Colon cancer cell switch helps evades treatment

Researchers in Germany have discovered that colon cancers are often resistant to existing drug treatments because they are composed of two different cell types that can replace each other when one cell type is killed. The study, 'Targeting tumor cell plasticity by combined inhibition of NOTCH and MAPK signaling in colon cancer', published in the Journal of Experimental Medicine, suggests that combination therapies targeting both cell types at once may be more effective at treating colorectal cancer, the third highest cause of cancer-related death in the United States.

ACPGBI publishes paper outlining future training needs for the colorectal community

After consultation with its members, the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland (ACPGBI) has published a paper outlining the perceived educational needs, knowledge and skill gaps, and current barriers of the UK and Ireland colorectal community. The paper, ‘Developing a national colorectal educational agenda: a survey of the Association of Coloproctology of Great Britain and Ireland’, was published in Colorectal Disease.

Nitrate in drinking water increases the risk of colorectal cancer

There is an increased risk of colon and rectal cancer in connection with nitrate in drinking water, according to a study from Aarhus University, Aarhus and the Geological Survey of Denmark and Greenland (GEUS) and the National Centre for Register-based Research also from Aarhus University Denmark. Nitrate in groundwater and drinking water, which primarily comes from fertilisers used in the agricultural production, has not only been subject to decades of environmental awareness - it has also been suspected of increasing the risk of cancer.

Which stool test is best for colorectal cancer detection?

With the development of faecal immunochemical tests (FIT), many breathed a sigh of relief. The non-invasive tool promises to accurately detect blood in the stool, often an early sign of cancer, allowing patients to skip the colonoscopy if test results are negative. What's more, the sample can be collected in the privacy of one's own home with no dietary or medical restrictions. But just how accurate are these new FIT tests?

AMI launches FiXcision for the precise treatment of anal fistulas

AMI has launched a state-of-the-art product for treating simple anal fistulas, FiXcision. The instrument is for precise circular excision of the fistula epithelium and can be done in just a few simple steps.

The FiXcision system allows the probing of the fistula tract, compression of the affected tissue by insertion of the guide and tissue removal of the complete circumference of the fistula tract by cutting alongside the guide.

Using immunotherapy to treat aggressive colon tumours

Researchers from the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), have discovered that the hormone TGF-beta is responsible for the ‘blindness’ of the immune system to colon cancer cells. Although, immunotherapy against cancer cells has become a powerful approach to treat cancers such as melanoma and lung cancer, most colon tumours appeared to be unresponsive to this kind of therapy.

Increase in patients with benign polyps referred for surgery after screening programme

Researchers in The Netherlands have reported an increase in the number of patients with benign polyps referred for surgery after the implementation of a national bowel screening programme, which according to the study authors, is the first study to report such an increase reflecting daily clinical practice and the correlation of pathological findings to clinical outcome.

Researchers develop novel immunotherapy to target colorectal cancer

A Yale-led research team has developed an antibody that blocks tumours in animal models of colorectal cancer. If the findings are confirmed in clinical trials, the antibody-based treatment could become an effective weapon against colorectal cancer, and possibly other cancers, that resist current immunotherapies.