the patient's own immune cells, specifically T cells, activating them to target their specific cancer, and putting them back into the patient's body so that they can do what they were created to do: eliminate cancer. According to Carl June, "one of these cells can kill up to 100,000 cancer cells". That is powerful. Though this is exciting, the treatment is currently only effective for some blood cancers, and there is still more work to be done to control harmful side effects and to extend the therapy to other types of malignancies, like stomach cancer.

May 6, 2016 – Human-Derived Antibody Can Kill Cancer Cells without Harming Healthy Cells

Dr. Edward F. Patz, Jr. and colleagues at Duke University Department of Pharmacology and Cancer Biology explored an observation that some patients with lung cancer never progress to advanced disease because of the presence of a specific antibody targeting the protein Complement Factor H (CFH). This protein inhibits another complement protein called C3b, which causes cell membranes to be disrupted. This anti-CFH antibody was tested in lung, breast and gastric cancer cell lines and in tumor-bearing mice to determine its effects on these cancer types.  The results, which were published in the journal Cell Reports on May 5, 2016,  showed that the anti-CFH antibodies were able to kill cancer cells while leaving healthy cells alone, thus causing no adverse effects. Additionally, an adaptive immune response was also initiated by the disrupted cells, leading to a more systemic attack on tumor cells. This approach is different from previously studied immunotherapeutic approaches because the antibody is not synthetic, but is made endogenously by the human body, weakening the cancer cells' defense mechanisms and leaving them vulnerable to attack by the immune system. Perhaps these results might lead to a therapy that helps to kill or slow gastric tumor growth with few side effects.

April 26, 2016 – Immunotherapy Doubts Fading in GI Cancers

Christopher R. Heery, MD, an immunotherapy research leader at the National Cancer Institute (NCI), delivered a presentation at the 1st Annual School of Gastrointestinal Oncology. According to Dr. Heery, "Immunotherapy approaches are showing early signs of activity against a range of gastrointestinal (GI) cancers, defying the skeptical view that these tumors would not respond to the emerging agents succeeding in other malignancies."

April 26, 2016 – Processed Meat Linked to Stomach Cancer?

According to a report published by the World Cancer Research Fund International (WCRFI), the consumption of processed meats and foods preserved by salting increase the risk of developing stomach cancer. The report showed that consuming the equivalent of two slices of bacon per day increases the risk of developing stomach cancer by 18%. In light of this finding, the WCRFI has recommended against the consumption of processed meats. In defense of processed meats, the North American Meat Institute (NAMI) says that the role of Helicobacter pylori infection appears to be of greater concern in the development of stomach cancer. Betsy Booren, the Vice President of Scientific Affairs at NAMI maintains that "consumers can continue to enjoy processed meats as a part of their healthy, balanced diet."

April 16, 2016 – B.C. Researchers Discover Rare Genetic Mutations That Lead To Type of Stomach Cancer

Two researchers from British Columbia have been credited with discovering rare genetic mutations that cause a gastric condition which often result in stomach cancer. The researchers identified "three extremely rare genetic mutations that cause gastric adenocarcinoma and proximal polyposis of the stomach" (GAPPS). GAPPS is a rare condition in which the upper part of the stomach is lined with benign growths that may become cancerous. This discovery will allow doctors to administer DNA tests to search for those specific indicators to better determine whether an individual might develop stomach cancer.

March 24, 2016 – Technion's Artificial Nose Inventor Makes ‘Good Guy' List

Congratulations to Professor Hossam Haick of the Technion whose research led to technology that can smell out cancer! Professor Haick's contributions to the field have earned him a place in GOOD Magazine's list as one of the 100 most influential people in the world who are changing the world in a positive manner.

March 24, 2016 - Disease-Fighting Food Is Color Coded

Frances Largeman-Roth, Registered Dietician and author of Eating in Color, cites which color food is good for fighting which diseases. In the red family, watermelon is the best red fruit because it's high in lycopene which can help fight lung cancer, stomach cancer, and prostate cancer. Orange foods, such as mangoes, carrots and sweet potatoes have lots of antioxidants that boost the immune system. Lemons and other citrus fruits are high in Vitamin C and also bioflavonoids. Bioflavonoids help us ward off chronic conditions such as cancer and heart disease.

March 21, 2016 - Screening For Early Stage Stomach Cancer with a Blood Test

Researchers from MirXES, in Asia, have developed a simple blood test to detect early stage stomach cancer. The test, currently undergoing clinical validation, detects microRNAs circulating in the bloodstream. MicroRNAs are a class of non-coding RNAs that play key roles in the regulation of gene expression.

March 15, 2016 - Gut's Reaction to 'Switched On' Protein Could Prevent Stomach Cancer

Dr. Menheniott's research at the Murdoch Children's Research Institute has found protein GKN2, which acts as an anti-inflammatory agent - effectively stopping stomach cancer from developing. When this protein was absent or ‘switched off', mice with H. pylori were more susceptible to developing stomach cancer.

March 14, 2016 - Device to Detect Stomach Cancer Developed

Dr. Cabibihan, the Co-Lead Principal Investigator on the research project, and his team have developed a device to detect early stages of stomach cancer. The capsule-sized equipment, which examines the stomach to detect H. pylori and gases, and is being developed by Qatar University (QU) in partnership with TUFTS University and University of Washington, could replace an endoscope.

March 9, 2016 - UNM Research Shows Promise In Preventing Stomach Cancer

According to Associate Professor and Researcher Ellen Beswick, PhD, a research team at the UNM School of Medicine is focusing on a common germ that lives in the digestive tract and can lead to ulcers. Scientists believe there is up to a six-time greater association between this type of bacterium, Helicobacter pylori, and gastric cancer. "A link between chronic inflammation and tumor development and growth has been established," Beswick says. "However, specific pathways that can be targeted as new treatment approaches are needed. The study, will further examine the interplay of MK2 activation in tumor cells, fibroblasts and myeloid cells to uncover the mechanisms by which this pathway is a critical contributor to gastric cancer.

March 7, 2016 - Makgeolli Extract May Slow Stomach Cancer

A study by the Korea Food Research Institute has shown that Korean traditional rice wine, or makgeolli, contains a material believed to be effective in slowing the growth of stomach cancer cells. The study discovered that makgeolli curbs the proliferation of stomach cancer tumors when it comes into contact with stomach cancer cells.  Beta sitosterol, mostly contained in rice, is the key ingredient that works against stomach cancer cells, the KFRI said.

January 28, 2016 - Video Intervention Helps Prepare Patients to Participate in Cancer Clinical Trials

A new study shows that educating a patient about clinical trials before he or she seeks an oncologist can improve the patient's decision about whether to join a trial.  Fewer than 5 percent of adult cancer patients participate in a clinical treatment trial.  Two decision-making frameworks will develop an online, video-based educational program in order to assist cancer patients with their options.  Webcasts on various topics affecting stomach cancer patients including clinical trials are available year round in the Lecture Library on the Debbie's Dream Foundation website.

January 7, 2016 - Stomach Cancer: Know These 7 Risk Factors

Increased knowledge of risk factors allows early-stage stomach cancer to be more curable with early detection.  The seven risk factors identified by H. Chung are gender, ethnicity, history of H.pylori or gastritis, genetics, smoking, and diet.  It is crucial to obtain an accurate diagnosis including identifying the stage of cancer.  Proper treatment is also important to improve the quality of life and long-term survival.

December 18, 2015 – From Vigilance to Wellness: Striving for Good Overall Health after Cancer

Following a cancer free diagnosis is not the end of the journey, for many, routine exams are done every three to four months to check for any recurrence of cancer in patients. Many patients returning for these routine exams are overcome with "scanxiety", where they fear these follow up exams will show a chance of recurrence, and the cancer battle starts again. Mary Ann Burg, a professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Central Florida shared that regardless of the type of cancer or treatment or the length of time since treatment, how long they are a survivor, there will almost always be a fear of recurrence. While the day-to-day anxiety may become overwhelming, it is important to note that there are precautionary steps patients can take including talking with their oncologist or primary care physician on follow-up care, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and seeking professional help to alleviate any additional stress or anxiety. Follow-up care is crucial, but in moderation since studies have shown that more follow-up testing does not necessarily lead to more survival. Any additional stress symptoms should be mentioned to a primary care physician to see what they recommend is best for you.

December 18, 2015 – A Touch of Healing: Massage Can Alleviate Symptoms of Cancer, Treatments

Once Shelly Bain began chemotherapy she was referred to a certified oncology massage therapist.  While oncology massage does not factor into longevity, there is quite a list of positive impacts on overall heath. Oncology massage can help alleviate many of the side effects from cancer medications and other stress induced symptoms many patients face while undergoing treatment but the main goal is to provide comfort, stress reduction, and relaxation for patients.  Oncology massage therapists attend various advanced classes, lectures and training in order to become certified. As for potential clients for oncology massage therapists, it is important that they are firm on what type of training their therapist has received including the extent of experience a therapist has had with cancer patients and to always consult a physician before seeking therapy.

August 13, 2015 - ASCO Connection - James Randolph Hillard, MD - DDF Michigan East Chapter Founder Blog

James Randolph "Randy" Hillard, MD is DDF Michigan East Chapter founder and Professor of Psychiatry at the Michigan State University (MSU) Colleges of Medicine. In 2010, he was diagnosed with HER-2, stage IV metastatic gastric cancer, caused by Helicobacter pylori and kept in check, so far, by trastuzumab. He is dedicated to education and advocacy for better prevention, detection, and treatment for stomach cancer.

July 12, 2015 - Top 8 Foods that Help in Fighting Cancer

Nutrition is very important when it comes to keeping our bodies healthy and preventing diseases like stomach cancer. Eight foods that help prevent and/or fight cancer are dark green leafy vegetables, beans, berries, pawpaw and grapes, garlic and ginger, carrots, walnuts, and tomatoes.

June 29, 2015 - Weekly Oraxol for Second-Line Treatment of Metastatic, Recurrent Gastric Cancer

According to Cancer Therapy Advisor, a study was completed to determine the maximum tolerated dose (MTD) of Oraxol and to evaluate the efficacy and safety of the drug as a second-line treatment for metastatic or recurrent gastric cancer. The study found that 9.3% of patients (4 out of 43) achieved a partial response level from treatment and the most common side effects included low white blood cell count and diarrhea.

June 5, 2015 - The 11 Countries with the Highest Rates of Stomach Cancer

According to Insider Monkey, stomach cancer has a high influence on the "11 Countries with the Highest Cancer Rates in the World" list. The eleven countries with the highest stomach cancer rates in the world are Turkmenistan, Belarus, Albania, Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, China, Guatemala, Japan, Mongolia, and the Republic of Korea.

May 22, 2015 - Stay Away From Processed Foods to Avoid Acid Reflux and Potentially Esophageal Cancer

According to the American Cancer Society, 1% of all cancers are of the esophagus, and 80% of people diagnosed with esophageal cancer live less than five years. Acid reflux is a big risk factor, and 80-90% of esophageal cancer patients have it. In order to prevent acid reflux, one should limit alcohol, carbonated drinks, spicy foods, and caffeine, eat slowly, keep the weight down, don't lay down after eating, and wear comfortable clothing.

May 15, 2015 - New Drug Combination Boosts Survival in Advanced Stomach and Esophageal Cancer

Peter Enzinger, MD of the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and a DDF Medical Advisory Board Member will present findings of a recent phase 2 trial examining a new drug combination. The study examined the effects of adding bevacizumab to a standard drug combination for HER2 positive patients. Dr. Enzinger will report the findings during the American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting on Monday June 1, 2015.

May 5, 2015 - 10 Reasons to Eat an Onion

Onions, a vegetable that is part of the allium group, have many benefits relating to cancer, sleep and mood, skin and hair, anti-inflammatory, infections, fever and allergies, diabetes, acne treatment, and toothache. Onions are a strong source of vitamin C and have been inversely related with the risk of stomach and esophageal cancer.

March 22, 2015 - Statins Promising for Decreased Gastric Cancer Risk

Statins, cholesterol lowering drugs, can have a beneficial health effect involving anti-cancer properties. Out of 6 case-control studies that included 5,993 cases of gastric cancer, a 44% decrease risk of gastric cancer was found with the use of a statin. However, the studies did not prove that the medications were directly responsible for benefits.

March 22, 2015 - Drugs to Treat Hereditary Gastric Cancers Found

Although they have yet to be named, certain existing drugs have been found to effectively treat or prevent hereditary stomach and breast cancers. The Molecular Cancer Therapeutics journal suggests that people suffering from these diseases are expected to have relief in the future. Genomic screening was used to search for vulnerabilities in cancer cells that lack E-cadherin, a tumor-suppressor protein.

March 18, 2015 - Controlling Indigestion Problems

A bloated stomach, shortness of breath, and sweating are all signs of indigestion. Stomach cancer and indigestions share similar symptoms, but stomach cancer can also include heartburn, upper abdominal pain, nausea, and loss of appetite. In order to ensure a healthy digestive system, make sure to eat plenty of fiber, drink plenty of water, chew your food, don't overeat, and exercise and see your doctor.

March 14, 2015 - 9 Useful and Healthy Vegetables to Prevent Stomach Cancer

Certain vegetables, such as cabbage, spinach, paprika, beetroot, broccoli, peas, and onions, can help prevent and be used as a treatment for many diseases. Peas, in particular, can help reduce the risk of stomach cancer.

March 13, 2015 - Southampton General Hospital Is The First In The Country To Host A Special Stomach Cancer Event

Southampton General Hospital has been chosen to host "Super Saturday" events in the UK. "Super Saturday's" purpose is to tackle the rise of stomach and esophageal cancer cases. Endoscopies will be carried out throughout the day; the link between persistent heartburn and difficulty swallowing with stomach and esophageal cancers will be taught.

February 25, 2015 - A Faster Way to Try Many Drugs on Many Cancers

This spring, studies will be conducted to screen tumors in thousands of patients in order to see which might be attacked by at least a dozen new drugs. These studies will be done by a federally funded program, and medical facilities like Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York are ready to find answers to which drugs can stop cancer mutations. Genes and mutations can power cancer growth and make cells spread to different parts of the body.

February 20, 2015 - The True Health Benefits Of Garlic

While fish oil is the most utilized supplement in the United States, garlic comes in second place and is used to prevent and treat illnesses such as stomach cancer, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Allicin is the active health benefit ingredient found in garlic but it can be destroyed while cooking and by stomach acid when ingested. Haru Amagase, Wakungal's director of research and development, advises that coated garlic supplements are the only beneficial way for the supplement to be transported toward the intestines.

February 19, 2015 - First Person in UK to Have Stomach Removed By A Robot

Frank Lawson, a 77 year old gardener and retired engineer, is the first person in the UK to have their stomach removed by a robot due to gastric cancer. This eight and a half hour surgery can lead to better outcomes and a quicker recovery time due to the minimally invasive techniques.

February 19, 2015 - Esophageal and Esophagogastric Junction Cancers

Esophageal cancer is the sixth most common cause of cancer deaths worldwide. The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) recently released Guidelines for Esophageal and Esophagogastric Junction (EGJ) Cancers discussing the management of local advanced adenocarcinoma of the esophagus and EGJ. President and Founder of Debbie's Dream Foundation Debbie Zelman contributed to these guidelines as well as members of our Medical Advisory Board: Jaffer Ajani, MD; Charles Fuchs, MD, MPH; David Ilson, MD, PhD; Lawrence Kleinberg, MD; and Mary Mulcahy, MD.

February 18, 2015 - CDH1 Mutations Bring High Gastric Cancer Risk

According to a study published in JAMA Oncology by Samantha Hansford, men who carry the mutation in the E-cadherin (CDH1) gene have a 70% chance of gastric cancer by age 80, while women who carry the gene have a 56% chance of gastric cancer by age 80. E-cadherin (CDH1) is a gene linked to hereditary diffuse gastric cancer. The families used for the study came from multicultural backgrounds and were from regions where gastric cancer rates are low.

February 18, 2015 - Blood Tests Now Identify E-Cadherin Gene in Whanau

The E-cadherin gene affects about 12 whanau Maori, a tribe in New Zealand, and 350 families worldwide. A simple blood test can now tell if the whanau members have the E-cadherin mutation, and it then gives them the option of getting surgery to remove the stomach and risk of getting cancer or taking part in annual checkups to see if the cancer forms.

February 16, 2015 - Eating Carrots Will Keep You Healthy

Carrots not only protect your eyesight, but they also offer protection against cancer. Beta carotene, which is found in carrots, strengthens the immune system and protects the body against cancer and infections. The cooking process helps release more of this important compound.

February 16, 2015 - Weight Is a Breeding Ground For Cancer

Eating healthy, being physically active, and maintaining a healthy weight could prevent one third of cancers. Besides not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight is the most important thing you can do to prevent cancer. In order to maintain a healthy weight, one should eat small amounts of red meat, keep treats sensible, reduce salt intake, limit alcohol, not smoke, take care in the sun, and keep active.

February 13, 2015 - Smoking Kills

Direct smoking, secondhand smoking, chewing tobacco, using pan, and other tobacco products cause various cancers which include stomach cancer. In order to establish a healthy society, teachers, activists, scholars and media will have to play a role in creating awareness and educating people.

February 10, 2015 - Cancer Patients and Doctors Struggle To Predict Survival

Research shows that when patients are told their cancer prognosis, less than half of what the doctor said is retained leading to confusion about survival rates and prognosis. According to Dr. Tomer Levin, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, doctors think of the survival rate they tell patients as a median number, but patients see this number as being concrete and absolute.

February 7, 2015 - World Cancer Day: Foods That Prevent Cancer

World Cancer Day is annually celebrated on February 4th and encourages people to make the right choices when it comes to guarding themselves from cancer. Certain foods, such as processed and red meats, may increase your risk of developing cancer, while other foods, such as fruits and veggies, may help in guarding against and healing cancer.

February 6, 2015 - 10 Cancer Symptoms People Generally Ignore

Some symptoms, such as long lasting sore throat, unexplained weight loss, difficulty swallowing, and bleeding are often ignored due to casual thinking and seasonal patterns. Although they may be minor, these symptoms can be an early sign of cancer, and when addressed, can be treated properly.

January 31, 2015 - S'pore Team Develops Blood Test Cancers

A team of Singaporean scientists from the Agency for Science, Technology and Research have developed a blood test that can detect cancer at its earliest stage, even before symptoms start to appear. This became possible when the team developed a method to measure small changes in gene levels called micro-RNA in blood. This three hour test has achieved more than 90% accuracy in the lab and is planned to be used in hospitals in Singapore in 2017 as a screening tool.

January 26, 2015 - Heartburn Said to be Sign of Stomach or Esophageal Cancer

A new study reveals heartburn for three or more weeks can be a sign of stomach or esophageal cancer. However, only one in two people reported they would visit their doctor if they had heartburn for three or more weeks. Early detection and diagnosis of stomach cancer is critical to more successful treatment outcomes.

January 19, 2015 - Novel MET Inhibitor Elicits 'Dramatic Response' in Gastric and Esophageal Cancers

Preliminary results from a small study examining a small-molecule MET Inhibitor has shown dramatic results in MET-amplified gastric and esophageal cancers. The Chair of the Debbie's Dream Foundation Medical Advisory Board, Dr. Jaffer Ajani, noted that the biomarker and the drug are good and further testing should be pursued.

January 16, 2015 - The Coming Revolution In Much Cheaper Life-Saving Drugs

Randy Hillard, DDF's Michigan East Chapter Founder, understands how expensive stomach cancer infusions can be, so he decided to take matters in his own hands. Randy cast a vote on a Food and Drug Administration panel to recommend the approval of the first in a new class of drugs called "biosimilars." Biosimilars, or biologics, are made from living organisms and can be very complex and costly.

January 16, 2015 - Consume Less Salt to Reduce Stomach Cancer Risk

Not only does a large amount of salt consumption cause high blood pressure, but it may also increase the risk of stomach cancer by encouraging the growth of H. pylori and making cells toxic. The World Health Organization recommends that 5g of salt, which is less than 1 teaspoon, should be the most salt one should have in their diet per day.

January 8, 2015 - 7 Tips For A Successful First Visit To Your Oncologist

It's understandable that you may feel a little nervous or anxious the day of your first visit to your oncologist. Click on the link below to read seven tips for making the most of your first visit and having a successful day.

January 8, 2015 - How to Keep Your Pearly Whites in Top Shape During and after Cancer Treatment

Oral health is not only very important in everyday life, but it is especially important to patients going through chemotherapy. The mouth, gums, and teeth become vulnerable, and dry mouth, also known as xerostomia, can lead to an increased risk for tooth decay. Brushing and flossing frequently, using fluoridated toothpastes and rinses, and getting regular dental checkups are key factors to limiting oral health problems. Sugary foods and drinks may lead to tooth decay, so watching what you eat and brushing after each meal are also important. By taking care of your gums, teeth, and mouth, you'll be able to not only live a healthy lifestyle, but you will also be able to smile with confidence.

January 1, 2015 - 6 Health Benefits of Oranges

Oranges offer many benefits such as boosting energy, lowering cholesterol, and fighting against the common cold. The vitamin C and potassium also found in oranges is good for overall health. Oranges are also rich in citrus limonids, which are proven to fight certain types of cancer including stomach cancer.

December 31, 2014 - Lilly Receives EU Approval For Stomach Cancer Drug Cyramza

Eli Lilly and Company received European regulatory approval for the ramucirumab-based therapy Cyramza, a new treatment for stomach cancer. During phase III trials, the drug showed promising results, such as survival rates and delaying disease progression.

December 30, 2014 - Imugene Hits Milestones On The Road To Her-Vaxx 2015 Clinical Program

According to MENAFN - Proactive Investors, "Her-Vaxx is a proprietary peptide vaccine or immunotherapy that causes the immune system to generate cancer-fighting antibodies." Imugene, the Australian company who created the drug, is ready to start a clinical program for Her-Vaxx, while finalizing the clinical protocol for gastric cancer patients undergoing the Phase Ib/II clinical trial.

December 30, 2014 - Eating More Vegetables Reduces Men's Risk Of Stomach Cancer

An eleven year study by the National Cancer Center in Japan found that men who eat more vegetables have a lower risk of developing distal stomach cancer. On the other hand, women who eat plenty of vegetables do not have the reduced risk as men with stomach cancer.

December 18, 2014 - AstraZeneca's Blockbuster Cancer Drug Gains EU Approval
December 16, 2014 - FDA Grants Orphan Status to Insys' Gastric Cancer Treatment

Insys announced that it has received orphan drug status from the FDA for Liposome Entrapped Paclitaxel Easy to Use (LEP-ETU) for the treatment of advanced gastric cancer. LEP-ETU is a reformulated version of paclitaxel, which has boosted its efficacy and reduced toxicity. Orphan drug designation provides a special status to a drug that treats a rare disease or condition upon request of a sponsor.

December 15, 2014 - Advaxis Announces FDA Acceptance of New Drug Applications

Advaxis is a clinical biotechnology company with a focus on developing cancer immunotherapies. Advaxis is currently working to develop their drug ADXS-cHER2 to target HER2 expressing cancers, such as gastric cancer. ADXS-cHER2 has received orphan drug designation by the FDA for the treatment of osteosarcoma.

December 11, 2014 - Keytruda Effective Against 7 Types Of Cancer And Counting

Merck & Co.'s new drug, Keytruda, is a type of immuno-oncology drug that fights cancer by giving T cells the opportunity to attack hidden cancer cells. Stomach cancer is one of many cancers that Keytruda has a positive testing report.

December 10, 2014 - Imugene Completes $3.5m Capital Raising

Imugene has raised $3.5 million in capital to help pay for trials of its Her-Vaxx anticancer candidate. The funds will be used to manufacture the drug and help fund its Phase Ib/II trial for patients with metastatic gastric cancer.

December 9, 2014 - MatriStem Featured in Annals of Clinical Oncology

MatriStem Surgical Matrix was recently featured in the Annals of Surgical Oncology for reducing the incidence of post-operative leaks in patients undergoing a total gastrectomy. Post-operative leaks are a dangerous complication of the surgery, leading to stricture and possibly death. In a retrospective study, the technology was shown to reduce this complication by 75%.

December 9, 2014 - 2015 Deliver the Dream Schedule

Deliver the Dream will be hosting a series of retreats for families experiencing a serious illness. Each retreat is geared towards a specific illness or crisis providing families with resources and opportunities to network with others who are dealing with a similar situation.

December 7, 2014 - Gastric Cancer Survival Rate in India among the Lowest in the World

Some of the most advanced medical facilities in the world can be found in the city of Mumbai. Yet a study tracking cancer patients from 67 countries found that India's survival rate is low (19%) compared to other countries (25-30% on average). One of the authors cite a lack of equitable healthcare access to diagnose and treat patents as a possible explanation.

December 5, 2014 - Does an Aspirin a Day Really Keep the Doctor Away?

A study this year found that aspirin reduces the risk of certain digestive cancers. Aspirin works as an anti-inflammatory agent becoming an important preventative treatment against gastric cancer. However, it is best to assess personal risk and benefits with a health provider on the daily usage of aspirin.

December 3, 2014 - Long-Term Survival Rate Shows Little Improvement

A study led by the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine analyzed cancer survival trends in England and Wales between 1971 and 2011. For gastric and esophageal cancers there has been little to no improvement in the long-term survival rate since the 1970's. The combination of latent symptoms and delayed diagnosis of these common digestive cancers limits the range of treatment which subsequently hinders the overall survival rate.

December 3, 2014 - Effective Treatment of Advanced Gastric Cancer

Investigators studied the combined drug therapy of docetaxel/oxaliplatin/5-fluorouracil (5-FU) for treatment against advanced gastric cancer. This combined regiment was compared to the standard chemotherapy treatment of docetaxel/oxaliplatin or docetaxel/oxaliplatin/capecitabine. It was concluded through the study that a lower adverse effect and higher tumor response rate were observed with the treatment of docetaxel/oxaliplatin/5-FU compared with the standard mode of care.

December 2, 2014 - Searching for a Trait

Sequencing the whole cancer genome is an effective yet costly tool when analyzing the efficacy of oncological drug treatment. Currently the technology is used to identify DNA alterations in a particular tumor with the goal to evolve the technology into a preventative tool.

December 2, 2014 - Should You Really Go For That Barbecue?

Nutritionists warn that cooking techniques involving high temperatures (over 150 degrees) cause the release of compounds perceived as toxic to human health. Known as polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and heterocyclic amines (HCAs), these compounds are shown to cause several types of cancer when repeatedly consumed. Experts recommend eating fried, roasted, and smoked foods in moderation to guard against cancer.

December 2, 2014 - Cimetidine Has Positive Effects Against Gastric Cancer

Cimetidine is an over-the-counter drug that is traditionally used to control indigestion by blocking histamine receptors in the gut, decreasing the production of gastric acid. The medicine also appears to block histamine receptors in cancer cells and support the immune system's defenses against cancer. Cimetidine has demonstrated positive effects in several cancers including gastric cancer.

December 2, 2014 - Garlic - National Institutes of Health (NIH) National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM)

Dietary benefits of garlic range from lowering cholesterol levels to slowing the development of atherosclerosis. Some studies suggest that garlic may lower the risk of certain cancers; currently a clinical trial shows no correlation between gastric cancer prevention and long term garlic consumption. It is important to disclose complementary health practices such as garlic consumption, as garlic compounds are known to interact with certain drugs.

December 1, 2014 - Fluorescence Microscopy: New 2-D Images Can Detect Cancer Risk

A new method studying protein concentrations found within gastric cells may help identify individuals who are at risk for hereditary diffuse gastric cancer (HDGC). This method can be used as a complementary approach to evaluate the risk of specific protein mutations that may lead to HDGC.

November 28, 2014 - First Targeted Treatment to Boost Survival for Esophageal Cancer

Gefitinib, an EGFR inhibitor, has yielded benefits for patients with a specific type of esophageal cancer. According to results presented at the 2014 NCRI, up to 1 in 6 patients with esophageal cancer have EGFR duplication and the use of Gefitinib increased their survival rates.

November 25, 2014 - Cancer Insurance Checklist

Open enrollment for the Health Insurance Marketplace is open from November 15-February 15. The Cancer Insurance Checklist can help you navigate your insurance needs by allowing you to create side-by-side comparisons of insurance plans, assist you in talking to insurance representatives and your health care provider all while taking into account your personal medical needs. Follow the link below to download a FREE copy now.

November 24, 2014 - Stomach Cancer and BRCA Gene Mutation Lead Patient to Take Action

Debbie's Dream Foundation PREP Mentor Melani Vincelli shared her experience working with doctors and surgeons and the importance of finding the right doctor-patient relationship. Melani was diagnosed with Stage IV gastric cancer five years ago, and as a carrier of the BRCA gene mutation she was considered high risk for developing breast cancer. After fighting cancer and recently undergoing prophylactic surgery Melani now raises her voice to spread awareness and lobby for funding.

November 24, 2014 - Peptic Ulcer, Cancer Bacteria Therapy Discovery

Linolenic acid, a common ingredient in vegetable oils, may help reduce infection with Helicobacter pylori. According to a study on mice, linolenic acid killed H. pylori, the bacteria associated with stomach cancer. Standard antibiotic therapy is effective, but alternative treatments are promising in the face of antibiotic resistance.

November 24, 2014 - Amgen Terminates Gastric Cancer Treatment Studies

Amgen Inc. announced that it has terminated all of its sponsored clinical trials of rilotumumab for advanced gastric cancer after an increased number of deaths were reported. All clinical studies have been stopped and data from each phase is currently undergoing analysis.

November 24, 2014 - Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund Donates $100,000 for Gastric Cancer Research

Founded in memory of the late singer, the Ronnie James Dio Stand Up and Shout Cancer Fund recently donated $100,000 to the T.J. Martell Foundation for Leukemia, Cancer and AIDS Research. The money will be used for the advancement of gastric cancer research at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. The Ronnie James Dio Foundation raises funds to stop cancer before it starts through early detection.

November 23, 2014 - Several Studies Show the European Mistletoe Can Help Various Types of Cancers

A study shows that the European mistletoe may be helpful for individuals with gastric cancer. The study concluded that patients experienced lower occurrences of diarrhea with the combination of mistletoe extract and oral chemotherapy.

November 22, 2014 - 12 Health Benefits of Broccoli

Scientists have found many health benefits associated with the consumption of broccoli such as detoxification, heart health, prevention of osteoarthritis, as well as being an anti-inflammatory and diet aid. Broccoli is also an anti-carcinogenic, containing compounds and nutrients known to guard against cancer. The vegetable is rich in glucoraphanin which can be used by the body to help prevent cancer and eliminate H. pylori, the bacteria associated with stomach cancer.

November 21, 2014 – Almonds Linked as Cancer Killer at BJU Research Lab

A cancer research lab is focusing on the almond's natural effect against cancer cells.  The research denotes that properties within the almonds lead to the destruction of cancerous cells. The almond research has not yielded a cure, but it may demonstrate the importance of nutrition.

November 21, 2014 - Top 10 Most Promising Drugs Guaranteed to Save Lives in 2015

The FDA has approved Cyramza for the treatment of metastatic stomach cancer. Cyramza has made the top 10 list of most promising drugs to save lives in the next year as compiled by Healthcare Global.

November 18, 2014 – Surgery Plus Chemoradiation Linked to Improved Survival Rates for Gastric Cancer Patients

In the last decade, chemoradiation therapy (both chemotherapy and radiation therapy) has improved making it an important tool to consider. In a retrospective study, patients who received chemoradiation after surgery appear to have increased survival rates.  Chemoradiation also showed an increase in recurrence-free survival rates.

November 15, 2014 - Milk Protein Used in Production of Drug Nanocarriers

Drugs that are currently used for the treatment of cancers, specially gastric cancer, have not been designed in a target delivery manner. Therefore, large amount of the drugs must be consumed during the treating process. In addition to its side effects, it causes patients with problems from financial point of view. Milk proteins have been used in the production of the nanocarrier. The production and evaluation of performance of the drug delivery system is at laboratorial stage at the moment.

November 06, 2014 - Extra Stomach Cancer Indications for Cyramza in US

The FDA has approved Cyramza in combination with paclitaxel chemotherapy as a second-line treatment option for patients with advanced gastric cancer or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma. Cyramza is the only FDA-approved second-line treatment option for patients with this type of cancer.

November 5, 2014 - FDA Approves Cyramza Plus Paclitaxel for Gastric Cancer

The FDA has approved Lilly's Cyramza (ramucirumab) in combination with paclitaxel (a type of chemotherapy) as a treatment for patients with advanced or metastatic gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma whose cancer has progressed on or after prior fluoropyrimidine- or platinum-containing chemotherapy. The combination approval of of Cyramza follows its April approval as a single agent - the first for U.S. patients in this setting.

November 3, 2014 - Scott Loses 30 lbs and Brings Awareness to Curing Stomach Cancer Month

Our FitStar of the week is Scott Shirai from Boynton Beach, Florida. Scott has lost 30 pounds with the help of FitStar! He also is raising awareness about stomach cancer. November is Curing Stomach Cancer Month and Scott is helping lead the fight against it through his organization Debbie's Dream Foundation.

November 2, 2014 - Scientists Create Mini Human Stomach

A team of scientists in collaboration with researchers at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine have created a miniature version of the human stomach using stem cells in order to study an infection caused by the H. pylori bacteria that causes peptic ulcers and stomach cancer. The 3-D mini stomachs allow the scientists to study the early stages of stomach cancer and its formation, as well as studying some of the basics of diabetes and obesity. The hope is that the research will lead to the development of new drugs and other treatments.

October 29, 2014 - FOLFIRI May be Viable First-Line Regimen for Advanced Gastric, EsophagoGastric Junction Adenocarcinoma

Patients with advanced gastric and esophagogastric junction adenocarcinoma who underwent first-line treatment with fluorouracil, leucovorin and irinotecan demonstrated significantly longer time to treatment failure than those treated with epirubicin, cisplatin and capecitabine, according to results of a randomized phase 3 study.

October 28, 2014 - Helicobacter pylori vaccine

ImevaX GmbH announced today that they will be funding a clinical trial of IMX 101, which is a highly specific vaccine against Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori). Chronic infections of the stomach with H. pylori are the most common bacterial infections worldwide and lead to gastritis, stomach ulcers and potentially stomach cancer. Due to the high global infection rate and the decreasing efficacy of existing antibiotics against H. pylori plus the poor safety profile of these treatments, there exists a high medical need and a significant commercial interest in a H. pylori vaccine.

October 24, 2014 - Soy, Allium Vegetables and Mushroom Prevent Cancer

In this study, high intake of soy products including soybean, soybean curd (tofu), and soymilk are linked to nearly 70% reduced risk of gastric cancer. Allium vegetables such as onion and garlic when used in high quantity were associated with 63% reduced risk for cancer, and high intake of mushroom was correlated with 57% reduced risk for gastric cancer.

October 24, 2014 - More Focus on H Pylori and Gastric Cancer Needed

Though uncertainties remain, gastric cancer and Helicobacter pylori represent an enormous opportunity for prevention. An amazing 770,000 out of 989,000 total gastric cancer cases around the world in 2008 can be attributed to the bacterial infection, suggesting that eradication could yield drastic reductions in incidence. Estimates suggest 700,000 people will die of gastric cancer this year, making it the third-most common cause of cancer deaths around the world.

October 14, 2014- AstraZeneca Looks To EU Decision For Next Cancer Drug Boost

Olaparib blocks an enzyme involved in cell repair and is designed for patients with certain hereditary gene mutations. It also has promise in treating breast and gastric cancers, opening up a substantial market opportunity.

October 5, 2014 - Green Tea Could Help Scientists Develop New Cancer Fighting Drugs

Scientists believe green tea could be used to develop new drugs to fight cancer. Green tea is made up of a class of chemicals called catechins, the most abundant of which is EGCG (Epigallocatechin Gallate). Dr Joo Eun Chung and his colleagues have shown that the anticancer protein Herceptin can combine with EGCG to form a stable and effective complex to deliver a drug to a tumor site.

September 28, 2014 - Merck Drug Extends Immune System Fight to Stomach Cancer

Merck & Co's drug Keytruda, the first in a new wave of immune-boosting medicines to be approved for treating melanomas in the United States, also has potential in stomach cancer, new research shows. Early clinical trial results reported on Sunday mean that gastric, or stomach cancer, can be added to a growing list of tumor types where so-called immunotherapy may have an important role to play.

September 26, 2014 - Treating an infection to prevent a cancer: H. pylori and stomach cancer

Nearly 11,000 Americans will likely die from gastric cancer this year, with only 28 percent of cases surviving five years or more. About 77 percent of gastric cancer cases are linked to chronic infections of Helicobacter pylori, a helix-shaped bacteria that was identified in the early 1980s and found to be linked to gastric ulcers a few years later, as well as to gastritis, an inflammation of the stomach lining that is a precursor to stomach cancer. Screening and treatment for H pylori is generally acceptable and affordable. An inexpensive serological test can determine who may be infected, with a sensitivity and specificity that could be sufficient for population-based prevention programs.

September 8, 2014 - Prediabetic Patients May Face Higher Risk for Stomach Cancer

Having too much sugar in your blood, even if you are not diabetic, is considered unhealthy and there may be an association between having high blood sugar levels and developing a serious health condition. Past research has suggested a possible link between prediabetes and cancer. The cancers most associated with prediabetes were liver, stomach/colorectal and uterine (endometrial) cancers. Talk to a dietician about ways to improve your diet. For more information on nutrition visit:

September 1, 2014 - Increased Helicobacter Pylori is Mediated by Spermine Oxidase

Helicobacter pylori infection causes gastric cancer, the third leading cause of cancer death worldwide. More than half of the world's population is infected. Clinical trials suggest that antibiotic treatment only reduces gastric cancer risk in patients with non-atrophic gastritis (NAG), and is ineffective once preneoplastic lesions of multifocal atrophic gastritis (MAG) and intestinal metaplasia (IM) have occurred. Polyamines, generated by the rate-limiting enzyme ornithine decarboxylase (ODC), in gastric carcinogenesis have been used as an additional strategy.

August 29, 2014 - Severing Nerves May Shrink Stomach Cancers

Research from Columbia University Medical Center shows that nerves may play a critical role in stomach cancer growth and that blocking nerve signals using surgery or Botox could be an effective treatment for the disease. The study was conducted by the laboratory of Timothy C. Wang, MD, in collaboration with Duan Chen, MD, PhD, in Norway and is published in an August issue of Science Translational Medicine. Using three different mouse models of stomach cancer, Dr. Wang's team found that when they performed a procedure called a vagotomy to cut the nerves, the surgery significantly slowed tumor growth and increased survival rates.

August 26, 2014 - Botox 'Highly Effective' Treatment of Gastric Cancer

In laboratory tests, Botox - made from the toxin of botulism bacteria - proved "highly effective" at suppressing gastric cancer in mice. The promising results have led to the launch of an early clinical trial involving human patients with stomach cancer in Norway. Botox injections are less toxic than most standard cancer treatments, caused hardly any side effects, and are relatively cheap.

August 24, 2014 - Drug of Choice

One of the cheapest drugs in the world is perhaps the most single effective agent in helping populations stay alive. The drug is aspirin. Aspirin can help with cardiovascular risk, stopping cancer, and the risk of bleeding among other things. Esophageal and stomach cancer rates were cut by thirty percent. Also, the death rate reduction exceeded the reduction in tumor incidence. That means the people who did get these tumors, if they were taking aspirin, lived longer.

August 10, 2014 - Results Demonstrate 'Ongoing Need For Improvement' In Gastric Cancer Treatment

Controversy about the required radicality of surgery in the curative treatment of gastric cancer has lessened in recent years. There is not a nearly global consensus that D2 lymphadenectomy represents the optimal surgery for gastric cancer. Read more on this article written by DDFs Medical Advisory Board Member, Dr. David Ilson.

August 8, 2014 - Cancer Should Be Classified By Genetic and Molecular Type

A research network in the US proposes that cancer should be classified according to genetic and molecular features rather than by the type of tissue in which the tumor arises. Scientists say that such a system would be better for patients because it would help tailor treatment to their individual needs. Medical News Today recently reported another TCGA study that found four distinct molecular subtypes of stomach cancer.

August 6, 2014 - Daily Aspirin Cuts Bowel and Stomach Cancer Deaths

Scientists have found that taking aspirin daily can significantly reduce the risk of developing, and dying from, the major cancers of the digestive tract, such as bowel, stomach and oesophageal cancer. Rates of oesophageal and stomach cancers were cut by 30 percent and deaths from these cancers by 35-50 percent according to the researchers led by Professor Jack Cuzick, Head of QMUL's Centre for Cancer Prevention.

August 5, 2014 - DNA Work Offers Stomach Cancer Hope

Doctors from the University of Hong Kong have mapped the world's most comprehensive DNA database showing hundreds of genetic mutations in stomach cancer. The DNA mapping could help develop "targeted" drugs for the disease. Currently there is only one such targeted drug, Herceptin, available to treat stomach cancer. The university team has identified hudreds of driver genes causing the disease.

July 30, 2014 - TCGA Identifies Four Gastric Cancer Subtypes

Researchers of The Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network have found that gastric adenocarcinomas can be divided into four distinct groups: tumors that are positive for Epstein-Barr Virus; microsatellite unstable unstable tumors; genomically stable tumors; and tumors with chromosomal instability. The researchers, led by Adam Bass, MD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, obtained samples of adenocarcinoma from 295 patients who had not been treated with prior chemotherapy or radiotherapy. They conducted a variety of genomic analyses, including whole genomic sequencing on 107 tumor/germline pairs. Bass says that a key advance in this project is the development of a much more useful classification system, which will allow doctors to pursue key targets in different groups of patients.

July 25, 2014 - MGr1-Ag/37LRP Promotes Growth and Proliferation of Gastric Cancer in Vitro and in Vivo

Gastric carcinoma (GC) is an aggressive cancer due to the MGr1-Ag cells that make up the many tissues of the stomach. MGr1-Ag was originally thought to resist the many drugs used to combat this lethal cancer. Since the MGr1-Ag is very common in GC tissues and not healthy tissues, the outlook looked grim. However, recent studies suggest that tumor growth is dependent on a certain region within the MGr1-Ag and the knockdown of this certain type of cell leads to decreased GC cell growth in vivo and in vitro. These studies can potentially be used as a prognostic factor and a therapeutic target for GC.

July 23, 2014 - Debbie's Dream Foundation Continues to Be at the Forefront of Hastening Stomach Cancer Treatment Development and Assisting with Clinical Trials Enrollment

Debbie's Dream Foundation is contributing to the fight against stomach cancer on many fronts. We are very proud of our DDF Medical Advisory Board Member Adam Bass and his leadership on the TCGA Gastric Cancer Project. This project is a federally funded initiative that involves large international groups of researchers and centers that are cataloging genomic characteristics in gastric (stomach) cancer. The project, which announced its findings in Nature today, found that there are four main subtypes of stomach cancer. This revolutionary finding of gastric cancer subtypes is expected to lead to quicker improvements in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of stomach cancer.

July 17, 2014 - Local Scientists Find Out What Turns Stomach Cells Cancerous

Instead of carrying cancer-causing mutations in genes, researchers in Singapore found that stomach cancer cells have normal genes that are being abnormally activated, which causes the cells to turn cancerous. Using the latest DNA sequencing technologies developed at their institute, the tumor cells are comprehensively analyzed to identify molecular differences between cancer cells and normal tissue. Data from the World Health Organization showed that stomach cancer is a major cause of cancer death worldwide.

July 15, 2014 - Assessing the 'Fit' Older Patient for Chemotherapy

Making appropriate treatment decisions for older adults with cancer is one of the most important challenges that oncologists face in daily practice, as the therapy selected depends on an assessment of the patient's "fitness." In this article you will find specific considerations for evaluating patients who appear to be "fit" for chemotherapy treatment, and outline methods for integrating the principles of geriatric medicine to form a clear picture of an older adult's level of fitness and thus his or her individual risk of significant toxicity from cancer therapy.

July 14, 2014 - 5 Eating Habits That Can End In Stomach Cancer

Here are five unhealthy diets that can make us vulnerable to stomach cancer: irregular diet, hot and stimulating foods, 'distracted diet', rice soaked with soup, and acidic fruit on an empty stomach. People who have irregular diets suffer 1.3 times the incidence of stomach cancer than those who eat at a fixed time. Hot food increases the risk of the stomach cancer by 4.22 times. Suggestions offered by medical experts are that it would help if we get up 15 to 20 minutes earlier and focus on breakfast, rather than to eat on the go. Eating rice that has been soaked with soup increases the burden in the stomach since the rice has been swallowed whole. When we are hungry, gastric acid in the stomach will reach a high concentration, which, if combined with fruit, will precipitate in the stomach.

July 10, 2014 - Phase I Trial for BeiGene's PARP Inhibitor Begins

The first patient has been dosed in the Phase I trial of BGB-290 for cancer treatment. BGB-290 is an inhibitor of PARP, an enzyme that is involved in multiple cell processes. Small molecules of BGB-290 have shown to fight tumors by picking up and trapping PARP proteins on damaged DNA. Anti-tumor effects have been exhibited and could become a treatment option for common cancers.

July 4, 2014 - Researchers Discover Novel Protein Complex with Potential to Combat Gastric Cancer Caused By Bacterial Infection

Scientists from the Cancer Science Institute of Singapore (CSI Singapore) discovered that a protein named IL23A is part of our stomach's defense against bacterial infection which leads to gastric cancer. This finding could potentially be used to combat the deadly disease. In Singapore, stomach cancer was the fourth leading cause of cancer death among men and fifth among women from 2008 to 2012. This highlights the urgent need to understand the causes of this deadly disease.

July 2, 2014 - Apatinib Prolongs Survival in Advanced Gastric Cancer

Apatinib significantly improved overall survival according to the results of a phase III study presented at the 2014 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago. Results of the study revealed an almost 2-month overall survival advantage for patients assigned to treatment with apatinib.Treatment with apatinib was generally well tolerated and the main side effects consisted of low white blood cell counts, low platelet counts and toxicity to the skin know as hand-foot syndrome.

June 28, 2014 - Dr. Bendell Discusses a Phase III Study of Apatinib in Gastric Cancer

Johanna Bendell, MD, director of GI Cancer Research Program discusses a randomized phase III placebo-controlled trial that explored apatinib as a treatment for patients with advanced gastric cancer. During the trial, the drug was studied in Chinese patients as second-line therapy for patients with metastatic gastric cancer. The study found that there was a statistically significant improvement in overall survival in the apatinib arm versus the placebo arm, Bendell says.

June 27, 2014 - Ramucirumab Benefit for US Patients With Gastric Cancer Mirrors Global Results

Patients in the United States and other Western nations experienced similar survival gains and adverse events as did their counterparts in two other regions of the world from the use of ramucirumab (Cyramza) in advanced gastric cancer. Eli Lilly and Company, which developed the drug, supported this geographic analysis of clinical trial results.

June 25, 2014 - Advaxis Gets Allowance from USPTO for Two Cancer Immunotherapy Patent Applications

ADXS-cHER2 is being developed to target the Her2 receptor, which is overexpressed in certain solid-tumor cancers, including bone cancer (osteosarcoma), breast cancer, esophageal and gastric cancer. Advaxis, a United States based clinical-stage biotechnology firm is planning to start a Phase I trial with ADXS-cHER2 in pediatric osteosarcoma, for which it received orphan drug designation, and is pursuing early development clinical collaborations for breast, esophageal and gastric cancers.

June 25, 2014 - Nigeria: Heartburn Can Lead to Ulcers, Stomach Cancer

Gastro-Esophageal Reflux Disease (GERD), also referred to as heart burn, has been warned as a serious medical condition according to Nigerian medical experts. Apart from discomfort and pain associated with the condition, it can eventually lead to ulcers, stomach cancer and cancer of the oesophagus.

June 25, 2014 - Diet Poses Big Cancer Risk

Your diet says a lot about your future.  Among the top 10 cancers that threaten Chinese people's health, five are cancers of the digestive system, including esophageal cancer, gastric cancer and colorectal cancer.  Experts remind citizens to change their unhealthy dietary patterns and eat more fruits and vegetables, the Beijing Morning Post reported.  What are you eating?

June 25, 2014 - Diet Poses Big Cancer Risk

Your diet says a lot about your future. Among the top 10 cancers that threaten Chinese people's health, five are cancers of the digestive system, including esophageal cancer, gastric cancer and colorectal cancer. Experts remind citizens to change their unhealthy dietary patterns and eat more fruits and vegetables, the Beijing Morning Post reported. What are you eating?

June 24, 2014 - Stomach Cancer Treatment Advances at Memorial Sloan Kettering

Memorial Sloan Kettering is one of the leading cancer centers in the United States for diagnosing and treating patients with stomach cancer. Their effectiveness in treating this disease has been enhanced by the ability to identify subtle but important differences among various types of stomach cancer and to accurately stage the condition so that they can determine the best treatment approach. Memorial Sloan Kettering's multidisciplinary team of more than 20 doctors includes world-class specialists in gastroenterology, surgical oncology, medical oncology, interventional radiology, and radiation oncology who work closely together to diagnose and treat this illness.

June 23, 2014 - H.Pylori is the deadliest thing you've never heard of - here's why you should be screened for it

Helicobacter Pylori (H.Pylori) is a common bacterial infection of the lining of the stomach. H.Pylori often causes no symptoms but is associated with a number of significant conditions such as stomach cancer. It is estimated that 2500 new cases of stomach cancer occurring within the UK each year are linked to the presence of H.Pylori infection. Screening for H.Pylori, perhaps as part of a full health check or health assessment, can reduce the risk of developing stomach cancer by one-third. Ask your doctor at your next visit!

June 20, 2014 - Cancer Patients May 'Feel Drunk' From Docetaxel, Says FDA

The commonly used intravenous chemotherapy docetaxel "may cause patients to experience intoxication or feel drunk during and after treatment," warns the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA is revising the labels of all docetaxel products to warn about the risk for intoxication.Docetaxel is used in the treatment of cancers of the breast, prostate, stomach, head and neck, and lung.