Radiation therapy (RT) has been the most important treatment modality with curative potential in treating patients with cancer of the nasopharynx, the part of the pharynx that lies above the soft palate. This is due to several factors: (1) undifferentiated carcinoma, or tumour cells with no resemblance at all to normal glandular or surface lining cells, is quite radiosensitive and is more common than squamous cell carcinoma; (2) more than two-thirds of the patients present with cervical lymph node metastases at time of diagnosis; (3) about half of the patients present with bilateral cervical metastases; (4) retropharyngeal lymph node, which is difficult to remove surgically, is frequently involved at rather earlier stages.
Local control and survival rates have been improved by increasing the radiation dose since 1950’s, and favorable 10-year survival rates ranging from 65 to 77 percent were achievable in patients with early stage disease by high dose radiation therapy. However, the long-term survival rates in those with high T or N stages are not satisfactory because of either poor local control or frequent distant metastases. The addition of systemic chemotherapy to high dose RT has been widely tried in an effort to overcome these limitations.
Three sequences of combining chemotherapy RT have been tried: chemotherapy before surgery followed by radiation therapy; adjuvant chemotherapy after RT; and concurrent radiochemotherapy. Based on several phase III trials, positive role of chemotherapy that was added to RT in locally advanced nasopharynx cancer was proved, and the concurrent fashion was regarded, if not conclusive, as the most effective strategy.
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Researchers from the University of Hamburg in Germany, in collaboration with colleagues from the University of Aarhus in Denmark, have synthesized a new superconducting material by growing a few layers of an antiferromagnetic transition-metal chalcogenide on a bismuth-based topological insulator, both being non-superconducting materials.
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Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
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19.01.2017 | Ecology, The Environment and Conservation
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19.01.2017 | Studies and Analyses