Colon/Bowel Cancer: November 2006 Archives

State offers free cancer tests


digestive systemAUSTRALIA - Queensland is the first state to provide its citizens with free bowel cancer tests, the state Government says.


The Queensland Government says the tests will be provided under a new National Bowel Cancer Screening Program, which will be rolled out across the country over the next few years.

State Health Minister Stephen Robertson said today that people over the age of 50 were most at risk, and that more than 200,000 Queenslanders in that age group would be invited to have a free test before June 2008.

"Not only is Queensland the first state to kick off the new program but we're also the only state to have committed funds specifically dedicated to support the statewide roll-out of the program," Mr Robertson said.

"Checklist" aims to improve colon cancer care

colon cancerNEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Researchers have developed a checklist of measures they say could improve the quality of care for people undergoing colon cancer surgery.

It's becoming increasingly important to measure the quality of surgical care for colon cancer, as the population continues to age and more people are treated for the disease, according to researchers from the University of California Los Angeles.

Of the 148,000 Americans diagnosed with colon cancer this year, up to 95 percent will have surgery to remove their tumors -- at facilities ranging from major medical centers to community hospitals and local surgery centers.

Cancer stem cells start tumors in mice


lab tests WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Stem cells -- the master cells that give rise to all the blood and tissue in the body -- may also be responsible for tumors, according to two separate studies published on Sunday.

Canadian and Italian researchers both found that specialized colon cancer stem cells appeared to be the sources of colon cancer tumors in mice.

Their findings, published in the journal Nature, support the idea that future cancer treatments will have to home in on cancer stem cells.

Similar findings have been seen for leukemia, breast and brain cancers, but the two studies are the first to show cancer stem cells are also responsible for colon tumors.

Amgen says cancer drug prices under scrutiny

colorectal cancer and polypNEW YORK (Reuters) - Amgen Inc., which last month launched its new cancer drug Vectibix at a 20 percent discount to rival product Erbitux, said on Monday cancer companies were under mounting pressure to prove the value of their medicines.

Cancer care has recently seen real advances with the approval of targeted therapies that extend lives with far fewer toxic side effects than standard chemotherapy, but price tags running into tens of thousands of dollars a years means a spiraling bill for payers.

"There is a lot of scrutiny on the cost of cancer therapeutics right now," Cynthia Schwalm, vice president and general manager of oncology, told the Reuters Health Summit in New York.

"If you look at all the oncology research going forward, companies are going to have to show more value, they are going to show how they work well with other products or they don't, and there will be more choice for oncologists and payers. That's just a natural occurrence."

Men Face Higher Colon Cancer Risk

colon cancerA new study finds that polyps linked to colon cancer are 73 percent more common in men than in women, leading researchers to suggest that colorectal cancer screening guidelines be changed.

For example, perhaps women might want to start their screening at a later age, suggested the Polish authors of a paper published in the Nov. 2 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Other experts objected to the idea, however.

" Everybody needs to get screened," said Dr. Jerald Wishner, director of the colorectal cancer program and colorectal surgery at Northern Westchester Hospital in Mt. Kisco, New York. "The worst thing that could happen is for people to interpret that we don't have to worry about women."

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Colon/Bowel Cancer category from November 2006.

Colon/Bowel Cancer: October 2006 is the previous archive.

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