Silver Bullet Points Is Ready To Battle On

Written April 23rd, 2014 by MaliBuckeye

Like the rest of Ohio, we’ve got Stanley Cup fever here… we’re on a series of shots and medications, but to be honest, we hope it sticks around for a while.  So, in preparation for tonight’s game, here’s a little something to help you get ready to #BeatPittsburgh.

Gametime

Gameday

Buckeye 411

  • The League- Pretty good week for Buckeyes in the NFL, as Cam Heyward’s 5th year option was picked up by the Steelers.  This comes one day after Terrelle Pryor was traded from the outhouse to the penthouse the Raiders to the Super Bowl Champion Seahawks. Rumor across the league were that the 49ers and ‘Hawks were both pursuing Pryor diligently, with Pete Carroll finally winning the day. Good luck in the Emerald City, Terrelle… be sure to pay for your doughnuts, m’kay?
  • Next Men Up- NFL news on Tuesday also included Draft Day invitations… and not to the latest Costner flick. Bradley Roby and Ryan Shazier will both be in New York City; here’s hoping that neither win the Brady Quinn Sitting Around By Yourself For A Really Long Time Award.
  • Night Moves- Ohio State added a fourth night game and a third one on the 2014 home slate on Tuesday, when the BTN announced that the intra-state tilt against Ohio’s BCS Team would be under the lights in the ‘Shoe.  There’s still the possibility that the number could grow- the game in East Lansing might just be pushed into prime time if both the Spartans and Buckeyes have the seasons most are projecting.
  • Flippity Flop- Over the weekend, Ohio State “lost” one of their 2015 recruits, as Ben Edwards followed up his “soft verbal” comments to North Carolina by giving his verbal to the Auburn Tigers. As you can imagine, this unleashed the highest in philosophical and intellectual debate among some Ohio State fans… many of whom are way too emotionally invested in the lives of 16-17 year old boys to be healthy.  One question, though… Would you as a fan rather that the staff pursue in-state kids that are sure to be 100% Buckeye but may not be the caliber of other recruits, or would you rather that they continue to pursue out of state players who may not end up in Columbus but could make a bigger impact? I look forward to your answer in the comments; be sure to show your work.
  • Next Man Out? As if the Edwards news wasn’t discouraging enough, Tuesday’s Canton Repository had the following blurb about one of the other OSU verbals in the 2015 class:

There was a relatively serious altercation involving McKinley quarterback Eric Glover-Williams and another McKinley player during the school day last week at the high school. New McKinley football coach Thom McDaniels declined to comment on the situation, other than to confirm there was an altercation between Glover-Williams and a player who is a senior.

There had been speculation that Glover-Williams had a previous incident in the fall as well, so it’s possible that this could be the issue that costs him his shot at an OSU opportunity.  Eleven Warriors has video of the end of the altercation in question, even though it’s in “crappy cell phone quality” it does serve as an interesting Rorschach test for folks to judge what might be the consequences/outcomes for EGW, both from the school and from Ohio State.  Stay tuned…

Weekend Wonderings

Written April 19th, 2014 by Ken

th_chimpWelcome to this week’s edition of Weekend Wonderings. I hope that you have a nice, enjoyable Easter weekend and get ample “family” time. So, if you’re reading this on Sunday, I appreciate it, but get back to your family. You can catch this later Sunday or Monday.. Oh, and if you’re visiting, safe travels to you. Regardless, grab whatever beverage that you need and let’s proceed.

The James/Wexner

Study Identifies a Likely Key Driver of Colorectal Cancer Development and Progression

  • New targets are needed for agents that will more effectively treat colorectal cancer.
  • This study identifies a molecule that is probably a key driver of colorectal cancer.
  • The findings strongly suggest that this molecule could be an important therapeutic target and a valuable biomarker of colorectal cancer tumor progression.

A new study identifies a molecule that is a probable driving force in colorectal cancer and suggests that the molecule could be an important target for colorectal cancer treatment and a valuable biomarker of tumor progression.

“We found that miR-135b is up-regulated in both sporadic and inflammatory bowel disease-associated colorectal cancer, and that its up-regulation is associated with tumor stage and poor clinical outcome,” says principal investigator Carlo M. Croce, MD, chair of molecular virology, immunology and medical genetics, and director of Human Cancer Genetics at Ohio State and the OSUCCC – James.

Some more progress in James-led research. We’ve got to keep ahead of this stuff..

New Emergency Department at The James

The new James/Wexner will have an Emergency Department geared towards  the special conditions experienced by cancer patients.

Read More

Weekend Wonderings

Written April 13th, 2014 by Ken
boyd4

Boyd Crowder still decidin’ whether to itemize or take the standard deduction.

Welcome to this week’s edition of Weekend Wonderings. Basketball season is finally over. Congratulations to the UConn Huskies for winning the men’s and the women’s NCAA Championships. Let the good times roll in Storrs, CT.  The OSU football team’s Spring game was yesterday, but I’m sure that I’ll have some thoughts in next week’s edition.

The James/Wexner

Well-Known Cancer Gene NRAS Produces Five Variants, Study Finds

  • NRAS is one of the most studied of cancer-related genes.
  • This study found that the gene produces five variants, not just one form as previously thought.
  • The finding might help improve drugs for cancers that involve NRAS.

A new study shows that a gene discovered 30 years ago and now known to play a fundamental role in cancer development produces five different gene variants (called isoforms), rather than just the one original form, as thought.

The study of the NRAS gene by researchers at the (OSUCCC – James) identified four previously unknown variants that the NRAS gene produces. The finding might help improve drugs for cancers in which aberrant activation of NRAS plays a crucial role. It also suggests that NRAS might affect additional target molecules in cells, the researchers say.

The isoforms show striking differences in size, abundance and effects. For example, the historically known protein (isoform 1) is 189 amino-acids long, while one of the newly discovered variants, isoform 5, is only 20 amino-acids long. Isoform 5 was the most aggressive variant in proliferation and transformation assays.

The last sentence and a half are not surprising. A smaller, “stripped-down” gene is much more likely to reproduce more quickly than its “bigger” brethren. As such, the isoform 5 variant may be the most dangerous of the five that were identified. As long as I’m on genes..

Here’s an article by Rameek Roychowdhury MD, PhD that explains genomics and its use at The James. It is a good, short overview, and a very good read.

Read More

Weekend Wonderings

Written April 6th, 2014 by Ken
Bruno

G Bruno

Welcome to this week’s edition of Weekend Wonderings. Basketball season is over, if you’re an Ohio State fan. And probably if you’ve gotten into any NCAA pools, as well. The Spring sports are well under way, and we have some time before OSU’s Spring Game. Grab whatever beverage that you need and let’s proceed.

The James/Wexner

An Overview of the BR-002 Trial in Breast Cancer:

Julia White, MD, professor, director, Breast Radiation Oncology, vice chair, Clinical Research, The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center, discusses the BR-002 trial, which will evaluate the rate of complete tumor ablation of breast cancers that are less than or equal to 2 centimeters.

Ablation refers to local methods that destroy the tumor without removing it. Ablation treatment of tumors does work. They do a tremendous job of it at The James.

Keeping up:

If you want to keep current with cancer research and treatment at The James, you can sign up to their blog.

Read More

Silver Bullet Points. Shaken, Not Stirred.

Written April 2nd, 2014 by MaliBuckeye

Happy Wednesday, and happiest birthday to the young Buckeye in my avatar photo.  Given all of the excitement here on the left coast over the past weekend, my choice for today’s soundtrack was pretty much decided for me. Thoughts and prayers go out to our friends in Chile and South/Central Americas as well…

Ken has his beverage, I have mine

Buckeye 411

  • He Guapo’d Me With Science! In news that’s sure to make Charles and Eric gleeful, former Buckeye Carlos Hyde will be involved in an upcoming edition of Sports Science. He also got some tips from a legend today as a part of his trip to Los Angeles… there are exciting things ahead, for sure!
  • Injury Bug Strikes- Already missing Vonn Bell and Jalin Marshall, the Scarlet and Gray announced today that starting tight end Jeff Heuerman will miss the rest of the spring following surgery to address an ankle sprain. According to Meyer’s press conference on Tuesday, though, Nick Vannett and Marcus Baugh are more than picking up the slack in practice.
  • Good Day For The D… Coaches continue to rave about the defensive line and their efforts during Spring ball; and Coach Meyer pointed to Josh Perry as someone who’s also rising to the occasion at the linebacker position.
  • …Means A Bad Day For The O- Taylor Decker and Cardale Jones were both identified as players who struggled Tuesday, although Curtis Samuel was mentioned as someone who’s really catching on quickly in practice. We’re also hearing solid things from Mike Thomas, who’s work in the off season may be starting to pay huge dividends.
  • On Collars- Coach Meyer again addressed his passion for having a “blue collar” team, and said that the defensive side of the ball was what needed the most attention in this area; that the “culture had slipped”. Later, though, he talked about his belief that college student athletes, while working hard, are not employees… but also said that they deserved a greater stipend than what they currently received.
  • Something To Keep In Mind- Using the NCAA’s Strength Of Schedule Metric, Ohio State’s upcoming season is ranked #35 in the country. The mighty Crimson Tide come in at 95… out of 128 or so.  Roll Freakin’ Tide.
  • Hoop Hope From Hokie? Thad Matta has already added one “big man” via transfer this season, might seven footer Trevor Thompson be next? Would certainly change the face of the team…
  • Spring Game- Will be televised on BTN, and livechatted here at tBBC.
  • Student Day- If you’ve still got your BuckID, head down to the WHAC on Saturday for the third annual event. If you needed motivation, Sammy Silverman provides it: Read More

Weekend Wonderings

Written March 30th, 2014 by Ken
Bruno

G Bruno

Welcome to this week’s edition of Weekend Wonderings. The basketball season is over for both the men’s and women’s teams, Spring football practice has begun and we are only a couple weeks away from the Spring Game. Grab whatever beverage that you need and let’s proceed.

The James/Wexner

We have a couple of items this week.

  • Here is an example of research work at the James being commercialized, via a licensing agreement, as an avenue to get their research results available for general medical treatment, as well as provide some economic benefit to Ohio State.

The Ohio State University, through the Ohio State Innovation Foundation, has signed an exclusive world-wide licensing agreement with MedVax Technologies, Inc., for the licensing of groundbreaking cancer peptide vaccine technologies.

The anticancer vaccine technologies are designed for the treatment and prevention of cancers associated with the HER2 protein. These include breast, ovarian, lung, colon and pancreatic cancers, and gastrointestinal stromal tumors. The commitment by MedVax will allow innovative clinical trials for various cancers to be conducted in the near future.

  •  Sometimes knowing what doesn’t work is very valuable, too.  The results of this study show the importance of follow-up studies done by a research university such as Ohio State. Rather than accept that an anti-cancer agent “works” and be done with it, this study points up the distinct possibility that in some patients, it may actually cause cancer growth.

Anticancer agents that target a cell-cycle regulatory protein to inhibit tumor growth might actually promote the development and progression of certain B-cell lymphomas, according to a new study led by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center.

The study indicates that inhibiting CDK4, a regulator of the cell cycle, promotes genetic instability and the development or progression of B-cell lymphomas that are driven by the MYC oncogene.

Commentary Read More

Weekend Wonderings: Ides of March Edition

Written March 16th, 2014 by Ken
jc

J Caesar

Welcome to the mid-March Weekend Wonderings. We’re finishing up some Conference basketball, before beginning some March Madness. Not that they didn’t have some madness of their own going on in Rome in 44 B.C. Grab a goblet of your favorite libation and let’s proceed.

Caesar:  Who is it in the press that calls on me? 
I hear a tongue shriller than all the music 
Cry "Caesar!" Speak, Caesar is turn'd to hear.

Soothsayer: Beware the ides of March. 

Caesar: What man is that?

Brutus: A soothsayer bids you beware the ides of March.

Julius Caesar Act 1, scene 2, 15-19

The James/Wexner
DoubleHelixFirst up:  A potential new gene mutation that might drive lung cancer development and growth has been identified by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC-James).

A multi-institutional team lead by OSUCCC-James researchers reports the findings in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. The study describes a patient with advanced lung cancer who was treated with the targeted drug sorafenib while on a clinical trial. Within two months, she demonstrated a near complete response, and she remained progression-free and asymptomatic for five years while continuing to take sorafenib by mouth.

Per Dr David Carbone:

“Our study suggests that we can discover important new gene mutations that drive cancer development and progression by analyzing genes in cancer cells from patients who fare far better or far worse than others in a particular clinical trial.”

Carbone adds that using genome sequencing to identifying genetic mutations in a patient’s cancer cells can help better match patients with drugs that are most likely to eradicate their cancer.

“Knowing which mutations are present in lung tumors can help us tailor a patient’s treatment to the unique genetic features present in his or her cancer cells. That knowledge can also help us develop new drugs that target previously unrecognized gene mutations in lung and other cancers.  This is a great example of new scientific discoveries being made from clinical observations in patients, which can then be brought back to the clinic to help future patients.”

So, now we’re getting to a point where genome sequencing is providing clues on what to use, and just as importantly, what not to use in patient treatments. Read More

Weekend Wonderings: I Can’t Believe It’s March

Written March 2nd, 2014 by Ken

thinking chimpWelcome to this week’s edition of Weekend Wonderings.  Despite what you see and feel outside, we are less than three weeks aways from Spring. Enjoy Winter while you can. Grab whatever beverage that you need and let’s proceed.

The James/Wexner

Well, this is interesting.. It seems that the BMJ (formerly) British Medical Journal published a study questioning the advisability of breast cancer screening via mammography, and to say the least, the report is being excoriated.

Women questioning the value of screening mammography based on a recent study published in BMJ (formerly British Medical Journal) should pause and look more closely at the data. Medical societies and breast cancer specialists across the nation agree: The data is flawed and misleading. There is no question that screening mammography saves lives.

There appear to be two huge flaws with the study. First, the study used obsolete scanning devices and the staff was not properly trained in the procedure. The second was, for a supposed randomized sampling, the test subjects were assigned to “test” and “control” groups in a non-randomized manner. Both of these errors are show-stoppers. I’d suspect that tBBC’s resident ‘lab rat’ (Eric) would not approve of these testing protocol shenanigans.

Next up, genetics!

“COLUMBUS, Ohio — A potential new gene mutation that might drive lung cancer development and growth has been identified by researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC-James).

A multi-institutional team led by OSUCCC-James researchers reports the findings in the Journal of Clinical Investigation. The study describes a patient with advanced lung cancer who was treated with the targeted drug sorafenib while on a clinical trial.”

A couple of things, here. First, this is another example of not so much “root cause analysis” as “root cause determination”. Cancer in particular, is not a one-size-fits-all disease in regards to prevention/treatment. This is more excellent work by the James. My second point, directed to those folks who “did” the breast cancer-mammogram “study” above; this is how you conduct clinical trials. Read More