- News Releases
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Researchers at Mayo Clinic have demonstrated in a mouse model that their recently developed synthetic peptide carrier is a potential delivery vehicle for brain cancer chemotherapy drugs and other neurological medications. The findings appear in PLOS ONE. “Not only have we shown that we can transport eight different molecules, we think this method will be less disruptive or invasive because it mimics a normal physiological process,” says Mayo Clinic neuroscientist Gobinda Sarkar, Ph.D., the corresponding author of the study. The researchers are able to transport the drugs without modifying any of the molecules involved. They say this development will aid in evaluation of potential new drugs for brain cancer. The blood-brain barrier is meant to protect the brain from numerous undesirable chemicals circulating in the body, but it also obstructs access for treatment of brain tumors and other conditions. Too often the only recourse is invasive, which often limits a drug’s effectiveness or causes irreversible damage to an already damaged brain. Nearly all of the drugs that could potentially help are too large to normally pass through the barrier. Additionally, other methods may damage the vascular system.
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Tumor sequencing of several different lung cancers and their surrounding tissue complicates the prevailing theory of linear lung cancer progression and offers new insights for management of this deadly cancer, according to a new Mayo Clinic study. Sequencing results provide, for the first time, strong molecular evidence of progression from phenotypically indolent components to more aggressive disease and also show that both components can progress independently, even if they arise from the same precursor, according to the study. The paper appears online in Cancer Research. “This study sheds light on potential changes in our understanding of both the molecular pathogenesis and best treatment of lung adenocarcinoma,” says George Vasmatzis, Ph.D., senior author of the study and co-director of the Biomarker Discovery Program in the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine. “The heterogeneity of lung cancer tells us repeatedly that the natural history of tumors and the roads to progression vary among cases, and multiple models are possible in certain cancers.” Lung cancer accounts for nearly 160,000 deaths every year in the United States, more than the next three most-common cancers combined, according to the American Lung Association. Treatment of early-stage cancers may be tailored according to the type of genomic alterations observed, says Dr. Vasmatzis. In some cases, this could mean less-aggressive treatment and periods of close observation, while other situations may call for more immediate interventions, such as surgery or radiation. “As suggested by clinical studies demonstrating improved disease-free and overall survival for treatment of lesions containing components of adenocarcinoma in situ [noninvasive lung cancer], it may be that this represents a distinct clinical entity that can be treated less aggressively by either sub-lobar resection or even periods of watchful waiting with close imaging follow-up prior to any treatment,” says Dr. Vasmatzis.
ROCHESTER, Minn. — Researchers from Mayo Clinic and the University of Pennsylvania announce the launch of the Seizure Detection Challenge, an international competition inviting the best minds in “machine learning” to improve devices to track and treat epilepsy. Researchers from Penn and Mayo Clinic have designed the challenge, which is hosted by Kaggle.com, an online community where data scientists come together to solve complex problems. The unique data sets gathered during the challenge will be made freely available to researchers worldwide by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), University of Pennsylvania and Mayo Clinic at the International Epilepsy Electrophysiology Portal to advance epilepsy research and treatment.