NCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research NewsNCI Cancer Bulletin: A Trusted Source for Cancer Research News
September 5, 2006 • Volume 3 / Number 34 E-Mail This Document  |  Download PDF  |  Bulletin Archive/Search  |  Subscribe

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Featured Article

Gene Therapy Offers Treatment for Metastatic Melanoma

NCI researchers, led by Dr. Steven A. Rosenberg, chief of surgery in NCI's Center for Clinical Research (CCR), achieved sustained regression of advanced melanoma by genetically engineering a patient's own white blood cells to recognize and attack cancer cells, as reported online August 31 in Science.

The treatment resulted in tumor regression for 2 of 17 patients: a 52-year-old man with advanced melanoma that had spread subcutaneously and to his liver, and a 30-year-old man whose melanoma had metastasized to his lymph nodes. Both men have remained disease-free more than a year after their treatment.  Read more  

Director's Update

Guest Update by Dr. Asad Umar

NCI Committed to Colorectal Cancer Prevention

Dr. Asad Umar Over the last several years, there has been important progress in clinical research testing the cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2) inhibitor celecoxib (Celebrex) to prevent the recurrence of colon polyps in individuals who have had such polyps removed. This includes the recently published efficacy results of two phase III trials - the Adenoma Prevention with Celecoxib (APC) and PreSAP trials - both of which demonstrated a significant reduction in the recurrence of colon polyps among participants taking celecoxib compared with placebo.

These trials, however, were not entirely positive for the safety profile of celecoxib. According to an NCI-funded independent safety analysis of data from both trials, there is an increased risk of serious adverse cardiovascular events associated with the daily use of celecoxib, particularly at higher doses. Celecoxib, the analysis found, can significantly increase blood pressure, which could possibly account for the increased cardiac risk. This must be investigated further, however. (Detailed information on the results of these studies and NCI-supported studies involving celecoxib are available on the NCI Web site.)  Read more  


The NCI Cancer Bulletin is produced by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). NCI, which was established in 1937, leads the national effort to eliminate the suffering and death due to cancer. Through basic, clinical, and population-based biomedical research and training, NCI conducts and supports research that will lead to a future in which we can identify the environmental and genetic causes of cancer, prevent cancer before it starts, identify cancers that do develop at the earliest stage, eliminate cancers through innovative treatment interventions, and biologically control those cancers that we cannot eliminate so they become manageable, chronic diseases.

For more information on cancer, call 1-800-4-CANCER or visit http://www.cancer.gov.

NCI Cancer Bulletin staff can be reached at ncicancerbulletin@mail.nih.gov.