Volume 1.24 | Oct 5

Pancreatic Cell News 1.24, October 5, 2010.


New Biomarkers Discovered for Pancreatic Cancer and Mesothelioma  ShareThis
Using a novel aptamer-based proteomics array technology, researchers and collaborators have identified biomarkers and protein signatures that are hallmarks of cancer at an early stage for two of the most aggressive and deadly forms of cancer — pancreatic and mesothelioma. [Press release from ScienceDaily discussing data presented at the Fourth AACR International Conference on Molecular Diagnostics in Cancer Therapeutic Development]



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Phase 1b/2 Trial Targets Stroma Barrier in Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer
A stromal shell, built largely of cancer-associated fibroblasts and inflammatory cells, shields most pancreas tumors from chemotherapy. The current standard of chemotherapeutic care, gemcitabine, extends survival by only a few months. Taking aim at the cancer’s armor, Brian Wolpin, MD, MPH just enrolled the first patient in a two-phase clinical trial to test the safety and overall survival resulting from pairing gemcitabine with a targeted inhibitor of the stroma-sustaining molecular signal from the cancer. [Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center Press Release]

Yale Researchers Find Protein is a Key Tool in Chromosomal Repair Kit
Scientists have discovered how one protein plays a key role in repairing damage to chromosomes that can cause different types of cancer. [Press release from Yale University discussing online prepublication in the Nature Structural & Molecular Biology]

Experts Design Tiny Beads to Monitor Blood Sugar
Researchers in Japan have designed tiny beads that detected blood sugar levels when implanted in the ears of mice and they hope to eventually use this to replace more invasive techniques in people with diabetes. [Press release from Reuters discussing online prepublication in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences]

Sanford-Burnham Researchers Make Gains Against Diabetes
Dr. Fred Levine has developed a new model to study the process by which beta-cells arise from precursor cells. [Medical News Today Press Release]

T Cell Discovery Shows Promise for Type 1 Diabetes Treatment: UBC-CFRI Study
A research team has identified the role of a type of T cell in type 1 diabetes that may lead to new treatment options for young patients. [Press release from the University of British Columbia discussing online prepublication in the Journal of Immunology]


CURRENT PUBLICATIONS (Ranked by Impact Factor of the Journal)


Activation of the NLRP3 Inflammasome by Islet Amyloid Polypeptide Provides a Mechanism for Enhanced IL-1beta in Type 2 Diabetes
Here researchers show that oligomers of islet amyloid polypeptide, a protein that forms amyloid deposits in the pancreas during type 2 diabetes, triggered the NLRP3 inflammasome and generated mature IL-1beta. [Nat Immunol]

dDOR Is an EcR Coactivator that Forms a Feed-Forward Loop Connecting Insulin and Ecdysone Signaling
Mammalian DOR was discovered as a gene whose expression is misregulated in muscle of Zucker diabetic rats. Because no DOR loss-of-function mammalian models are available, researchers analyze here the in vivo function of DOR by studying flies mutant for Drosophila DOR (dDOR). [Curr Biol]

Injectable Hydrogel Microbeads for Fluorescence-Based In Vivo Continuous Glucose Monitoring
This paper illustrates the highly-sensitive, biostable, long-lasting, and injectable fluorescent microbeads for in vivo continuous glucose monitoring. Researchers synthesized a fluorescent monomer composed of glucose-recognition sites, a fluorogenic site, spacers, and polymerization sites. [Proc Natl Acad Sci USA]

Immobilization of the Soluble Domain of Human Complement Receptor 1 on Agarose-Encapsulated Islets for the Prevention of Complement Activation
The transplantation of islets of Langerhans has been successfully applied to the treatment of insulin-dependent diabetes. However, a shortage of human donors is the hardest obstacle to overcome. Researchers aimed to develop a bioartificial pancreas that can realize xeno-islet transplantation. [ Biomaterials]

Expression Analysis of Loci Associated with Type 2 Diabetes in Human Tissues
The goal of this study was to evaluate the effect of age, height, weight and risk alleles on expression of candidate genes in diabetes-associated regions in three relevant human tissues. [Diabetologia]

Cutting Edge: Increased IL-17-Secreting T Cells in Children with New-Onset Type 1 Diabetes
Recently, distinct subsets of CD4(+)FOXP3(+) T cells with differing functions were identified. Notably, CD45RA(-)CD25(int)FOXP3(low) T cells lack suppressive function and secrete the proinflammatory cytokine IL-17. Therefore, researchers evaluated whether the relative fractions of CD4(+)FOXP3(+) subsets are altered in new-onset type 1 diabetes subjects. [J Immunol]

Adjuvant Immunotherapy Increases Beta Cell Regenerative Factor Regeneration Gene 2 in the Pancreas of Diabetic Mice
In this study, researchers investigated factors involved in the regeneration of beta cells in the pancreas of NOD mice during diabetes development and after treatment with adjuvants. [J Immunol]


Cooperation of Breast Cancer Proteins PALB2 and Piccolo BRCA2 in Stimulating Homologous Recombination
Inherited mutations in human PALB2 are associated with a predisposition to breast and pancreatic cancers. The studies provide the first biochemical insights into PALB2’s function with piccolo BRCA2 as a mediator of homologous recombination in DNA double-strand break repair. [Nat Struct Mol Biol]

Enhancement of RAD51 Recombinase Activity by the Tumor Suppressor PALB2
The results demonstrate the multifaceted role of PALB2 in chromosome damage repair. Because PALB2 mutations can cause cancer or Fanconi anemia, the findings shed light on the mechanism of tumor suppression in humans. [Nat Struct Mol Biol]

Identification of c-FLIP(L) and c-FLIP(S) as Critical Regulators of Death Receptor-Induced Apoptosis in Pancreatic Cancer Cells
Here, the role of c-FLIP in the regulation of death receptor-mediated apoptosis in pancreatic cancer was investigated. [Gut]

Targeting of XIAP Combined with Systemic Mesenchymal Stem Cell-Mediated Delivery of sTRAIL Inhibits Metastatic Growth of Pancreatic Carcinoma Cells
Disseminating tumors are one of the gravest medical problems. Here, researchers combine the tumor-specific apoptosis-inducing activity of TNF-related apoptosis-inducing ligand (TRAIL) with the ability of mesenchymal stem cells to infiltrate both tumor and lymphatic tissues to target primary tumors as well as disseminated cancer cells in a human pancreatic cancer mouse model. [Stem Cells]

PDX-1: Demonstration of Oncogenic Properties in Pancreatic Cancer
PDX-1 induced increased cell proliferation, invasion, and colony formation in vitro, and resulted in markedly increased HEK 293 and MIA PaCa2 tumor formation in SCID mice. These data suggest that PDX-1 is a potential oncogene that regulates tumorigenesis. [Cancer]

PAX8 Expression Reliably Distinguishes Pancreatic Well-Differentiated Neuroendocrine Tumors from Ileal and Pulmonary Well-Differentiated Neuroendocrine Tumors and Pancreatic Acinar Cell Carcinoma
The purpose of this study was to analyze PAX8 immunohistochemical expression in gastroenteropancreatic and pulmonary well-differentiated neuroendocrine tumors to determine whether PAX8 can reliably distinguish pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors from neuroendocrine tumors of other anatomic sites and other pancreatic non-ductal neoplasms. [Mod Pathol]

Estimating Prognosis and Palliation Based on Tumour Marker CA 19-9 and Quality of Life Indicators in Patients with Advanced Pancreatic Cancer Receiving Chemotherapy
The purpose of this study was to investigate the prognostic value of quality of life relative to tumour marker carbohydrate antigen (CA) 19-9, and the role of CA 19-9 in estimating palliation in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer receiving chemotherapy. [Br J Cancer]

Glycogene Expression Alterations Associated with Pancreatic Cancer Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Complementary Model Systems
Alterations to glycogenes are a major component of cancer epithelial-mesenchymal transition and are characterized by changes to matrix components, the sulfation of glycosaminoglycans, mannose receptors, O-glycosylation, and specific sialylated structures. These results provide leads for targeting aggressive and drug resistant forms of pancreatic cancer cells. [PLoS ONE]


UNC Scientists Receive Grant to Develop Nanotechnology for Pancreatic Cancer Diagnosis and Treatment
A team of UNC scientists has received a five-year $2,308,800 grant from the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Nanotechnology Platform Partnerships to address the critical need for early diagnosis of and more effective treatments for pancreatic cancer. [University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine Press Release]

$11.5 Million Grant Arms UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center Fight Against Pancreatic Cancer
The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Comprehensive Cancer Center, in collaboration with the University of Minnesota, has won an $11.5 million grant from the National Cancer Institute to explore groundbreaking pancreatic cancer research, prevention and treatment. [The University of Alabama Press Release]

Neogenix Oncology to Commence Phase I Trial for Therapeutic Antibody for Pancreatic and Colorectal Cancer
Neogenix Oncology, Inc. announced that researchers at Duke University Medical Center have received approval to move forward with a Phase I trial of the company’s lead therapeutic antibody, NPC-1C, in patients with advanced stage pancreatic or colorectal cancer. [Business Wire]

Once-Daily Lixisenatide in Combination with Basal Insulin Demonstrates Significant Improvement in Glucose Control
Sanofi-aventis announced the top-line results of the GETGOAL-L-ASIA study assessing the efficacy and safety of lixisenatide, a once-daily GLP-1 receptor agonist, in combination with basal insulin. [Sanofi-aventis Press Release]


FDA Significantly Restricts Access to the Diabetes Drug Avandia
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced that it will significantly restrict the use of the diabetes drug Avandia (rosiglitazone) to patients with Type 2 diabetes who cannot control their diabetes on other medications. [Food and Drug Administration, United States]

NIH Transformative Research Project Awards Hasten Innovation
The National Institutes of Health will award up to $64 million over five years to encourage exploration of exceptionally innovative and original research ideas that have the potential for extraordinary impact. [National Institutes of Health, United States]

NCBI Launches the Database of Genomic Structural Variations
The National Institutes of Health announces the launch of a new resource, called the Database of Genomic Structural Variation, or dbVar, to help scientists understand how differences in DNA contribute to human health and disease. [National Institutes of Health, United States]

NIH Grants Will Advance Studies of the Form and Function of Proteins
The National Institutes of Health has awarded 23 grants for structural biology research totaling up to $290 million over five years. The projects will focus on determining the shapes and functions of proteins important in biology and medicine. [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Tumor Microenvironment Network (TMEN) (U54) (RFA-CA-10-021) [Department of Health and Human Services, United States]

Resource Related Research Projects for Development of Animal Models and Related Materials (R24) (PAR-10-289) [National Center for Research Resources, United States]

Animal and Biological Material Resource Centers (P40) (PAR-11-001) [National Center for Research Resources, United States]

NHLBI Translational Research Implementation Program (TRIP) – Limited Competition – (P50) (RFA-HL-12-003) [National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, United States]

Notice of Pre-Application Meeting and Correction for Request for Applications (RFA-RM-10-011, RFA-RM-10-012, and RFA-RM-10-013) for the Knockout Mouse Phenotyping (U54), Project Database (U54), and Production and Cryopreservation (U42) (NOT-RM-10-015) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives, Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-24548) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2010-24680) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2010-24549) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-24550) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Center for Scientific Review; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2010-24556) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

National Human Genome Research Institute; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-24555) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-24408) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

National Cancer Institute; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-24413) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

National Cancer Institute; Notice of Closed Meetings (FR Doc. 2010-24414) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

Office of the Director, National Institutes of Health; Notice of Meeting (FR Doc. 2010-24405) [National Institutes of Health, United States]

EVENTS (Listed by Date)

35th European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress
October 8-12, 2010
Milan, Italy

Fraunhofer Life Science Symposium Leipzig 2010
October 29-30, 2010
Leipzig, Germany

2010 American Pancreatic Association (APA) Annual Meeting
November 3-6, 2010
Chicago, United States

Select Biosciences 2nd International Forum on Stem Cells (2010 IFSC)
November 12-13, 2010
Tianjin, China

Australasian Pancreatic Club Annual Meeting
November 15-16, 2010
Melbourne, Australia

Type 2 Diabetes, Insulin Resistance and Metabolic Dysfunction
January 12-17, 2011
Dillon, United States

Keystone Symposia: Obesity
January 12-17, 2011
Keystone, Colorado

2011 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium
January 20-22, 2011
San Francisco, United States

Epithelial Plasticity and Epithelial to Mesenchymal Transition
January 21-26, 2011
Vancouver, Canada

Select Biosciences 5th Annual Stem Cells World Congress
January 24-25, 2011
San Diego, United States

Phacilitate 7th Annual Cell & Gene Therapy Forum 2011
January 24-26, 2011
Washington, DC, United States

Joint Conference of the International Association of Pancreatology and the Indian Pancreas Club
February 10-13, 2011
Maradu, India

American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) 102nd Annual Meeting 2011
April 2-6, 2011
Orlando, United States

Visit our events page  to stay up to date with the latest events in the cell, gene and immunotherapy community.



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