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Summer, 2013

Director's Message, Summer 2013

Welcome to the summer edition of the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center's electronic newsletter. I'm pleased to be able to share with you some of the interesting and exciting ways that the UMCCC and our partners across campus continue to make great strides in understanding, diagnosing, preventing and treating cancer.

Molecular Messages

Tumor cells secrete signals that call in wound healing cells to the tumor site. In the process, the normal wound healing cells make the tumor cells more aggressive and able to metastasize. But for the first time, scientists at the University of Michigan have decoded the molecular chatter that ramps certain cancer cells into overdrive and can cause tumors to metastasize throughout the body.

Prostate Cancer Study

Are certain drugs more effective against some types of prostate cancers than others? Researchers know that not all therapies work for all patients -- the next question is to figure out how to match the right treatments with the right patients.

Cardio-Oncology Program

Cardiologists and oncologists will work together to prevent heart damage caused by cancer treatment, a risk faced by as much as one-third of cancer patients. As cancer therapy becomes more effective and the number of cancer survivors increases, doctors are faced with a new challenge: ensuring patients have a healthy heart to enjoy the rest of their lives.

Decision Aids

With a focus on shared decision making between doctors and patients, more studies needed to determine how decision aids help guide choices for cancer screening. When it comes to a cancer diagnosis, timing can be everything -- the sooner it's found, the more treatable it is. But when and how often should someone get screened?

Wicha Remembers

Max Wicha, M.D., director of the University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center, reflects on the center's first 25 years and what the future may hold.

Incomplete Cancer Treatment

Side effects cited as patients' most common reason for skipping hormone-blocking therapy or stopping early One-quarter of women who should take hormone-blocking therapies as part of their breast cancer treatment either do not start or do not complete the five-year course, according to a new study led by University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers.