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Cancer Research UK joins forces with US scientists to detect ‘undetectable’ cancers

A new research alliance with the US is setting out radical new strategies to detect the very earliest stages of cancer, in an effort to improve early detection of the disease. According to The Guardian, £55 million will be invested in the project, bringing together experts from six research institutes across the UK and US. Read more about the ambitious alliance in our press release.

Entertainment TV ads could be fuelling childhood obesity

According to The Telegraph, just one episode of Britain’s Got Talent could cause a child to eat an extra 50 calories a day thanks to the junk food advertising around the show. We’ve spoken before to a former junk food advertising executive about some of the tactics used to entice children. And we’re calling for a 9pm watershed on adverts for unhealthy foods to help curb the rise in childhood obesity.

Sunscreen could protect you for 10 times longer in the future

Scientists say a sunscreen which could last 10 times longer than today’s average sun protection could be possible. And according to the Independent, a sun-protecting protein found in the leaves of plants could be key to absorbing harmful Ultraviolet (UV) light. For now we know the best way to protect your skin from the sun is to regularly reapply sun cream, spend time in the shade and cover up with clothes.

Scientists developing potential new treatment for children with brain tumours

Researchers are developing a drug that could be used to treat children living with a currently untreatable form of brain tumour. The work, which has been funded in part by the charity Abbie’s Army, began with scientists identifying a faulty gene that could be driving this type of cancer. According to The Guardian, Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG) affects 30-40 children aged between five and 10 every year.

Chest x-rays miss nearly a quarter of lung cancers

The Sun reports that up to 23 in 100 lung tumours are not being picked up by x-ray scans. This has led some experts to suggest that doctors should use CT scans instead, but as the latest study didn’t compare the two techniques, we can’t say for sure if CT scans would be any better. Guidelines say all doctors should be aware of the possibility of false negative results and refer people with ongoing symptoms for further tests.

Why many women in Pakistan could be missing out on breast cancer treatment

BBC News explores the cultural and social taboos that could mean some women in Pakistan don’t get treatment for their breast cancer. Pakistan has the highest rate of breast cancer in Asia, with around 17,000 women every year dying from the disease.

Cancer patients suffer in silence to save overworked NHS staff

A survey by Macmillan Cancer Support found two thirds of newly diagnosed cancer patients are not getting the medical attention they need. The survey suggests patients aren’t asking for advice about side-effects because they don’t want to bother overworked NHS staff. The results were picked up by The Telegraph. 

Tobacco companies could be undermining packaging laws

According to a report in the British Medical Journal, tobacco companies have been stretching the boundaries of plain packaging laws by introducing marketing gimmicks like bevelled edges, and ‘pro-seal’ closing mechanisms to make their cigarettes stand out from rival brands. The Guardian has more.

Rise in pancreatic cancer may be linked to obesity

Expert say a 10% rise in cases of pancreatic and bowel cancer worldwide may be linked to an increase in the number of people who are obese and have type 2 diabetes. Read the full story in the Mail Online.

Unravelling how colon cancer develops

New technology has allowed scientists to identify mutations linked to colon cancer development in healthy tissue. But while these DNA changes may be occurring more frequently than previously thought, most of the cells carrying mutations won’t go on to become cancerous. Scientists hope to use this information to understand more how healthy cells become cancerous, as the Independent explains.

And finally…

A woman with breast cancer says a thermal imaging camera at an Edinburgh museum led to her diagnosis after revealing an abnormal ‘hot spot’ on her chest. But despite this good news story, so far thermography hasn’t been found to be an effective way to detect breast cancer and isn’t an approved method of diagnosing breast cancer on the NHS. The Mail Online reports more on this story.

Scarlett Sangster is a writer for PA Media Group