SCIENCE IN THE NEWS WEEKLY
T-DM1 Treats Breast Cancer With Fewer Side Effects
According to results of a study presented to the American Society of Clinical Oncology at its meeting last week in Chicago, a drug that delivers a powerful poison to tumors without some of the side effects of traditional treatments can delay the worsening of breast cancer and also appears to substantially prolong lives.
In other biomedical news, researchers say multiple CT scans in childhood can increase the risk of developing brain cancer or leukemia. The British-led team examined the medical records of almost 180,000 young patients. But writing in The Lancet the authors emphasized that the benefits of the scans usually outweighed the risks.
A blood sample from the mother and saliva from the father have been used to sequence the genome of a fetus in the womb, just 18 weeks into the pregnancy. The findings could eventually lead to fetuses being screened for thousands of genetic disorders in a single, safe test. But it would also raise "many ethical questions."
NPR featured an Australian scientist's 20-year quest to defeat dengue fever. Dengue sickens tens of millions and kills tens of thousands every year. There's no cure, no vaccine and pretty much no way to prevent it. It's one of those diseases transmitted by a mosquito, like malaria.
An antibody-based treatment developed at the Johns Hopkins University either eliminated or shrank tumors in 49 of 236 patients with certain types of advanced skin, kidney and lung cancer. Previous cancer immuno-therapies have worked in smaller percentages of patients. The results of the phase I clinical trial were published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
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VIDEO: The Promise and Peril of Drones
The automation of tasks at work and at home is just around the corner, including driving cars, piloting planes, delivering packages, and transporting weapons. Unmanned aerial vehicles are rapidly evolving to meet both society’s and the military’s needs in automation and better efficiency.
During her time as one of the first female fighter pilots in the US Navy, Dr. Missy Cummings observed that computers could take off and land a plane more precisely than humans. Because of this breakthrough and her fascination with this growing technology, she began human–drone interaction research.
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