Two articles (summary + reflection or opinion)

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I need to read two articles then for each one I need to write:

1) Summary of the main Ideas of the article in your own words (5-7 sentences)

You need to under line the sentences that you like and summarize in the main article

2) Your reflection/opinion/commentary on the issues presented in the article what do you think about this topic?(5-7 sentences)

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Scientists Develop Single Blood Test That Detects Eight Common Cancers Click Image To Enlarge + S o u r c e: © i n ka o n e/ F ot o l i a . co m • • A research team headed by scientists at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center has developed a multianalyte blood test that can screen for eight common forms of cancer and help to identify the tumor location. The test, called CancerSEEK, identifies eight circulating protein biomarkers and a panel of mutations in 16 cancer genes. When tested on blood samples from just over 1000 cancer patients, the assay demonstrated a specificity of 99% and a sensitivity of 69% to 98% for the five types of cancer for which there is currently no screening test. Reporting on the work in Science, the researchers estimate that the CancerSEEK test could cost less than $500, which is “comparably lower” than other screening tests, such as colonoscopy, for single cancers. • "This test represents the next step in changing the focus of cancer research from late-stage disease to early disease, which I believe will be critical to reducing cancer deaths in the long term," says co-researcher Bert Vogelstein, M.D., co-director of the Ludwig Center for Cancer Genetics and Therapeutics, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Clayton Professor of Oncology, and Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator. • “The use of a combination of selected biomarkers for early detection has the potential to change the way we screen for cancer, and it is based on the same rationale for using combinations of drugs to treat cancers," adds Nickolas Papadopoulos, Ph.D., professor of oncology and pathology, who is senior author of the team’s paper, which is entitled “Detection and Localization of Surgically Resectable Cancer with a Multi-Analyte Blood Test.” • The eight cancers covered by CancerSEEK—ovarian, liver, stomach, pancreas, esophagus, colorectal, lung, and breast—together account for an estimated 360,000, or 60% of the cancer deaths in the U.S. in 2017. The only widely used blood test for early cancer detection involves measuring prostate-specific antigen (PSA), the authors note. Other approved tests for detecting cancer, including colonoscopy, mammography, and cervical cytology, are not blood-based. • CancerSEEK has been developed to address key requirements for a blood test for cancer, including high specificity to avoid putting patients through unnecessary follow-up procedures as a result of false positives and high enough sensitivity to identify the very low levels of genetic mutations in early-stage cancer patients. Another issue with liquid biopsies is the ability to identify the underlying tissue of origin. • “Because the same gene mutations drive multiple tumor types, liquid biopsies based on genomic analysis alone generally cannot identify the anatomical location of the primary tumor,” the authors write. In contrast, the CancerSEEK test “utilizes combined assays for genetic alterations and protein biomarkers and has the capacity not only to identify the presence of relatively early cancers but also to localize the organ of origin of these cancer.” • To develop CancerSEEK, the researchers initially looked at several hundred genes and 40 protein markers, but then narrowed down their panel to 16 genes and eight proteins. “…we searched for the minimum number of short amplicons that would allow us to detect at least one driver gene mutation in each of the eight tumor types evaluated,” the researchers write. • Circulating tumor DNA mutations can be highly specific markers for cancer, explains Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine researcher and M.D., Ph.D. student Joshua Cohen, who is the paper's first author. “To capitalize on this inherent specificity, we sought to develop a small yet robust panel that could detect at least one mutation in the vast majority of cancers." • The scientists optimized the panel by working to the concept of diminishing returns. "The more DNA bases you assay, the more mutations you are capable of finding, but eventually you reach a point of diminishing returns," explains Cohen. "We designed our test to reflect this point of diminishing returns, including the DNA markers that were useful to detecting the cancers and eliminating those that did not add benefit." The result was a “small but robust” panel of highly selective DNA markers. “In fact, keeping the mutation panel small is essential to minimize falsepositive results and keep such screening tests affordable." • CancerSEEK demonstrated a median sensitivity of 70% when tested on 1005 patients diagnosed with one of the eight cancers. Patients all had Stage I–III nonmetastatic disease. Test sensitivity ranged from 98% for ovarian cancer to 33% for breast cancer. A trial of CancerSEEK on 812 healthy controls produced just seven false-positive results, although the authors point out that it’s also possible that one or more of the control individuals may have harbored a cancer that hadn’t yet been diagnosed. • One of the most important attributes of a screening test is the ability to detect cancers at relatively early stages, the author point out. The CancerSEEK test demonstrated a median sensitivity of 73% for the most common stage evaluated (Stage II), 78% for Stage III cancers, and lower 43% for Stage I cancers. The sensitivity for the earliest stage cancers (Stage I) was highest for liver cancer (100%) and lowest for esophageal cancer (20%). • The researchers also wanted to be able to use the test results to predict the site of a tumor. “One limitation of liquid biopsies is their inability to determine the cancer type in patients who test positive, which poses challenges for clinical follow-up,” they note. The team developed a supervised machine learning approach to predict the underlying cancer type in patients with positive test results. "A novelty of our classification method is that it combines the probability of observing various DNA mutations together with the levels of several proteins in order to make the final call," explains Christian Tomasetti, Ph.D., associate professor of oncology and biostatistics, who developed the algorithm. • The algorithm took into account the circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) and protein biomarker levels as well as the patient’s gender. When applied to the cancer patients who scored positive with a CancerSEEK test, and without any clinical information, the algorithm correctly localized the source of the cancer to two anatomic sites in 83% of patients, and was accurate down to a single organ in a median of 63% of patients. “The accuracy of prediction varied with tumor type; it was highest for colorectal cancers and lowest for lung cancers,” the authors write. • “Our study lays the conceptual and practical foundation for a single, multi-analyte blood test for cancers of many types,” the authors conclude. "This has the potential to substantially impact patients,” states Anne Marie Lennon, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of medicine, surgery, and radiology, clinical director of gastroenterology, and director of the Multidisciplinary Pancreatic Cyst Program. “Earlier detection provides many ways to improve outcomes for patients. Optimally, cancers would be detected early enough that they could be cured by surgery alone, but even cancers that are not curable by surgery alone will respond better to systemic therapies when there is less advanced disease." • “Many of the most promising cancer treatments we have today only benefit a small minority of cancer patients, and we consider them major breakthroughs. If we are going to make progress in early cancer detection, we have to begin looking at it in a more realistic way, recognizing that no test will detect all cancers," adds Prof. Vogelstein Paragraph 1- Summary of the main Ideas of the article in your own words (50%of your grade) Only 5-7 sentences Paragraph 2- Your reflection/opinion/commentary on the issues presented in the article what do you think about this topic?(50%of your grade) Only 5-7 sentences Stems Cells Made into Relay Cells for Sense of Touch For the first time, human sensory interneurons—the cells that communicate the sense of touch in the central nervous system—have been derived from stem cells. In clinical applications, stem cell–derived sensory interneurons could restore feeling in paralyzed patients, potentially complementing stem cell–derived motor neurons, which are being developed to restore coordinated movement. "The field has for a long time focused on making people walk again," said Samantha J. Butler, Ph.D., a researcher at the University of California, Los Angeles. As the senior author of a new study describing the generation of stem cell–derived sensory interneurons, Dr. Butler took the opportunity to note that while significant progress has been made in the development of stem cell–derived motor neurons, protocols for generating stem cell–derived sensory interneurons have been lacking. “Making people feel again doesn't have quite the same ring,” she commented. “But to walk, you need to be able to feel and to sense your body in space; the two processes really go hand in glove.” Dr. Butler and colleagues have developed a protocol that can generate sensory interneurons from either human embryonic stem cells (hESCs) or human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs). Protocol details appeared January 11 in the journal Stem Cell Reports, in an article entitled “Deriving Dorsal Spinal Sensory Interneurons from Human Pluripotent Stem Cells.” “Two developmentally relevant factors, retinoic acid in combination with bone morphogenetic protein 4, can be used to generate three classes of sensory INs [interneurons]: the proprioceptive dI1s, the dI2s, and mechanosensory dI3s,” wrote the article’s authors. DI1 sensory interneurons give people proprioception—a sense of where their body is in space—and dI3 sensory interneurons enable them to feel a sense of pressure. Whether they tried reprogramming hESCs or hiPSCs, the researchers found that their protocol yielded the same mixture of sensory interneurons. This reprogramming method creates stem cells that can create any cell type while also maintaining the genetic code of the person from which they originated. The ability to create sensory interneurons with a patient's own reprogrammed cells—with hiPSCs derived from differentiated adult cells—holds significant potential for the creation of a cell-based treatment that restores the sense of touch without immune suppression. In the current study, which builds on work Dr. Butler’s team conducted with sensory interneurons from chicken embryos, the signaling molecules that were used worked only with neural progenitors in the correct competence state. The authors of the current study emphasized that the competence state of hESC-derived spinal progenitors changes over time. Dr. Butler hopes to be able to create one type of interneuron at a time, which would make it easier to define the separate roles of each cell type and allow scientists to start the process of using these cells in clinical applications for people who are paralyzed. However, her research group has not yet identified how to make stem cells yield entirely dI1 or entirely dI3 cells—perhaps because another signaling pathway is involved, she said. The researchers also have yet to determine the specific recipe of growth factors that would coax stem cells to create other types of sensory interneurons. The group is currently implanting the new dI1 and dI3 sensory interneurons into the spinal cords of mice to understand whether the cells integrate into the nervous system and become fully functional. This is a critical step toward defining the clinical potential of the cells. "This is a long path," Dr. Butler stated. "We haven't solved how to restore touch but we've made a major first step by working out some of these protocols to create sensory interneurons." “In vitro–derived sensory INs can be used in drug testing platforms targeting diseased sensory INs as well as investigating the feasibility of using them in cellular replacement therapies,” the authors of the Stem Cell Reports paper concluded. “The ability to generate spinal INs in vitro will also accelerate studies examining the basis of debilitating spinal dysfunctions, such as congenital pain insensitivity and hereditary sensory and autonomic neuropathies.” Paragraph 1- Summary of the main Ideas of the article in your own words(50%of your grade) Only 5-7 sentences Paragraph 2- Your reflection/opinion/commentary on the issues presented in the article what do you think about this topic?(50%of your grade) Only 5-7 sentences
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Explanation & Answer


Running head: INTEREST RATES


Interest Rates
Student’s Name
Students Affiliation


U.S. interest rates vary from time to time due to factors such as economic crisis,
credit crisis and European economic conditions. During such periods, the interest
rates are very low. This also happens when the investors are afraid of overvalued
stocks and this result to them dumping their stock and hence the stock market
experiencing a major decline. The anticipated inflation may affect the demand and
supply of loanable funds and expected interest rates.
The interest rates are an interesting topic because it affects a large percentage of
people in America and other countries. The rates are unpredictable since they
change with time and period. Various factors contribute to this as discussed above
and not omitting the uncertainty in the stock market. It is difficult to control the
rates since they are automatically weighed by the existing economic conditions.


Running head: STEM CELLS


Stem Cells
Student’s Name
Students Affiliation



Stem cell-derived sensory interneurons do restore feeling in paralyzed patients. The drawback is
lack of protocol for procreating it. DI1s, the dI2s, and mechanosensory dI3s are interneurons
generated from a combination of retinoic acid and morphogenetic protein 4. DI 1s offers the
patient a sense where their body is in space and DI 3s a sense of pressure. Dr. Butler and his
colleagues have developed a protocol for generating the sensory interneurons and Butler hopes to
create one interneuron at a time.
The sensory interneurons obtained from stem cell are one vital improvement that is going to be
recognized by the whole world when the whole development process is done. Dr. Butler has
really contributed to this and has faith in making it simple in indicating the roles of each cell in
order to allow scientists to commence the process of using the cells in paralyzed patients. This
will benefit a large percentage of people in the world who have been paralyzed for years and
have survived with it.


Running head: CANCER SEEK


Cancer SEEK
Student’s Name
Students Affiliation



Cancer SEEK is a test that has been developed to screen eight forms of cancer
which include ovarian, liver, stomach, pancreas, esophagus, colorectal, lung, and
breast, and also it’s possible to identify the part that the cancer has affected. Many
deaths in U.S.A. are caused by cancer. Cancer SEEK helps in identifying the
requirements in for a cancer blood test and this is important so that the patient does
not have to undergo unnecessary procedures. The focus on cancer research has
currently changed from late stage to early stage.
This test, Cancer SEEK, has really brought progress in the health sector
considering that approximately 60% of people have died in America due to cancer.
It is now easier to identify the location of the tumor and this facilitates efficient
medication of the patients. It helps in identification of early cancers and also
specifying the organ origin of the cancer. Many countries will embrace this as
cancer has become like an outbreak.


Scientists Develop Single Blood Test That Detects Eight Common Cancers

Click Image To Enlarge +

S ource: © i nkaone/ F ot ol i

A research team headed by scientists at Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center has developed a
multianalyte blood test that can screen for eight common forms of cancer and help to identify the
tumor location. The test, called CancerSEEK, identifies eight...

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