Scientists are uncovering clues that may help explain why breast cancer therapies fail in some women. They have pinpointed two proteins that are missing in about 15% of breast cancer tumors. Without these proteins, drugs like chemotherapy and Herceptin don't work. Researchers at University of North Carolina Chapel Hill say the findings could lead to tests for the proteins so doctors can make sure their patients are getting the right therapy. Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women. The American Cancer Society estimates that in 2004 over 200,000 American women will be diagnosed with breast cancer and 40,000 will die from the disease.
Take advantage of the summer fruits in season because a new study suggests the sweet produce may help protect your sight. A study of more than 100,000 people found eating 3 servings of fruit a day helped cut the risk of age related macular degeneration by 36%. The disease is the leading cause of blindness among the elderly. In a related study, researchers say long term use of cholesterol lowering drugs called statins help reduce the risk of another sight stealing disease, glaucoma, in patients with heart disease and high cholesterol. Both studies are published in the Archives of Opthalmology, a journal of the American Medical Association.
There's more evidence that suggests where you store your fat can impact your health. An 11-year study of 300 people finds those who carried extra pounds in their belly were four times more likely to develop high blood pressure compared to study subjects with trimmer waistlines. It's believed that storing fat in the abdomen may hurt nearby vital organs like the heart. Researchers say the finding helps confirm that the belt line bulge is definitely a risk factor for a number of health problems. The study was conducted by the University of Washington in Seattle and is published in the Annals of Internal Medicine. About 1 in 3 of the study participants developed hypertension. Researchers used a CT scan to measure fat in many locations, such as fat inside the abdomen, fat just under the skin of the abdomen, total body fat, and waist size.