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Justin Balko Archives

Study identifies biomarker for breast cancer response to immunotherapy

Aug. 12, 2021—A biomarker that has proven to be a predictor for response to immunotherapies in melanoma patients also has clinical relevance for breast cancer patients, according to a new study published in Clinical Cancer Research, a journal of the American Association for Cancer Research.

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Arthritis drug may treat immunotherapy-related heart complication

Dec. 22, 2020—by Tom Wilemon A drug typically prescribed for rheumatoid arthritis may also be effective in treating a rare but potentially deadly heart complication some cancer patients experience after taking immunotherapies, according to a study published in Cancer Discovery and co-led by investigators at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. The researchers demonstrated that the drug abatacept reduced...

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Health workers sought for hydroxychloroquine study

Apr. 23, 2020—Health care workers at Vanderbilt University Medical Center at high risk of exposure to COVID-19 can participate in a randomized, controlled clinical trial testing the effectiveness of the drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) in preventing infection.

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Balko lands Mary Kay Foundation grant for breast cancer research

Dec. 5, 2019—Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center's Justin Balko, PharmD, PhD, has received a $100,000 research grant from the Mary Kay Foundation.

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Encephalitis identified as rare toxicity of immunotherapy treatment

Jul. 22, 2019—Researchers are chronicling rare but serious toxicities that may occur with immune checkpoint inhibitors, the most widely prescribed class of immunotherapies.

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Cancer Center investigators awarded Komen grants

Oct. 11, 2018—Four Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) investigators have received financial support from Susan G. Komen for breast cancer research.

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Study seeks to boost breast tumor immune response

Feb. 8, 2018—Immunotherapy, which harnesses the power of the immune system, is one of the most promising forms of cancer therapy and has been shown to work well against some types of cancer.

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Breast cancer program lands new research grants

Mar. 23, 2017—Several investigators in Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center’s (VICC) Breast Cancer Program have received grant awards to support translational research that may improve disease outcomes for patients.

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V Foundation grants bolster cancer initiatives

Nov. 17, 2016—Two Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center (VICC) investigators have earned grant awards from The V Foundation for Cancer Research, continuing the foundation’s support for innovative cancer research initiatives at VICC.

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Study details rare heart risk of certain cancer therapies

Nov. 3, 2016—Combination therapy using two approved immunotherapy drugs for cancer treatment may cause rare and sometimes fatal cardiac side effects linked to an unexpected immune response. In a study led by Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) investigators and published in the Nov. 3 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers describe two cases of...

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Precision medicine already changing cancer treatment strategies

May. 26, 2016—The ability to test patients’ cancers for individual differences, mainly at the genetic level, and to make treatment decisions based on those differences is the hallmark of precision medicine, and Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) is among the leaders of this new approach to diagnosis and treatment.

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Study explores how some breast cancers resist treatment

Apr. 21, 2016—A targeted therapy for triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC), the most aggressive form of breast cancer, has shown potential promise in a recently published study. TNBC is the only type of breast cancer for which there are no currently approved targeted therapies.

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