Correlative Sciences

A potential mechanism of tumor resistance in thyroid cancer

Mutations to a gene known as BRAF (i.e. BRAFV600E) are present in more than half of papillary thyroid carcinomas (PTCs) and nearly 75 percent of melanomas. Selective inhibitors that target the BRAFV600E oncoprotein, such as vemurafenib, have shown promise as a treatment for aggressive PTC in clinical trials. However, most patients eventually develop resistance to the therapy and the disease progresses. Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center researchers led by Carmelo Nucera, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor at Harvard Medical School and Associate at the Thyroid Cancer Translational Research... Continue reading

2017 Robert F. Gagel ITOG Discovery Award

Dr. Gagel is a founding member of ITOG and a tireless advocate for thyroid cancer patients and research. In honor of his invaluable contributions to ITOG and advances in thyroid cancer treatment, a grant was established in his name to further the development of novel treatments for thyroid cancer. After a selective peer-review process, the ITOG Board of Directors is pleased to announce that the 2017 Robert F. Gagel ITOG Discovery Award has been granted to Dr. Sareh Parangi, MD, a highly accomplished endocrine surgeon at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston. She... Continue reading

Liquid Biopsy for Thyroid Cancer – Where we are now and where we are heading

For cancer patients, liquid biopsy is a term that is applied when the fluid in blood, saliva, or urine is used identify tumor cells, tumor DNA, or tumor RNA.  Blood is perhaps the most commonly used source and, in the case of thyroid cancer patients, provides an opportunity to compare with the traditional tumor markers used to monitor patients, such as thyroglobulin or calcitonin. There are several perceived clinical benefits of liquid biopsy.  These include roles in early detection of cancer, molecular diagnosis, prognosis, detection of progression or response to treatment, and finally in... Continue reading

Gene expression analysis may help minimize surgery for thyroid nodules

Alexander and colleagues reported the results of a prospective, multicenter study of 3789 patients who underwent fine-needle aspiration (FNA) of thyroid nodules (New England Journal of Medicine, August 23, 2012).   The goal of FNA is to identify patients who have thyroid cancer and require thyroidectomy.  Unfortunately FNA is not always diagnostic, and some nodules are pathologically indeterminate, meaning that cancer can not be excluded.  Currently many of these patients have thyroid surgery, though the majority of patients with indeterminate results on FNA do not have thyroid cancer. ... Continue reading

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