Chrystal Palaty

About Chrystal Palaty

Chrystal Palaty, PhD translates science into English in Vancouver, BC. Her research career focused on molecular biology and biochemistry, but she writes about a wide range of topics from aquaculture to oncology.

A Potential New Biomarker Panel for Lung Cancer Diagnosis

Lung cancer diagnosis typically involves a physical examination, imaging and procedures such as a bronchoscopy or a biopsy to obtain samples. Pathologists analyze tumor specimens to determine cancer histology and conduct molecular testing to identify specific gene mutations and rearrangements. This information helps clinicians identify the best therapy for each individual.

Dr. Maria Uribarri and her […]

By |January 15th, 2016|Lung Cancer|0 Comments

Combining Biomarkers with Risk Factors to Predict Coronary Artery Disease

Although cardiovascular risk factors such as increased age, hypertension, diabetes mellitus, smoking and dyslipidemia are well known, they do not accurately predict the risk of coronary artery disease. A Korean research group led by Sunsoo Cho1 evaluated whether adding additional biomarkers to these conventional risk factors would increase their ability to predict coronary artery disease.

This […]

By |January 1st, 2016|Cardio Vascular Disease|0 Comments

uPA and PAI-1 Breast Cancer Biomarkers and Clinical Utility: When Strong Evidence is Not Enough

Multiple studies have demonstrated that urokinase plasminogen activator (uPA) and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1) have clinical utility as breast cancer biomarkers. uPA is an extracellular matrix-degrading protease involved in cancer invasion and metastasis. PAI-1 is thought to enhance angiogenesis and block apoptosis. Although PAI-1 inhibits the activity of uPA, very high levels of these two […]

By |December 20th, 2015|Breast Cancer|0 Comments

TIMP-1 and HER2 ECD as Biomarkers for Breast Cancer

Researchers are currently investigating tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinases (TIMP) as potential biomarkers in a number of different diseases including cancer, cardiovascular disease, chronic lung disease and diabetes. TIMPs may be especially relevant as cancer biomarkers because they inhibit the activity of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs), which play a role in tumor invasion and metastasis. Many studies […]

By |December 2nd, 2015|Breast Cancer|0 Comments

Biomarker Basics

As this blog focuses on reviewing scientific papers describing biomarker discovery, validation and clinical use, we felt that it was time to pause and review some biomarker basics.

What is a biomarker? A biomarker can be objectively measured to assess a biologic process, a disease process, or a response to a treatment or lifestyle change.1 Almost […]

Do You Know Your Oxidative Stress Balance Score?

Oxidative stress results from an imbalance between oxidants and antioxidants that leads to cellular damage. Oxidative stress is complex, involving both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. It is closely tied to inflammation and contributes to aging, cancer and cardiovascular disease. As mentioned in a previous blog post Redox Redux, oxidative stress and damage are challenging to […]

By |November 18th, 2015|Inflammation|0 Comments

Redox Redux: Oxidative Stress and Biomarkers

Oxidative redox processes can cause human disease. During periods of oxidative stress, reactive oxygen and nitrogen species can structurally alter and impair the function of cellular proteins, lipids and DNA. While these highly reactive and short-lived species are hard to measure directly, researchers monitor them through the footprints they leave behind on certain proteins. Identifying […]

By |November 11th, 2015|Breast Cancer, Inflammation|0 Comments

Metabolic Syndrome: Proteomic Changes in Pigs Fed a Cafeteria Diet vs. a Mediterranean Diet

A team of Dutch researchers, led by Marinus F.W. te Pas,1 tested whether pigs can serve as a model for early stage metabolic syndrome biomarkers. Pigs share many metabolic similarities with humans and offer several advantages for studies focusing on dietary effects. Not only can metabolic syndrome be experimentally induced in pigs and a more […]

By |November 1st, 2015|Metabolic Disorder|0 Comments

Amlexanox, Obesity and the IKK-e and TBK1 Signalling Pathway

Previous posts have described some of the novel strategies and innovative technologies used to identify candidate biomarkers and therapeutic targets. But what comes next? How can researchers verify that putative biomarkers are biologically relevant and worthy of further research? Shannon Reilly et al.,1 deconstruct the signalling pathway that mediates obesity-induced inflammation, and elegantly demonstrate that […]

By |October 20th, 2015|Obesity|0 Comments

Plasma 1-Deoxysphingolipid Predicts Type 2 Diabetes in At-Risk Population

A research team led by Alaa Othman1 explored the “lipidome” to identify novel risk factors or biomarkers that predict the incidence of type 2 diabetes. The researchers measured sphingoid base profiles in a prospective cohort of 339 individuals who had already experienced a coronary event. The team determined whether this data could help predict which […]

By |October 14th, 2015|Diabetes|0 Comments