Saturday, April 18, 2015
Poorer outcomes for African-American women with estrogen-receptor positive (ER+) breast cancer, compared with European-American patients, appears to be due, in part, to a strong survival mechanism within the cancer cells
Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center investigators report that breast tumors from African-American patients show reduced sensitivity to tamoxifen, a leading treatment for ER+ breast cancer, caused by increased activation of the "unfolded protein response," or UPR. If UPR is activated due to stress within a cancer cell from anti-cancer treatment, "it can switch on a pro-survival pathway, allowing tumor cells to hunker down and wait out the attack," says the study's lead investigator, Ayesha Shajahan-Haq, PhD, an oncology research assistant professor. "From our gene analyses, we found increased activation of the UPR pro-survival pathway in African-American patients, compared with other patients, along with increased activity of a number of genes associated with that pathway," says Shajahan-Haq. "This can lead to increased resistance to common therapies." About 70% of all breast cancers are ER+, which means that they depend on estrogen to grow. In many of these cancers, treatment involves preventing estrogen from reaching the cancer cell. However, about 50% of treated tumors develop treatment resistance. African-American women with this breast cancer subtype, treated the same way as European-American women, have worse progression-free and overall survival - for reasons that have not been understood. "Our findings offer a partial understanding of racial differences within ER+ breast cancers," Shajahan-Haq says. "We demonstrate both increased resistance to anti-cancer therapy in African-American patients as well as the reason that resistance occurs."
One possible explanation is that it may have evolved as a response to arsenic and lead poisoning of Iron Age metal workers.
Black-on-black violence: Black South Africans are savagely attacking and threatening black immigrants from other parts of Africa
Liberals will probably just blame this on apartheid like they do with everything else that goes wrong in South Africa.
Friday, April 17, 2015
African-American men in general are at higher risk of prostate cancer, including being at a higher risk of death from the disease - but why this is has not been clearly defined
An analysis now suggests a relationship with obesity. Higher BMI in the study was associated with prostate cancer in all men, but African-Americans were at greater danger; the chances of these men getting prostate cancer increased fourfold for obesity compared with normal weight. The relationship between obesity and prostate cancer is complex - but the risk is clearly higher in African-Americans, the study finds. The analysis covers 3,398 African-American and 22,673 non-Hispanic white men who had taken part in the SELECT trial. They formed a prospective study cohort who had originally been recruited to test whether selenium and vitamin E had a preventive role against prostate cancer - but they gave obesity-related data in the process. Any men who had not yielded data on body mass index (BMI) and other relevant variables were left out of this analysis. Prostate cancer incidence was the outcome tracked and has been analyzed for its relationship to obesity and race by Wendy Barrington, PhD, of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, WA. Dr. Barrington - assistant professor in psychosocial and community health at the University of Washington School of Nursing - accessed data on total numbers of prostate cancer diagnoses, and which of these were low-grade or high-grade. Grading had been performed in the pathology lab on biopsy samples - to reach a Gleason score, which below 7 means low-grade prostate cancer, or high-grade at 7 and greater. Key among her findings was that the risk of developing prostate cancer in the African-American men who were obese approached four times the risk of African-American men who had normal weight. Using BMI, the analysis found a 28% risk of getting prostate cancer for the African-American men who had a BMI below 25 and a 103% risk for those with a BMI of 35 or more, representing obesity. By contrast, "obesity was not associated with risk of total prostate cancer" among the non-Hispanic white men in the study, the authors conclude. Dr. Barrington confirmed the main message of the findings. As corresponding and primary author, she said: "The main take-home point for practicing physicians is to recognize that obesity has a different relationship to prostate cancer risk in African-American compared to non-Hispanic white men."
A third black man has been arrested in what Bay County Sheriff Frank McKeithen says is "one of the most disgusting, repulsive, sickening things" he has ever seen
George Davon Kennedy has been arrested in Dekalb County, Georgia, over the public gang rape of a woman on a public beach in Panama City, Florida, during spring break. Police say that the black Middle Tennessee State student, who was arrested on a charge of sexual assault by multiple perpetrators, took part in the attack and was also seen encouraging others in video of the incident. Two other men have been arrested and a fourth person seen in the video is being sought, investigators say. The two suspects arrested earlier are students at Alabama's Troy University, and Kennedy appears to have no connection to them "other than being there on the beach together," a sheriff's office spokesman said. Investigators suspect that the woman in the video was drugged, and the sheriff says that this is not an isolated incident. He says that multiple other videos of women being assaulted on local beaches amid hundreds of people have been recovered. "Our culture and our society and our young people have got to the point where obviously this is acceptable somewhere," he says. "I will tell you it is not acceptable in Bay County."
Neuroscientists who studied the brain scans of nearly 1,100 children and young adults nationwide from ages 3 to 20 found that the surface area of the cerebral cortex was linked to family income. They discovered that the brains of children in families that earned less than $25,000 a year had surface areas 6% smaller than those whose families earned $150,000 or more. The poor children also scored lower on average on a battery of cognitive tests. The region of the brain in question handles language, memory, spatial skills and reasoning, all important to success in school and beyond. In another study, a team led by neuroscientist John Gabrieli of MIT found differences in the brain’s cortical thickness between low-income and higher-income teenagers. The study linked that difference for the first time to standardized test scores: 57% of the poor children scored proficient in math and reading tests given annually in Massachusetts, compared with 91% of the higher-income students.
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
A Latino murdered an 18-month-old boy in his care just because he couldn't handle a common hazard of diaper-changing
Martin Alvarado Jr., 23, flew into a rage and beat Edwin Eli O'Reilly, his girlfriend's son, to death after the toddler peed on him while he was changing his diaper. The Cook County medical examiner's office says that the boy died of multiple blunt-force injuries and the death has been ruled a homicide by child abuse. Alvarado was arrested after police and paramedics called to the home found the unresponsive child; he has been charged with first-degree murder. A spokeswoman for the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services says that the agency has had previous contact with the family, and one of Edwin's siblings has been taken into protective custody. Alvarado has confessed to killing the child.
Monday, April 13, 2015
Just 49% of college-educated black women marry a well-educated man (i.e., with at least some post-secondary education), compared to 84% of college-educated white women, according to an analysis of PSID data by Yale sociologist Vida Maralani
Young white women — aged between 25 and 35 — are the most likely to have at least a BA (37%), followed by white men (29%), black women (23%) and black men (16%). Marriage rates are lower among black women compared to white women, even among those with a college education. The proportion of black college graduates aged 25 to 35 who have never married is 60%, compared to 38% for white college-educated women. White women with college degrees are more than twice as likely as their black counterparts (29% v 13%) to be married to someone of equal or greater educational status. Married, black college graduates are much more likely to have a husband with a lower level of education, compared to whites of a similar background (58% v 48%). Married black women with at least a college degree are less likely than their white counterparts to be in the top household income quintile (27% compared to 35%) and more likely to be in a lower income quintile. In fact, black college graduates are equally likely to be in the fourth income quintile as in the top quintile.