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The CTCA blog

Welcome to the new CancerCenter


We’re excited to announce the launch of a new, more patient-focused Cancer Treatment Centers of America website.

Our new website was designed to help you and your loved ones through every step of the cancer journey. We’ve added several features to help you find the information you need. At the new, you can:

Researchers uncover link between obesity and liver cancer


New research published in Nature is among the first to identify why obesity is a risk factor for cancer. Specifically, researchers found that individuals who are obese are more likely to develop liver cancer than their normal weight counterparts.

The culprit: microbes that live in our guts.

Does sugar 'feed' cancer?


Websites promoting the idea that sugar “feeds” cancer suggest that eating foods with sugar makes cancer grow faster. As a result, some cancer patients forego eating any sugar, eliminating beneficial foods, such as fruits, that contain essential nutrients.

There is no conclusive research on human subjects to prove that sugar makes cancerous cells grow and metastasize. Avoiding foods with processed sugar is a good idea in general, but eliminating foods with natural sugar won’t stop cancer cells from dividing.

New study shows a link between low sperm production and cancer


A study conducted by the Stanford School of Medicine found that men who are diagnosed as azoospermic, infertile due to lack of sperm in ejaculate, are more prone to developing cancer than men without this condition. A man diagnosed as azoospermic before he turns 30 has eight times the risk of cancer as a man without the condition.

“An azoospermic man’s risk for developing cancer is similar to that for a typical man 10 years older,” said Michael Eisenberg, MD, PhD, assistant professor of urology at Stanford and director of male reproductive medicine and surgery at Stanford Hospital & Clinics. Eisenberg is lead author of the study, published online June 20 in Fertility and Sterility.

CTCA to host grand opening for new stem cell unit in Philadelphia


On Thursday, CTCA in Philadelphia will host a Grand Opening Celebration for the hospital’s new Stem Cell Transplant & Cellular Therapy Unit.

The 17,000-square-foot unit will offer patients with hematologic malignancies state-of-the-art stem cell transplantation therapies and a comprehensive array of integrative oncology services to promote quality of life. Hematologic malignancies are cancers that affect the blood, bone marrow and lymph nodes.

Genomic tumor assessment offers more personalized treatment


For more than 100 years, scientists have been searching for better ways to treat cancer. The development of an innovative diagnostic tool, called the genomic tumor assessment, represents a significant step forward for cancer patients.

Genomic tumor assessment, which is offered at CTCA, examines changes occurring within an individual patient’s tumor to identify treatment options not previously considered.

Blood test may help with colorectal cancer screening, early tests show


Early tests are being done to research levels of a specific gene in the blood that may be linked to colorectal cancer. A study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute shows the findings.

Researchers in the gastrointestinal cancer research lab at Baylor Research Institute in Dallas screened several hundred patients to check for levels of miR-21 – a piece of DNA known as microRNA – in their blood. The patients either had colorectal polyps, which are non-cancerous, or colorectal cancer.

Scientists find gene linked to aggressive liver cancer


An international team of scientists has identified a gene associated with aggressive liver cancer, which could lead to more targeted therapies. The finding also represents another step toward precision cancer treatment.

Led by National University of Singapore, the team found that patients with hepatocellular carcinoma express SALL4, a stem cell gene expressed in human fetuses but inactive in noncancerous adults.

Study follows childhood cancer survivors decades after treatment


St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has embarked on a major research study to investigate the long-term effects of cancer therapy on childhood survivors.

 “We have known for many years that adults who were treated for cancer in childhood have a higher risk for health problems, and these health problems appear to increase as they age,” said Dr. Melissa Hudson, principal investigator and Director of St. Jude’s Division of Cancer Survivorship.

Genes linked to breast and ovarian cancers can't be patented


The Supreme Court’s ruling that human genes cannot be patented paves the way for new, more affordable tests for breast and ovarian cancer risk.

With a unanimous decision, the high court’s ruling on Thursday ended the almost 20-year monopoly Myriad Genetics held over testing for BRCA 1 and 2 genes. Mutations to either gene indicate a high risk for breast and ovarian cancers.

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