The fine art of mixing drug cocktails - such as for cancer treatment - is incredibly complicated, especially once you get into three or more ingredients. The numbers of possible interactions and side effects are virtually infinite. Now, a new model from the lab of Prof. Uri Alon lets scientists compare combinations of drugs to determine which work well together, and with the fewest side effects. This is a major step forward in personalized medicine.
December 07, 2016
Triple-negative breast cancer is particularly hard to treat because, as its name suggests, it lacks three receptors that usually serve as targets for anti-cancer drugs. Now, Prof. Sima Lev has identified a promising new combination therapy that not only inhibits tumor growth and survival, but gets around the problem of drug-induced resistance.
November 30, 2016
Many years ago, Prof. Michael Sela and colleagues found that antibodies inhibiting EGFR, a receptor that plays a role in cancer, have a synergistic anti-cancer effect when used with chemotherapy. That discovery has now led to three cancer-treating drugs: Erbitux®, Vectibix®, and, most recently, Portrazza™, just FDA approved for a form of lung cancer.
March 16, 2016
Three updates from the labs of the Weizmann Institute: discovery of a tumor suppressor gene behind a deadly form of melanoma; finding that lack of a certain protein leads to obesity, no matter the diet; and learning why plants ""drive"" with one foot on the brake rather than operate at full efficiency.
October 26, 2015
Lung cancer, the world's deadliest cancer, can be apparently successfully treated, only to return. And when it does so, it's often resistant to the drugs that worked the first time. Fortunately, Prof. Yosef Yarden has devised a novel three-pronged strategy that, in mice, kept lung cancer cells from developing resistance in the first place.
June 03, 2015
Cells send a constant stream of messages to their nuclei for making day-to-day decisions. But this rapid, long-distance communication system is vulnerable to mutations that can lead to unstopped, repeated messages – a ""spam attack"" – that promotes cancer. Now, Prof. Rony Seger and his team have identified a molecule that stops cancer cells from getting their ""mail.""
March 30, 2015
Work, school, errands, commutes … it makes sense that we are more stressed during the day than when we're sleeping. And we do, in fact, produce more glucocorticoid (GC) – aka the stress hormone – during our waking hours. Now Weizmann scientists have found that GC also helps suppress cancer growth, meaning that perhaps we should be administering cancer drugs at night, while our bodies aren't fighting the cancer themselves.
October 06, 2014
Leukemia cells are able to stay alive, aggressively dividing, virtually forever… but how? New Weizmann research suggests that about 25 percent of the time, there is a ""balance of terror"" between the cancer-promoting gene and a second, normal version. This normal gene functions alongside the mutation, keeping the cells both cancerous and alive.
September 29, 2013
Prof. Yardena Samuels, who comes to Weizmann from the National Human Genome Research Institute, uses DNA sequencing to identify new genetic mutations involved in melanoma. She has already made progress by identifying a mutation – found in nearly one-fifth of melanoma cases – in a gene that is already targeted by an approved drug.
December 01, 2012