Press Releases 2015

December 15 2015

UNM Cancer Center Scientists Look Inside Cells to Study Blood Disorders

New DOD grant will support research using new sophisticated microscope methods to learn about cellular protein quality control

Myeloproliferative neoplasms are slowly-progressing but very serious blood cancers in which the bone marrow makes too many red blood cells, white blood cells or platelets. In many people, these disorders can be traced to a mutation in a gene called JAK2 and they respond well to certain drugs. But other [...]

December 09 2015

Nutritionist Helps People to Keep Eating During Their Cancer Treatment

Changing tastes and difficulty in swallowing can threaten a person’s ability to complete cancer treatment

Ernestine Trujillo, MS, RD, LD, plays an important role in helping people through their cancer treatment: she helps them to eat. Eating keeps their strength up so that they can get through treatment. But eating during cancer treatment isn’t always easy. Trujillo, a Senior Clinical Nutritionist at the University of [...]

December 01 2015

National Grant Supports Regional Cancer Health Disparity Research

UNM Cancer Center will be the regional hub for research on how cancer affects different populations

Cancer affects everyone, but it doesn’t affect everyone equally. For example, Hispanic and African American women are more frequently diagnosed with, and die from, cervical cancer. And Asians and Pacific Islanders are diagnosed with liver cancer more frequently than other racial or ethnic groups. The National Cancer Institute created the [...]

November 12 2015

New Device Makes Breast Cancer Surgery Easier

Antenna-like implant can be positioned up to a week in advance and responds to infrared signal during surgery

Breast cancer surgeons routinely face a dilemma: how to find tumors they cannot feel. Before going into the operating room they must use some method to locate them. Currently, the method they use requires a radiologist to insert a device into the woman’s breast. The insert targets the clip that [...]

November 03 2015

An Aggressive Treatment for an Aggressive Cancer

New clinical trial opens, uses the most advanced treatments to help people battle pancreas cancer

Pancreas cancer remains one of the deadliest cancers worldwide. In the United States, it accounts for only three percent of all diagnosed cancers but it causes almost seven percent of all cancer deaths. A pancreas cancer diagnosis often comes after age 50 and after the cancer has spread, making it [...]

October 29 2015

More than Math: Biostatistics Strengthens Cancer Research

Biostatisticians at UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center help scientists conduct clinical and basic research

In contrast to most people, Ji-Hyun Lee, DrPH, doesn’t find statistics difficult or boring. For her, statistics is fulfilling because it’s how she helps people fight cancer. “People think biostatistics is purely numbers,” Lee says, “but my work helps to improve patients’ care.” She recalls a visit to a hospital [...]

October 26 2015

Lung Cancer Specialist Brings New Treatments and Hope to New Mexicans

New UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center lung cancer specialist studies biology and treatment of lung cancer through basic and clinical research

This year, more than 158,000 Americans are expected to die from lung cancer. That’s a staggering number: it’s more than all the deaths expected from breast, prostate, colon, rectum, bladder and skin cancers combined. But this grim statistic only spurs Yanis Boumber, MD, PhD, to work harder toward a cure. [...]

October 19 2015

New iPhone App Helps Find Skin Cancer

‘Mole Mapper’ app gives users ability to measure and monitor moles, helps melanoma scientific research

WHAT: A new application for the Apple iPhone enables users to measure and track their moles by comparing their potential trouble spots over time. The ‘Mole Mapper’ app was developed using ResearchKit, an open source framework developed by Apple, Inc., and is free to download from the App Store. Scientists [...]

October 14 2015

A New Peptide-mimic Prevents Abnormal Blood Vessel Growth and May Lead to Anti-cancer Drugs

UNM Cancer Center scientists discovered and developed Vasotide™, a peptide-based drug candidate that keeps blood vessels from growing abnormally in eye diseases and cancers

An international research team led by scientists at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center discovered and developed a novel ligand peptide-mimic that inhibits abnormal overgrowth of blood vessels in retinal diseases and tumors. The discovery could lead to new drugs that keep cancers from growing. The team published a [...]

October 12 2015

Bikers Plan Ride to Increase Awareness of Breast Cancer

Turquoise Trail Ladies of Harley “Pink Your Ride — Motorcyclists Increasing Awareness” ride to end at UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center

WHAT: The Turquoise Trail Harley Owners’ Group plans to end its “Pink Your Ride — Motorcyclists Increasing Awareness (MIA)” ride at the University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center. WHY: Two sisters who belong to a HOG Chapter in Pennsylvania started the ride in 2012 to honor a third sister, [...]

October 05 2015

‘Lobos Love Pink’ Game Celebrates Breast Cancer Survivors

UNM Athletics, UNM Hospitals and UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center sponsor October 17 football game and health fair

To raise awareness of breast cancer, the University of New Mexico Lobos, UNM Hospitals and UNM Comprehensive Cancer Center are sponsoring the “Lobos Love Pink” Football game during October, Breast Cancer Awareness Month. In addition, they are sponsoring a health fair in the Howl Zone from 2:00 to 5:00 p.m. [...]

September 29 2015

State’s Largest Cancer Research Fundraiser slated for October 9 in Las Cruces

The Cowboys for Cancer Research annual fundraiser will take place for the 33rd time this year at the Las Cruces Convention Center

Cowboys for Cancer Research and the University of New Mexico Comprehensive Cancer Center will continue their 33-year tradition with this year’s annual fundraiser. To celebrate this long-standing event, Cowboys for Cancer Research will have music by The Yarbrough Band. New Mexico’s largest cancer fundraiser will take place October 9 at [...]

August 12 2015

UNM Cancer Center Awarded National Cancer Institute’s Highest Comprehensive Designation

Elite designation awarded to the state’s only NCI-designated cancer center, which serves patients and communities throughout New Mexico

The University of New Mexico Cancer Center (UNMCC) has been awarded the highest designation and rating in the United States for cancer treatment and research programs. It has received the National Cancer Institute’s “NCI Comprehensive Cancer Center” designation, identifying it as one of the leading cancer centers in the nation [...]

July 28 2015

UNM Cancer Center Scientists Discover that an Anti-Inflammatory Drug Acts Against Ovarian Cancer

New research published by UNM Cancer Center team shows already-approved drug to actively slow ovarian cancer and help women to live longer after surgery

What A team of scientists at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center published a research paper showing that a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) called ketorolac helped women with ovarian cancer to survive longer. Why Ovarian cancer has no symptoms. Often, it is discovered only after it has spread to [...]

June 23 2015

Promising New Drug Combo Offers Hope for People Battling Melanoma

UNM Cancer Center doctor publishes paper describing the ‘revolutionary therapy’ offered through clinical trials and presented for FDA approval

Summer inspires many people to think about their vacation plans; it makes Montaser Shaheen, MD, think about melanoma. Shaheen is a medical oncologist at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center. He and colleagues from around the country recently published a paper in the New England Journal of Medicine about [...]

June 15 2015

New Discovery Could Explain How Prostate Cancer Becomes Lethal

A paper published by UNM Cancer Center scientists and doctors describes the regulation of an unrecognized tumor suppressor in prostate cancer, opens up new diagnostic and therapeutic avenues

Understanding how a normal healthy cell turns into a cancerous one is our best bet yet for beating the disease. It will help better diagnose the cancer type, and enable the development of more effective, and less toxic therapies. But cells have evolved all sorts of sophisticated ways to become [...]

June 09 2015

Single-Dose HPV Vaccine Could Prevent Most Cervical Cancers

New research shows fewer doses of HPV vaccine protect against the two HPV types that cause most cervical cancers and may protect against other HPV types if only 2 doses are given 6 months apart

What A research paper published in The Lancet Oncology showed that a single dose of the human papillomavirus vaccine Cervarix® may prevent HPV-related cervical cancer. The paper presented data from two clinical trials, one sponsored by the National Cancer Institute and the other sponsored by GlaxoSmith Kline. Cervarix® is a [...]

June 08 2015

UNM Cancer Center Scientist Elected to National Steering Committee

Anita Kinney, PhD, RN, joins the NCI’s National Cancer Care Delivery Research Steering Committee

Anita Kinney, PhD, RN, at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center, has been elected to the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Care Delivery Research Steering Committee. The newly formed committee will guide nationwide research that studies how people get their cancer care and how well they fare as a result [...]

May 27 2015

Cancer Genetic Counselor Helps People to Look Beyond the Numbers

Second Certified Cancer Genetic Counselor at UNM Cancer Center helps people make sense of statistics and genetics

Cancer was the second leading cause of death in the United States in 2013 and the American Cancer Society expects almost 10,000 new cases in New Mexico this year. But statistics like these can’t answer personal cancer questions. “A lot of patients will come to me wanting to know: what’s [...]

April 20 2015

Clinical Trial Offers Patient ‘Best Shot’ at Fighting Kidney Cancer

New phase 3 clinical trial at UNM Cancer Center uses patients’ own cells,
teaches immune system to find and kill cancer cells throughout the body

About one year ago, Anne Holmes saw her doctor for a nagging pain in her upper arm. She learned that cancer cells from a massive tumor on her left kidney had invaded the long bone in her right arm and nearly ate through it, causing the pain. “I’m very lucky,” [...]

April 20 2015

UNM Cancer Center Opens International Clinical Trial for Personalized Kidney Cancer Vaccine

Latest generation vaccine uses cutting-edge technology and patient’s own cancer cells against difficult-to-treat cancer

The University of New Mexico Cancer Center recently enrolled its first patient in a phase 3 international clinical trial to test a personalized vaccine against metastatic kidney cancer. Kidney cancer has proven particularly difficult to treat with chemotherapy, and numerous attempts to create a kidney cancer vaccine have not improved [...]

April 09 2015

UNM Cancer Center Doctor Named One of AAHPM’s “Inspirational Leaders Under 40”

Esmé Finlay, MD, honored for exceptional work in palliative care

The American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine celebrated the outstanding work of 44 physicians throughout the country who practice palliative medicine. Esmé Finlay, MD, at the University of New Mexico Cancer Center is one of them. “I think that I didn’t really have even the words for palliative medicine [...]

February 12 2015

Art Show Features Stunning Pieces from Contemporary Artists and Mother Nature

“Art of Systems Biology and Nanoscience” event features stunning images of the cellular and molecular world, as well as avant-garde work of contemporary artists inspired by science and nature

Light is a principal tool of scientists working at the cellular and molecular scales. University of New Mexico and Los Alamos National Lab scientists are at the forefront of the newest technologies, revealing the hidden beauty of living cells and the molecules that provide the essentials of life. The goal [...]

February 09 2015

Charity Game Blurs Party Lines, Raises Money for UNM Cancer Center

New Mexico legislature supports UNM Cancer Center in annual “Hoops 4 Hope” Basketball game

“If anybody gets out of here without any broken bones or bloody noses, it’s a win,” says Representative Bill McCamley (D – Dona Ana). McCamley isn’t talking about the latest legislative session. He’s talking about last year’s “Hoops 4 Hope” basketball game in which he played. The game raises money [...]

January 28 2015

Innovative Program to Add New Segment to STEM Education Pipeline at UNM

UNM Cancer Center Scientist uses NCI CURE grant to reach underrepresented minority high school students

For Angela Wandinger-Ness, PhD, giving back to society and investing in the future are the same thing. “That was the hook,” she says. “If you’re going to be in academics, you’re there to do research and teaching and education.” So Wandinger-Ness combined her passion for science with her passion for [...]

January 15 2015

Breast Cancer Survivors to be Honored at “Lobos Love Pink” Basketball Game

Lobo Women’s basketball game raises awareness for breast cancer

The University of New Mexico Women’s Basketball team will generously pay tribute to the courageous women battling breast cancer in our state as they have year after year. Along with the support of UNM Cancer Center, UNM Hospitals and UNM Athletics, the Lady Lobos will face the University of Nevada, [...]

January 15 2015

Two UNM Cancer Center Physicians Named to National Clinical Trials Network Task Forces

UNM Cancer Center doctors lend their expertise on running clinical trials in the U.S.

Some women with breast cancer may be better off having less invasive and less toxic treatments. “But right now, we can’t identify them very well,” says breast cancer specialist Melanie Royce, MD, PhD. “The question is, how can we identify those patients so that we do not treat them with [...]