Favorable results have led to crizotinib gaining approval for the treatment of advanced stage ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) in Japan, the United States, Canada, and several other countries in Europe and Asia.
Now, the identification of an effective therapy for ALK-positive NSCLC places great emphasis on rapid, accurate, and cost-effective way to find patients with this subtype of lung cancer. A recent study published in the January 2013 issue of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer's (IASLC) Journal of Thoracic Oncology, concludes immunohistochemistry (IHC) is a reliable screening tool for identification of ALK rearrangement.
Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) is the current standard method to detect ALK rearrangement. However, FISH is not readily available as a routine method of pathology practice in most laboratories because it is time consuming and requires advanced technical and professional expertise. In contrast, IHC is relatively inexpensive, faster, and is perfectly adapted for routine practice by academics and most community hospitals.
Researchers screened 377 stage I or II NSCLC cases, diagnosed between 1978 and 2002. Tissue microarray results were available on 377 cases by IHC and 273 cases by FISH. Eleven cases were positive or possibly positive by either IHC or FISH, and three cases were positive or possibly positive by both methods.
They found, "that all cases exhibiting ALK rearrangement demonstrated adenocarcinoma histology." Their results report a sensitivity of 100 percent and high specificity with the IHC with no false-negative results. While researchers acknowledge that further study involving a larger cohort is recommended, IHC is a valid screening test.The lead author of this work is Dr. Chris M.J. Conklin. Co-authors include IASLC members Dr. Janessa Laskin, Dr. Kenneth Craddock, Cherry Have, Dr. Christian Couture and Dr. Diana Ionescu.
Kristal Griffith | EurekAlert!
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Plants and algae use the enzyme Rubisco to fix carbon dioxide, removing it from the atmosphere and converting it into biomass. Algae have figured out a way to increase the efficiency of carbon fixation. They gather most of their Rubisco into a ball-shaped microcompartment called the pyrenoid, which they flood with a high local concentration of carbon dioxide. A team of scientists at Princeton University, the Carnegie Institution for Science, Stanford University and the Max Plank Institute of Biochemistry have unravelled the mysteries of how the pyrenoid is assembled. These insights can help to engineer crops that remove more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere while producing more food.
A warming planet
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
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