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March 4, 2011     Post-Gazette
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Page 14 POST-GAZETTE, MARCH 4, 2011 NEWS BRIEFS (FROM ITALIAN NEWSPAPERS AND OTHER PUBLICATIONS) LO SAPEVATE CHE ... L'alterazione della proteina 'm Tor' e il difetto cellulare che causa la nascita delle cellule tumorali. La proteina, che in condizioni normali gioca un ruolo di primo piano nel processo di crescita delle cellule, e stata osservata nel 90% dei tumori, ma il suo ruolo nella malattia non era ancora stato compreso. La scoperta del difetto cellulare che scatena i tumori si deve allo studio coordinato di un italiano, Dr. Davide Ruggero, che lavora negli Stati Uniti da dieci anni presso l'Universitt della California a San Francisco (UCSF). La scoperta, che si  guadagnata la copertina della rivista CANCER.. CELL, apre la strada alla cura di molte forme di tumore: linfoma, cancro aUa prostata, al seno, al colon-retto, al cervello e mieloma multiplo;  partita ora la sperimentazione clinica di una molecola che nei t0pi ha dimostrato di correggere il difetto. Oltre che nei topi, nei quali la proteina era stata alterata, la molecola  stata sperimentata, dallo stesso gruppo di ricerca su cellule tumorali umane. La m01ecola chiamata PP242,  stata messa a punto nel laboratorio di farmacologia molecolare diretto da Kevin Shokat. Nei topi, ha osservato Ruggero, si dimostrata efficace sia facendo regredire il tumore sia impedendo che si formasse. Attualmentre il farmaco  nella prima fase di sperimentazione clinica sull'uomo, e ora il gruppo di ricerca sta testando la molecola su vari tipi di tumore. I ricercatori si sono concentrati sulla proteina 'm Tor' (mammalian Target of rapamycin), gi& nota per essere coinvolta nei disturbi sul sistema immunitario,  sospettata di essere coinvolta anche nello sviluppo dei tumori perchd, ha detto Ruggero, e stata osservata nel 90% di essi. Ruggero ha anche detto che il coinvolgimento di 'm Tor' nei tumori era solo un sospetto, ma ora abbiamo capito che l'alterazione di 'm Tor' e la causa scatenante. Ora possiamo farmacol.ogicamente aggredire meglio la proteina. DID YOU KNOW THAT ... The cellular flaw that causes the birth of tumor cells is the alteration of the protein 'm Tor'. The protein that in normal conditions plays a prominent role in cellular growth has been observed in 90% of tumors, but its role in the illness has not been understood yet. The discovery of the flaw of the cells, which unleashes the tumors, has been made by an Italian: Dr. Davide Ruggero, who has been work- ing in the United States for ten years at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). The discovery, which was prominently on the front page of the magazine Cancer Cell, opens up the door to the treatment of many kinds of tumors: lymphoma, prostate, breast, colon-rectal, brain, multiple myelomas; the clinical experimentation of a molecule has started in mice and has shown that it can correct the flaw (defect). In addition to the mice, where the protein had been altered, the (protein) has been experimented, by the same research team, on tumor cells on humans. The molecule called "PP 242," had been prepared in the lab of "Molecular pharmacology" directed by Kevin Shokat. Ruggero has observed, in mice, that the protein has been effective not only by shrinking the tumor but also by preventing its birth. Presently the medicine is in the first phase of clinical experimentation on man, and now the research group is testing the molecule on different types of tumors. The researchers have focused their study on the 'm Tor' pro- tein (mammalian Target of rapamycin) already known for being involved in the affliction of the immune system, and suspected to be also involved in the development of tumors, for ittias been observed, Ruggero has stated, in 90% of them. Ruggcro has said that the inclusion of 'm Tor' in the tumors was only an assumption, but we now understand that the alteration of 'm Tor' is the cause of the outbreak (of tumors). We can now attack the protein with drugs (medication). On Sale Now! THE NORTH END Where It All Began The Way It Was by Fred Langone SALE PRICE $19.95 Plus Shipping & Handling On Site at The Post-Gazette 5 Prince Street, North End, Boston, MA i' i, i .... , The time has come, the walrus said, TO TALK OF MANY THINGS of shoes and ships and sealing wax of cabbages and kings by Sal Giarratani A NEW GREENWAY VISION? According to a front page February 17 Boston Globe news story, the state's efforts to bring cultural and com- munity institutions to the Rose Kennedy Greenway has been declared dead as a door- nail. The YMCA of Greater Boston is the latest builder to cancel its plans there. The YMCA voted down plans for a proposed $70 million com- munity center on the Green- way next to the North End. The plan had been to cover unsightly ramps with build- ings. Massachusetts Horti- culture Society's Garden Under Glass was abandoned in 2008. The New Center for Arts and Culture was aban- doned in 2010. The Boston Museum went down in 2009. Now, the YMCA is also gone. Four big projects gone south. Former state Transporta- tion Secretary Fred Salvucci told the Boston Globe, "This should not have happened, but the question now is what you do about it. As long as nothing is built over the ramp parcels, these parts of the Greenway are not going to look like parks to anyone." TILL / BOSTON FAMILIES FOR AUTISM The Autism Support Cen- ter in Chelsea announces the new Parent Support Group meeting (Spanish and English) is being planned. The 5-week workshop train- ing location is to be deter- mined upon enrollment. This support group is de- signed to help parents of children and adolescents with Autism Spectrum Dis- orders. For info call Carmen Abreu-Riley or email to Carmen. abreuriley@tillinc.org. DeLEO GOES AFTER WELFARE ABUSE House Speaker Bob DeLeo says it is time to get tough with the abuse of the welfare system. A recent review showed nearly $200 thou- sand in taxpayer money was wasted last year on a broad array of non-essential items including alcohol, tanning, lingerie and movie tickets to name a few. DeLeo stated, "It angers me, it just really does because that money could be put to other uses. It just got to stop. We can't al- low this to happen." The Speaker says he's tar: geting the spending and looking for ways to halt the abuse. It is one thing for most of us to see CVS Phar- macy getting paid through those EBT cards but should Chuck E. Cheese also be on that list? The State Depart- ment of Transitional Ser- vices hands out EBT cards to over 70,000 households. While most of the money spent went to supermarkets and pharmacies, there still seems to be too many who spend the money foolishly. People shouldn't be able to buy cigarettes or booze through the EBT cards but it still allegedly happened last year. I am glad to see Beacon Hill paying attention to this kind of abuse which needs to be halted. Kudos to Speaker DeLeo for sounding the charge on such charges. BUILD THE BILL RUSSELL STATUE NOW Former Boston Celtics leg- end Bill Russell symbolized Boston's great sports history. During my younger days, the Celtics were to basket- ball what the Yankees are to baseball. Russell helped carry the Big Green Machine to 11 champion- ships in his 13 years with the team. Boston needs to have a Bill Russell statue. The best site would be on Causeway Street by the TD Garden near the statue of Boston Bruins Bobby Orr. Old Boston Garden is gone but not its memory or the memories of watching both Orr and Russell do their magic. Orr was likable. Russell wasn't. However, what both did during their careers should be all that matters. Russell used to be bitter toward Boston and in return Bostonians, many of them, turned resentful toward him. He has gone out of his way to mend his ties to Boston and it is time for Boston fans to support the building of a statue for one of the best athletes in any sport to rep- resent Boston. Having stat- ues.of both Bobby Orr and Bill Russell makes good sense and the time is now to do it. TWO GOOD BOOKS i just began reading two good books. The first one is called "Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Think- ing," by Malcolm Gladwell who also authored "The Turning Point," and "The Yankee Years" by Joe Torre and Tom Verducci. Both seem like very good reads. NEXT STOP: WONDERLAND? NO, MAKE THAT MICHIGAN A guy from Shrewsbury was driving along Interstate 69 near the exit to Down- town Port Huron when he spotted an MBTA bus in front of him. According to the MBTA, the bus was en-route to Midwest Bus Corp., in Owosso, Michigan for re- pairs. Said Colin Parker, "It was the last thing I expected to see. The bus 750 miles from home was on its way for a midlife overhaul which is required because federal funds were used to purchase the bus. The Michigan com- pany was the low bidder. Liv- ing in East Boston, I thought my North Weymouth me- chanic was far away but this takes the cake. I think I might have felt better if there were a convoy of buses, but taking one bus at a time doesn't make sense to me. The fleet's overhaul could take forever. IT WON'T BE LONG, YEAH, YEAH, YEAH! The County Roscommon Associa.tion is starting off the St. Patrick's Day cel- ebration with its annual ban- quet on Sunday, March 6 at 4pm. Music by the Andy Healy Band. Tickets must be purchased in advance by calling West Roxbury's most famous undertaker at 617- 327-0100. It is a great un- dertaking on his part but who else but an undertaker could do the job, right? BILLY HIGGINS HONORED South Boston's own Billy Higgins was recently hon- ored by the State Depart- ment of Mental Health for his selfless volunteer efforts, which have enriched count- less lives. PASTA NITE AT ST. BRENDAN'S HALL The St. Vincent de Paul Society will be holding a pasta dinner at the church hall on Saturday, March 12 between 5-7pm. SBCA EVACUATION DAY BANQUET The South Boston Citizens Association will be holding its 113 th Annual Evacuation Day Banquet at the Conven- tion Center in South Boston on Friday, March 18 starting at 5:30pm. For tickets call Tom White at 781-350-8326 or email mail@southboston citizens.org. HEROIN ODs SOAR IN BOSTON Thee is a reported spike in heroin overdoses in Boston and health officials are deploying as many re- sources as possible into a battle to keep the number from rising even higher. So far this year, five fatal overdoses have already hap- pened on Boston streets. There were 21 such over- doses in 2010 and 16 in 2009. Between January 23 and February 3 of this year, Narcan was administered 18 times by EMTs for opiate overdoses. Last year in the same period, the number was only six. Boston Public Health has put more street workers out there to con- nect with users. This heroin issue has reached an epidemic propor- tion that the city battles every day. Harvard School of Dental Medicine to Hold Free Dental Clinic for Children The Harvard School of Dental Medicine will be holding a Free Dental Clinic for Children on Saturday, March 5 from 9 a.m. to I p.m. Services will include cleanings, exams, X-rays and referrals. Children ages one to 17 are welcome, and those 10 and up will The Harvard School of Dental Medicine is located at 188 Longwood Avenue in Boston's Longwood Medical Area., a short walk across Huntington Avenue from the Longwood stop on the Green Line. To make an appoint- ment, please call 857-209-4963 or email .................... re_c.eiye_,mouth_g_uar,ds.. ...... : ",,"" ' o', . ...... g_kas_:_harp.a1"@g,mm'(.cp_ m_ ................ '