Research Updates: Colon and head and neck cancers
|Today’s Research Updates describe two new findings for colon and head and neck cancers.
June 5, 2020
Colon cancer research update
A new CCS-funded study has uncovered a potential way to reduce colon cancer risk in people with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). People with IBD experience chronic inflammation in their colon, which is one of the biggest risk factors for developing colon cancer. With the support of a CCS Impact Grant, Dr Alberto Martin and his team found that during inflammation, gut bacteria produce chemicals that damage the DNA of colon cells, triggering them to become cancerous. The researchers also showed that antioxidants like vitamin C helped to reduce DNA damage and tumour formation. While this study was done in animal models, it points to antioxidants as a potential new treatment to help prevent colon cancer in people with IBD.
Head and neck cancer research update
A new tool developed with CCS support has shown promising results in helping head and neck cancer survivors live fuller lives. These survivors often live with significant and complex treatment side effects and have high levels of unmet rehabilitation needs. To address these concerns, Dr Sara McEwen and her team created and tested a rehabilitation planning consult to improve access to rehabilitation services. During the consult, healthcare providers work with survivors to determine their rehabilitation goals and make a plan to meet those goals.
With funding from a CCS Innovation Grant, Dr McEwen and her team found that the rehabilitation planning consult had large, positive effects on goal performance and satisfaction. Based on these successful early results, the researchers are conducting a phase II clinical trial to compare their rehabilitation planning consult with the current standard of care to determine whether it can improve the quality of life for people with head and neck cancers.