Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (United Kingdom) researchers analyzed the genetic codes of 7,042 cases of cancer in people from around the world, covering 30 different types of the disease, to ascertain signatures of mutational processes. The team discovered that all the cancers contained two or more signatures – a finding that suggests the variety of processes that work together when a cancer develops. The researchers also found that different cancers have different numbers of mutational processes, with some signatures are in multiple cancer types, while others are only found in one type. Out of the 30 cancers studied, 25 had signatures from mutational processes linked to ageing. The investigators also discovered that a family of enzymes called APOBECs, known to mutate DNA, was linked to more than half of the cancer types studied. The study authors comment that: “The results reveal the diversity of mutational processes underlying the development of cancer, with potential implications for understanding of cancer aetiology, prevention and therapy.”
Alexandrov LB, Nik-Zainal S, Wedge DC, Aparicio SA, Behjati S, Biankin AV, et al. “Signatures of mutational processes in human cancer.” Nature. 2013 Aug 14.
Volunteering may improve your mental health and help you live longer.
Higher debt associates with worse health, among young Americans.
Daily consumption of sea buckthorn berries and its extracts may promote metabolic and heart health, among overweight women.
To optimize stem cell therapies, UK researchers develop gold nanoprobes that help to enable cell identification on a molecular scale.
Among cancer survivors experiencing sleep difficulties, yoga helps to improve sleep quality.
Moderate levels of added sugar reduce survival and compromises fitness and reproduction, in a lab animal model.
People who consume dairy products are at reduced risk of developing type-2 diabetes.
British researchers have developed a comprehensive map of mutational processes behind the development of tumors.
Celery – as well as artichokes and the herb Mexican oregano – contain apigenin and luteolin, flavonoid compounds that kill human pancreatic cancer cells.
Depression in patients with type 2 diabetes is a significant risk factor for dementia.
Molecular robots hone in on specific populations of human cells, directing therapeutic drugs to specific targets.
Saliva from people who use cell phones as little as eight hours a month show increases in markers that correlate to potential cancer risk.
Concept utilizes nanoparticles that concentrate and expand in the presence of higher acidity found in tumor cells.
Large-scale European study suggests that long-term exposure to low-level air pollution may increase the risk of lung cancer, and adenocarcinoma in particular.
Consuming a modest amount of walnuts may confer protective effects against prostate cancer, suggests data from a lab animal study.
Increased intakes of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids may cut a woman’s risk of developing breast cancer by up to 14%.
Higher blood levels of Vitamin B6 associate with less damage to DNA, among men.
Chlamydia trachomatis can cause mutations in the host DNA, thereby leading to the development of cancer.
The invisible remains of cigarette smoke that deposit on carpeting, clothing, furniture and other surfaces may be a major cause of significant genetic damage in
Exposure to low doses of the synthetic compound bisphenol A (BPA) is linked to increased risk of prostate cancer in human stem cells.
Tip #192 - Stay Connected
Researchers from the University of Chicago (Illinois, USA) report that social isolation may be detrimental to both mental and physical health. The team analyzed data from the National Social Life, Health, and Aging Project, a nationwide US study involving 3,000 men and women, ages 57 to 85 years. They arrived at three key findings regarding the relationships between health and different types of isolation:
• The researchers found that the most socially connected older adults are three times as likely to report very good or excellent health compared to those who are least connected, regardless of whether they feel isolated.
• The team found that older adults who feel least isolated are five times as likely to report very good or excellent health as those who feel most isolated, regardless of their actual level of social connectedness.
• They determined that social disconnectedness is not related to mental health unless it brings feelings of loneliness and isolation.
Separately, Rush University Medical Center (Illinois, USA) researchers studied 906 older men and women, testing their motor functions (including grip, pinch strength, balance, and walking) and surveying their social activity, for a period of 5 years. Those study participants with less social activity were found to have a more rapid rate of motor function decline. Specifically, the team found that every one-point decrease in social activity corresponded to an increase in functional aging of 5 years, translating to a 40% higher risk of death and 65% higher risk of disability.