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Year in Review: Cancer Research Insights from 2017

From gene therapy for childhood cancer to a potential way to see the effects of chemo minutes after it's given for breast cancer, countless new insights and advances are supported by funding from the American Cancer Society


childhood cancer patient receiving chemo

CAR T-Cell Gene Therapy Boosts Childhood Cancer Treatment

CAR-T sounds like a robot or video game. But it's a new kind of treatment that's breaking new ground for certain types of childhood leukemia and potentially for neuroblastoma. This first article in a 3-part series gives the basics about immunotherapy and the new treatment that's got all cancer researchers excited— gene therapy.  Read more.

Animated Telomeres on Green Background

One Day Telomere-Tied Treatments May Zap Cancers

A shortened telomere is a natural signal for a cell to stop reproducing itself. Cancer cells can trick telomeres so that they keep growing, even when it's time for them to retire. A protein called TZAP may return a telomere to normalcy. Read more.

from left: Dr. Otis W. Brawley, American Cancer Society chief medical officer; Dr. Jedd Wolchok; Dr. Sung Poblete, SU2C president/CEO; Dr. Jeffrey Engelman; and Dr. William Chambers, SU2C-ACS Joint Scientific Advisory Committee.

Lung Cancer Dream Team Wrestles KRAS

The KRAS gene is second in line along a path that tells a cell to grow.  A mutated KRAS gene is like the leader of a mutiny.  It takes over the number one spot on the pathway and tells the cell to keep growing. The Lung Cancer Dream Team is working to stop KRAS from limiting treatments for people with lung cancer.  Read more.

close up of a woman's feet on bathroom scales

Healthy Choices Each Day May Help Keep Cancer Away

About 42% of cancer diagnoses and nearly half of cancer deaths are related to modifiable risk factors. Excess weight is just one of them. It alone, increases the risk of 4 types of cancer. They're uterine cancer, liver cancer,  breast cancer, and colorectal cancer.  To learn about the other risks and the cancers they're associated with, read more.

nurse administers chemo to woman

Black Women, Breast Cancer, and Inadequate Health Insurance

Differences in health insurance are a main reason why Black women are more likely to die from breast cancer than white women, according to a new study. To learn more about the study and how to protect yourself from breast cancer regardless of your insurance, read more. 

three generations of Darren Roblyer’s optical devices for using light to take pictures of what’s happening inside a tumor. His field of work is called optical imaging.

A Light Device May Improve Chemotherapy for Women with Breast Cancer

In the future, a woman getting chemotherapy or breast cancer may find out how well the drugs are working at her very first infusion. That's the potential of the wearable optical device Darren Roblyer, PhD, and his research team are developing. Read more.

grandfather serves carved turkey to his family at Christmas dinner table

Your Relatives May Affect How Soon You Need a Colonoscopy

People think of age 50 as the year you should start getting a colonoscopy. But that's the age for people with average risk. If you have a first-degree relative — that's a parent, sibling, or child — affected by colon cancer, you may need to start getting screened before then. A recent study from American Cancer Society researchers found that the death rate for colorectal cancer among adults ages 20 to 54 has been increasing since the mid-200s. 

senior woman and her son leaving hospital with help of nurse and doctor

Life After Cancer Treatment

Most people are excited to have their cancer treatment come to an end. But, studies show everyone doesn't re-enter their "normal" life with same amount of preparedness.