Scientific Program

Day 1

Day 1

  • Perioperative use of NSAID might prevent early relapses in breast and other cancers: An upstream approach

    Harvard University

    A bimodal pattern of hazard of relapse among early stage breast cancer patients has been identified in multiple databases from US, Europe and Asia. We are studying these data to determine if this can lead to new ideas on how to prevent relapse in breast cancer. Using computer simulation and access to a very high quality database from Milan for patients treated with mastectomy only, we proposed that relapses within 3 years of surgery are stimulated somehow by the surgical procedure. Most relapses in breast cancer are in this early category. Retrospective data from a Brussels anesthesiology group suggests a plausible mechanism. Use of ketorolac, a common NSAID analgesic used in surgery was associated with far superior disease-free survival in the first 5 years after surgery. The expected prominent early relapse events in months 9-18 are reduced 5-fold. Transient systemic inflammation accompanying surgery (identified by IL-6 in serum) could facilitate angiogenesis of dormant micrometastases, proliferation of dormant single cells, and seeding of circulating cancer stem cells (perhaps in part released from bone marrow) resulting in early relapse and could have been effectively blocked by the perioperative anti-inflammatory agent. If this observation holds up to further scrutiny, it could mean that the simple use of this safe, inexpensive and effective anti-inflammatory agent at surgery might eliminate early relapses. We suggest this would be most effective for triple negative breast cancer and be especially valuable in low and middle income countries. Similar bimodal patterns have been identified in other cancers suggesting a general effect.

  • An empirical assay for assessing genomic sensitivity and for improving cancer diagnostics

    University of Bradford

    Diana Anderson holds the established Chair in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Bradford. She obtained her first degree in the University of Wales and second degrees in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Manchester. She has 450+ peer-reviewed papers, 9 books, has successfully supervised 29 PhDs, and been a Member of Editorial Boards of 10 international journals. She has been or is Editor in Chief of a book Series on toxicology for J. Wiley and sons and the Royal Society of Chemistry respectively. She gives key note addresses at various international meetings. She is a consultant for many international organizations, such as the WHO, NATO, TWAS, UNIDO and the OECD.


    Detection tests have been developed for many cancers, but there is no single test to identify cancer in general. We have developed such an assay. In this modified patented comet assay, we investigated peripheral lymphocytes of 208 individuals: 20 melanoma, 34 colon cancer, 4 lung cancer patients 18 suspect melanoma, 28 polyposis, 10 COPD patients and 94 healthy volunteers. The natural logarithm of the olive tail moment was plotted for exposure to UVA through different agar depths for each of the above groups and analyzed using a repeated measures regression model. Response patterns for cancer patients formed a plateau after treating with UVA where intensity varied with different agar depths. In comparison, response patterns for healthy individuals returned towards control values and for pre/suspected cancers were intermediate with less of a plateau. All cancers tested exhibited comparable responses. Analyses of receiver operating characteristic curves, of mean log olive tail moments, for all cancers plus pre/suspected-cancer versus controls gave a value for the area under the curve of 0.87; for cancer versus pre/suspected-cancer plus controls the value was 0.89 and for cancer alone versus controls alone (excluding pre/suspected-cancer), the value was 0.93. By varying the threshold for test positivity, its sensitivity or specificity can approach 100% whilst maintaining acceptable complementary measures. Evidence presented indicates that this modified assay shows promise as both a stand-alone test and as a possible adjunct to other investigative procedures, as part of detection programmes for a range of cancers.

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