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The official website of Van Andel Institute

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    Cell cannibalism process implicated in human disease determined through collaboration with Los Alamos National Laboratory Grand Rapids, Mich. (March 14, 2013) – Van Andel Institute (VAI) researchers recently published a mathematical model of autophagy, a complex process involved in determining cell death or survival.  The autophagic process has been implicated in human diseases such as neurodegeneration, and...

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    The post Van Andel Institute scientists model complex cancer cell behavior appeared first on VAI.


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    Grand Rapids, Mich. (Nov. 15, 2013) – A discovery by scientists at Van Andel Institute offers promise of an innovative treatment strategy to impair the growth of cancer cells. The study identifies two compounds that slowed tumor growth while protecting normal tissue. The results may lead to an improved and safer therapy for a variety of human cancers....

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    The post Van Andel Institute cancer research study discovers a new strategy to target cancer cells appeared first on VAI.


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    Note: This press release was written by John Hopkins Medicine. Dr. Stephen Baylin, who holds a joint appointment at Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) and at Johns Hopkins University’s Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center, is the corresponding author on the paper referenced. Read the release.   (August 27, 2015) – Working with human cancer cell lines and mice,...

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    The post Researchers thwart cancer cells by triggering ‘virus alert’ appeared first on VAI.


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    Note: This press release was written by Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. Dr. Peter Jones, Van Andel Research Institute’s (VARI) research director, is a contributing author on the study, which was led by Princess Margaret Cancer Centre and University of Toronto’s Dr. Daniel De Carvalho. Read the release.   (TORONTO, Canada – Aug. 27, 2015) – ​Researchers targeting...

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    The post Researchers mimic viral infection in colon cancer stem cells, identify druggable target to potentially root out disease, end relapse appeared first on VAI.


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    From a close-up look at molecules that are one-billionth of a meter long to unraveling the code that operates on top of our DNA, there’s no shortage of discoveries to be excited about in cancer research. In honor of Cancer Research Month, we’re taking a look at six of the most compelling discoveries and initiatives in...

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    The post Six of the most exciting things happening right now in cancer research appeared first on VAI.


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    For the seventh year, more than 200 scientists from across the country will converge at Van Andel Research Institute around a central topic—the origins of cancer. Born out of the renowned Oncogene Meetings of the 1980s, 90s and early 2000s, the Origins of Cancer symposium has continued the spirit of these earlier gatherings by serving...

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    The post Top three reasons to attend Origins of Cancer appeared first on VAI.


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    Join us for a luncheon focused on common cancers affecting women. The luncheon will feature a presentation and Q&A with Dr. Hui Shen.

    The post A Conversation About Women’s Health hosted by Carol Van Andel appeared first on VAI.


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    What is cancer? Cancer is a blanket term for more than 100 related diseases that have a core characteristic in common—unchecked cell growth. At the most basic level, cancers occur when cells divide out of control, eventually interfering with important processes that keep us healthy. Cancer cells also may spread to other tissues, a process...

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    The post Friday explainer: What is cancer? appeared first on VAI.


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    Each year, more than 250,000 women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with breast cancer, making it the most common cancer in women, with the exception of skin cancers. Thanks in part to screening, early intervention and advances in treatment, the number of deaths from breast cancer dropped 39 percent between 1989 and 2015. However,...

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    The post Breast Cancer Awareness Month: A look at the latest research appeared first on VAI.


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    With 2017 quickly coming to close, we’d like to reflect on all that’s been accomplished by rounding up some of this year’s most notable stories from the Institute. Van Andel Research Institute (VARI) installed world-class cryo-electron microscopes (cryo-EM): In March, the Institute officially opened its David Van Andel Advanced Cryo-Electron Microscopy Suite to enable discovery...

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    The post 10 highlights: A look back at 2017 appeared first on VAI.


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    Colorectal cancers are the third most common cancer in the U.S. (excluding skin cancers). Colon and rectal cancers, often referred to together as “colorectal cancer,” share some important similarities — both affect parts of the large intestine, both frequently present as adenocarcinomas (a type of cancer that begins in cells that produce fluids such as mucus),...

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    The post March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month. Here’s what you need to know. appeared first on VAI.


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    Comprehensive scientific resource highlighted in more than two dozen papers published in Cell Press by The Cancer Genome Atlas

    The post Van Andel Research Institute scientists help redefine how cancer is categorized appeared first on VAI.


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    Scientists now have a powerful new resource for developing better treatments for common cancers of the esophagus, stomach, colon and rectum, collectively known as gastrointestinal (GI) adenocarcinomas. In all, these cancers claim more than 1.4 million lives annually across the globe. For more than 50 years, GI adenocarcinomas have largely defied therapeutic progress, stymying attempts...

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    The post Comprehensive atlas redefines gastrointestinal cancers appeared first on VAI.


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    As a kid, Dr. Bart Williams didn’t plan on being a scientist. That all changed after a summer spent working in a lab, the first step in a fruitful career that has contributed to advances in how we study cancer and shaped our understanding of bone diseases such as osteoarthritis. Now director of Van Andel...

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    The post Meet the scientist behind the science: Dr. Bart Williams appeared first on VAI.


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    What is cancer metastasis? Cancer metastasis refers to the spread of cancer cells beyond their original location, to other parts of the body. What causes metastasis? Metastasis occurs when cancer cells migrate from the primary tumor to another site via blood or lymph (more on the step-by-step process here). The resulting new tumor is the...

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    The post Explainer: What is cancer metastasis? appeared first on VAI.


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    Mahershala Ali, Kathy Bates, Katie Couric, Jennifer Garner, Tony Hale, Marg Helgenberger, Ed Helms, Ken Jeong, Marlee Matlin, Matthew McConaughey, Maria Menounos, Jillian Michaels, Trevor Noah, Dak Prescott, Italia Ricci,  Rob Riggle, Karla Souza, David Spade, Keith Urban, and Reese Witherspoon to appear in live one-hour event co-executive produced by Bradley Cooper  2018 telecast marks ten...

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    The post Stars rally together again for Stand Up To Cancer’s live broadcast on September 7 appeared first on VAI.


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    Each year, more than 10,000 children in the U.S. are diagnosed with cancer, a figure that has slowly but steadily risen over the past several decades. Today, thanks to improved care, more kids are beating cancer than ever before. Still, more research is desperately needed to root out the causes of pediatric cancers, which differ...

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    The post A Conversation About Pediatric Cancer Research and Treatment appeared first on VAI.


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    Pancreatic cancer is an aggressive, tough-to-treat disease in which malignant cells develop in the pancreas, a small gland located near the stomach that is responsible for producing hormones and digestive fluids. It is the third deadliest cancer in the U.S., claiming more than 40,000 lives each year. By 2020, it is expected to surpass colorectal...

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    The post Disease profile: Pancreatic cancer appeared first on VAI.


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    Last Friday was a day to remember, one that will affect lives for years to come. We were thrilled to be a part of the 2018 Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) telecast, which raised a record-breaking $123 million for cancer research. The Institute has worked closely with Stand Up To Cancer since 2014, when it became...

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    The post That’s a wrap! Van Andel Research Institute featured in Stand Up To Cancer telecast appeared first on VAI.


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    Many of cancer’s long-buried secrets are now out in the open thanks to a collaborative effort to catalog the genetic switches that govern life The instructions for initiating and maintaining life are contained in DNA, a 6-foot-long, ladder-like molecule that determines every facet of our being from hair color to inherent risk for disease. Yet...

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    The post Large-scale cancer study locates “light switches” in the “dark” regions of the genome appeared first on VAI.


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