Mayo Clinic News Network

News Resources

cancer Archive

Minnesota Partnership Launches Six Research Projects

Posted on March 20th, 2014 by Bob Nellis

University of Minnesota Research Partnership Logo

Laser-guided Malaria Detectors
Smart Socks that Predict Heart Attacks
Mouse Avatars to Study Ovarian Cancer

These are just three of the joint projects now underway involving collaborative research teams from Mayo Clinic and the University of Minnesota. Over $4 million in research awards from the Minnesota Partnership for Biotechnology and Medical Genomics will make those investigative projects possible. The research grants are intended to jump start innovative ideas and generate scientific data in order to secure more long-term funding. These "seed" grants are for two years and involve ideas that have a strong likelihood of turning into marketable products or processes.

The other three projects include development of a genomic research tool to help scientists engineer DNA, a study looking for links between stress and obesity, and an exploration of the causes of and possible therapies for irritable bowel syndrome involving microbiotics. The funding comes from the state of Minnesota.

Read entire news release.

Advanced Home Stool Test Finds Colorectal Cancer’s DNA

Posted on March 19th, 2014 by Dennis Douda

Mayo Clinic research results presented in NEJM could change colorectal screening practice

A clinical trial of Cologuard shows unprecedented results for finding colorectal cancer with a noninvasive test. “Cologuard detection rates of early stage cancer and high-risk precancerous polyps validated in this large study were outstanding and have not been achieved by other noninvasive approaches,” says the study’s author David Ahlquist M.D., a Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist and co-inventor of the Cologuard test.

Colorectal cancer has become the second leading cause of cancer death in the United States, but it is highly treatable if found early. Cologuard uses a self-contained collection kit that allows patients to send stool samples to a high-tech lab for screening.

Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Ahlquist, animation and b-roll of the Cologuard test kit are available in the downloads.
Read the rest of this entry »

Minority disparities evident in prostate cancer survival rate, Mayo Clinic study shows

Posted on March 19th, 2014 by Jim McVeigh

PHOENIX — March 19, 2014 — A Mayo Clinic study reviewed data on more than 290,000 men with prostate cancer from the past 20 years and found that African-American men are at increased risk for poorer survival rate following prostate cancer treatment compared to other minority groups. The study was recently published in Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Researchers say that it has long been known that the survival rates of African-American men are less than Caucasian men but there was less information about other minorities such as Hispanics and Asians. Using data from the National Cancer Institute, the researchers used consistent clinical parameters among the groups and found that the survival rates for Hispanics and Asians were about the same as Caucasian.

“Theoretically, if all clinical and demographic variables are the same and people have similar access to treatment, they should have the equal survival rates,” says Mark D. Tyson, II, M.D, a urologist at Mayo Clinic in Arizona. “We found that is not the case.”

Dr. Tyson said the research team believes that the disparity can be attributed to post treatment factors. He said the next phase of the research will examine what post treatment factors contribute to the survival rate. He said that it is important for both physicians and patients to know that the disparity exists and there could be a variety of reasons why.

“What we do know is that with all other things being equal there is still this disparity… and the study really points to that post treatment period,” Dr. Tyson says. “The message that patients and clinicians can take away from this study is that patients need to be followed closely particularly if they are of African-American descent.”


About Mayo Clinic
Recognizing 150 years of serving humanity in 2014, Mayo Clinic is a nonprofit worldwide leader in medical care, research and education for people from all walks of life. For more information, visit, and

MEDIA CONTACT:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Jim McVeigh, Mayo Clinic Public Affairs, 480-301-4222, 

Large Waist Linked to Poor Health, Even Among Those in Healthy Body Mass Index Ranges

Posted on March 13th, 2014 by Nick Hanson


Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Cerhan are available in the downloads.

ROCHESTER, Minn. — March 12, 2014 — Having a big belly has consequences beyond trouble squeezing into your pants. It’s detrimental to your health, even if you have a healthy body mass index (BMI), a new international collaborative study led by a Mayo Clinic researcher found. Men and women with large waist circumferences were more likely to die younger, and were more likely to die from illnesses such as heart disease, respiratory problems, and cancer after accounting for body mass index, smoking, alcohol use and physical activity. The study is published in the March edition of Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Man with obese stomach being measured.

The researchers pooled data from 11 different cohort studies, including more than 600,000 people from around the world. They found that men with waists 43 inches or greater in circumference had a 50 percent higher mortality risk than men with waists less than 35 inches, and this translated to about a three-year lower life expectancy after age 40. Women with a waist circumference of 37 inches or greater had about an 80 percent higher mortality risk than women with a waist circumference of 27 inches or less, and this translated to about a five-year lower life expectancy after age 40.


Read the rest of this entry »

Mayo Clinic Expands Its Reach in 2013

Posted on March 7th, 2014 by Susana Shephard

FOHC Banner

Mayo Clinic Care Network 3-06-14A Milestone for the Future of Health Care in Arizona 

The Far East met the Southwest as Mayo Clinic in Arizona employees, benefactors, community leaders, and Hitachi leadership joined together in a traditional Japanese ceremony to welcome the arrival of the first wave of proton beam equipment.

Mayo Clinic Expands Its Reach in 2013

John Noseworthy, M.D., CEO and president at Mayo Clinic, reports that Mayo Clinic reached a record 63 million people in 2013.

Integrated Care: Improving Patient Outcomes and Lowering Costs

Robert Nesse, M.D., vice-president at Mayo Clinic, explains how Mayo Clinic is a leader in the effort to change the health care system and improve the value of the care we deliver to patients.



Cancer Prevention Chat, Thursday Feb. 27th, 1 to 2 p.m. EST

Posted on February 25th, 2014 by Dennis Douda

sick woman patient in hospital bedThe number of new cancer cases can be reduced, and many cancer deaths can be prevented, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Join @Newshour (PBS NewsHour)   
with @mayoclinic and @AACR (American Association for Cancer Research)
to talk 
about cancer prevention.


Feb. 27, from 1 to 2 p.m. EST 


Topics will include:
Risks for developing cancer
Roles of environment, lifestyle & play in cancer prevention
How genes impact our risk of developing cancer
Screening guidelines
The latest research in cancer prevention

Drs. Axel Grothey, M.D.; Paul Limburg, M.D.Sandhya Pruthi, M.D.; and Stephanie Hines, M.D.; along with psychologist Matthew Clark, PhD.; and Sheryl Ness, R.N., editor of the Mayo Clinic’s Living with Cancer blog, will take questions on cancer risks and prevention.

If you’ve never participated in a Twitter chat, be sure to watch this how-to video before jumping in. We recommend you use a website such as or to more easily follow the flow of the conversation. Read the rest of this entry »

Mayo Clinic Identifies a Key Cellular Pathway in Prostate Cancer

Posted on February 10th, 2014 by Bob Nellis

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Mayo Clinic researchers have shed light on a new mechanism by which prostate cancer develops in men. Central to development of nearly all prostate cancer cases are malfunctions in the androgen receptor — the cellular component that binds to male hormones. The research team has shown that SPOP, a protein that is most frequently mutated in human prostate cancers, is a key regulator of androgen receptor activity that prevents uncontrolled growth of cells in the prostate and thus helps prevent cancer. The findings appear in the journal Cell Reports.

Prostate cancer word cloud“By uncovering this new and important pathway of androgen receptor destruction, we may one day be able to develop more effective treatments for a substantial proportion of prostate cancer patients who have developed resistance to standard antiandrogen therapy,” says Haojie Huang, Ph.D., Mayo Clinic biochemist and senior author of the paper.

SPOP mutations have been detected in approximately 15 percent of prostate cancer cases. In addition, it has been shown that in about 35 percent of prostate cancers, the SPOP protein is expressed at abnormally low levels. Despite its prevalence in prostate cancer, it was not known whether or how SPOP defects contributed to tumor development. What the research team discovered is that SPOP is an enzyme that selectively destroys androgen receptor protein. Failure to do so due to alterations in SPOP results in overabundance of androgen receptor, a master regulator of prostate cancer cell growth.


The Mayo Clinic research team made four major discoveries:

  • The antiandrogen receptor is a bona fide degradation substrate of SPOP.
  • Androgen receptor splicing variants are resistant to SPOP-mediated degradation.
  • Prostate cancer-associated SPOP mutants cannot bind to and promote androgen receptor degradation.
  • Androgens antagonize, but antiandrogens promote SPOP-mediated degradation of androgen receptor.

Read the rest of this entry »

Expert Comments on Surgeon General Report About Smoking

Posted on January 17th, 2014 by Kelley Luckstein

Person smoking and puffing cigarette smokeTobacco use remains the leading preventable cause of death in the United States and leads to a host of cancers and illnesses. A new report by the Surgeon General released today, The Health Consequences of Smoking, highlights a half a century of progress in tobacco control and prevention since the first report in 1964. The report also includes new findings on the health effects of smoking and a call to action on how to end the continuing tobacco use epidemic.

Journalists: Sound bites with Dr. Hurt are available in the downloads.

“We lose over 480,000 Americans every single year to tobacco-related diseases,” says Richard Hurt, M.D., director of Mayo Clinic’s Nicotine Dependence Center. “Cigarette smoke affects every organ system in the body. We’ve known for a long time that cigarette smokers have a larger number of polyps of the colon, which are the precursor to colon cancer. So it’s not a big surprise that now the committee is concluding that cigarette smoking is associated with colon cancer.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Liver Tumor Suppressor: Mayo Clinic Radio Health Minute

Posted on December 24th, 2013 by Admin

When cancer spreads or metastasizes, it often finds a home in the liver. In this Mayo Clinic Radio Health Minute, Dr. Ningling Kang outlines a study which could close the door to those tumors developing.

To listen, click the link below.

Liver Tumor Suppressor

Rectal Cancer: Mayo Clinic Radio Health Minute

Posted on December 16th, 2013 by Admin

In this Mayo Clinic Radio Health Minute, Dr. Richard Devine describes rectal cancer.

To listen, click the link below.

Rectal Cancer