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New cancer 'vaccine' completely wipes out tumors in mice -- human trials are on way

Published: Friday, February 02, 2018 @ 12:42 PM

New Cancer ‘Vaccine’ Wipes Out Tumors In Mice, Human Trials Next

Human trials are set to commence after a potential cancer vaccine was shown to eliminate all traces of tumors in mice.

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Researchers at the Stanford University School of Medicine injected small amounts of two immune-stimulating agents directly into the mice's solid tumors, resulting in the complete obliteration of cancerous cells, according to the medical university's news center.

"When we use these two agents together, we see the elimination of tumors all over the body," Dr. Ronald Levy, professor of oncology, said. "This approach bypasses the need to identify tumor-specific immune targets and doesn't require wholesale activation of the immune system or customization of a patient's immune cells."

The researchers published their findings this week in the academic journal  Science Translational Medicine, claiming to have "developed a practical strategy for immunotherapy of cancer."
Tested in some 90 mice, the technique eliminated cancer in 87. Immunoenhancing agents were injected directly into the rodents' tumors, triggering a local T-cell immune response and going on to attack cancer throughout the entire body.

Levy and his colleagues believe the local application of very small amounts of the agents could serve as a rapid and even relatively inexpensive cancer therapy. They also think it is unlikely to cause the adverse side effects often seen with bodywide immune stimulation.

"This is a very targeted approach," Levy said. "Only the tumor that shares the protein targets displayed by the treated site is affected. We're attacking specific targets without having to identify exactly what proteins the T-cells are recognizing." Seen as a leader in the field of cancer immunotherapy, through which doctors attempt to use the immune system to attack cancer, Levy's research previously led to the development of rituximab, a groundbreaking anticancer treatment for humans.

"All of these immunotherapy advances are changing medical practice," Levy explained.

Levy said the procedure in his new experiment "uses a one-time application of very small amounts of two agents to stimulate the immune cells only within the tumor itself."

"In the mice, we saw amazing, bodywide effects, including the elimination of tumors all over the animal," he said.

Different from other available treatments, this technique foregoes the need to infiltrate an animal's entire immune system or use samples from its body, according to the New York Daily News. Some existing cancer therapies, such as T-cell treatment used to combat lymphoma and leukemia, remove a patient's immune cells from the body and then genetically alter them to fight cancerous cells before being reintroduced into the body.

That method is not only costly, it also involves a long treatment process, not to mention rough side effects. Levy's newly developed method would be much simpler, if it works in humans.

The Stanford team is now looking for about 15 people with lymphoma to test the vaccine in a clinical trial, according to Newsweek. Optimistic about the possibilities, Levy said that he believes a wide variety of cancers could be treated in a similar way.

"I don't think there's a limit to the type of tumor we could potentially treat, as long as it has been infiltrated by the immune system," he said.

Read the full study at stm.sciencemag.org.

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Fiat Chrysler recalls 4.8 million vehicles over cruise control issue

Published: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 11:52 AM

Fiat Chrysler is recalling 4.8 million vehicles over an issue that could prevent drivers from turning off cruise control. Models affected include the Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV, model years 2014-2018.
Joe Raedle, Getty Images
Fiat Chrysler is recalling 4.8 million vehicles over an issue that could prevent drivers from turning off cruise control. Models affected include the Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV, model years 2014-2018.(Joe Raedle, Getty Images)

Fiat Chrysler is recalling 4.8 million vehicles that could prevent drivers from turning off the cruise control function.

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The cruise control could become dangerous when an affected car accelerates under cruise control, like when trying to climb up a hill, Fiat Chrysler officials told CNN. This could cause the car to become locked in cruise control, and the driver might not be able to tap the breaks or hit the designated switch to turn it off.

One incident related to this issue has been reported to Fiat Chrysler, but there have been no reported injuries. 

Affected car owners are told to stop using the cruise control function immediately until the vehicle can be repaired, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) stated in a press release.

If this issue happens while driving, the NHTSA said drivers might be able to stop the vehicle by pushing the break pedal and placing the vehicle in park once it is stopped. Drivers could also shift the transmission to neutral or forcefully apply the manual break and place the car in park once it has stopped. 

Fiat Chrysler officials are asking owners of the recalled vehicles to bring them to a dealership for a software update.

The models covered under the recall include:

• 2015-17 Chrysler 200 sedan

• 2014-18 Chrysler 300 sedan

• 2014-18 Dodge Charger sedan 

• 2014-18 Dodge Durango SUV 

• 2014-18 Dodge Journey crossover 

• 2014-18 Jeep Cherokee SUV 

• 2014-18 Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV 

• 2014-18 Ram 2500 pickup 

• 2014-18 Ram 3500 cab chassis 

• 2014-18 Ram 3500 pickup 

• 2014-18 Ram 4500/5500 cab chassis

• 2014-19 Ram 1500 pickup 

• 2015-18 Dodge Challenger coupe 

• 2017-18 Chrysler Pacifica minivan 

• 2018 Jeep Wrangler 

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22-year-old uses ‘odd’ strategy to win $2 million on lotto scratch off

Published: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 11:57 AM

A 22-year-old won $2 million on a Diamond Dazzler scratch-off ticket. (Photo: Michigan Lottery)
A 22-year-old won $2 million on a Diamond Dazzler scratch-off ticket. (Photo: Michigan Lottery)

A 22-year-old man whose strategy is to only play odd-numbered scratch off tickets, won $2 million from the Michigan Lottery’s Diamond Dazzler game.

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The player, who wanted to remain anonymous, took the lump-sum payout of $1.3 million Wednesday, according to lottery officials

“Winning this much money at my age gives me endless opportunities if I’m smart about how I spend it, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do,” he said.

The win came from the player’s odd strategy. 

He walked into the Busatti Party Store and asked the clerk what number the ticket was on his favorite game, the Diamond Dazzler. 

“Twenty-one,” she replied. 

He had to have it. He scratched the $20 ticket off in the store and saw it was a winner. He looked at the clerk then at his friend who was with him before running out to his car.

He plans to buy a new vehicle and invest the rest. 

More than $72 million in prizes remain, including two $2 million top prizes.

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Rape victim wins $1 billion verdict in civil suit against security company

Published: Thursday, May 24, 2018 @ 2:11 AM

Rape Victim Wins $1 Billion Verdict Against Security Company

A Georgia rape victim was awarded a $1 billion settlement verdict Tuesday by a Clayton County jury in a civil lawsuit, according to court documents.

Hope Cheston, who is now 20 years old, sued a security company whose employee, Brandon Lamar Zachary, was convicted of rape and sentenced to 20 years in prison. The rape occurred in October 2012 when Cheston was 14. 

Hope Cheston, who is now 20 years old, sued a security company whose employee, Brandon Lamar Zachary (pictured), was convicted of rape and sentenced to 20 years in prison.(Clayton County Sheriff's Office)

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s policy is to not name rape victims, but Cheston has chosen to speak out after the verdict. 

“Sexual assault is sexual assault,” Cheston said at a news conference Wednesday. “It’s not right, and it needs to be punished.”

She said the verdict was a pleasant surprise that validates her struggles and emotional pain.

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“For the longest (time), I thought it would be pushed under the rug and no longer mattered ... but come to find out 12 strangers feel like what I went through and my story and how I feel six years later is worth a billion dollars,” Cheston said.

She originally filed the civil suit against the apartment complex, HACC Pointe South Inc., the property management company, Hammond Residential Group, Inc., and the security company, Crime Prevention Agency Inc.

HACC Pointe South Inc. and Hammond Residential Group Inc. were eventually dismissed from the suit.

The State Court of Clayton County ruled in Cheston’s favor against the security company, handing her the huge settlement, according to a statement from her attorney. 

“This is a huge victory for women,” Cheston’s attorney, Chris Stewart, said at the news conference.

Stewart said Crime Prevention Agency Inc. has since changed its name to International Security Agency Inc., which he said has prompted a subsequent lawsuit.

“You can’t change names or try to hide from your responsibility,” Stewart said.

Zachary, who is now 28, was arrested on charges of rape, statutory rape and child molestation, according to the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office. 

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Parents remember son killed in car crash on the way to take his final exam

Published: Friday, May 25, 2018 @ 10:22 AM

Caleb Keller died in a car accident on the way to take a final exam . (Photo: WSBTV.com)
Caleb Keller died in a car accident on the way to take a final exam . (Photo: WSBTV.com)

The family of a Floyd County high school senior is planning his funeral just days before they were planning to see him graduate.

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His family told Channel 2's Matt Johnson they're overwhelmed by the support they've received.

Blue ribbons are everywhere near Model High School, even on the school itself, to honor Caleb Keller, 18.

"He was a very special kid," said his mother, April Helton. "He said, 'I'm going to make it, I'm going to walk across that stage,' and we are all just so excited."

But four days before graduation, the high school senior died in a two-car crash on the way to take his finals.

Floyd County authorities said Keller crashed his car into another truck at Mango Road and Wayside Road at around 10:30 a.m.

He died Tuesday morning.

His family said he was on his way to school to take his finals, but the road was wet.

"The road right there is a gravel road, and it had washed, and he just lost control," said his father, Clint Helton.

His family said the community has placed hundreds of blue ribbons for Keller all across the county, including some at his high school.

They are thankful and hopeful that Caleb's friends can still enjoy the graduation ceremony.

"We want this to be bright and happy for them because that's what Caleb would want," April said.

His parents want everyone to know through their pain and their heartbreak, they feel incredibly proud of their beloved son.

"Even though Caleb's not going to be there to walk with them, he's just as much a part, and he's there," April said.

The other driver involved in the crash was released from a hospital with minor injuries.

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