Nearly 300 visitors and staff received free mouth and throat screenings at Mount Sinai Beth Israel and The Mount Sinai Hospital during Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Month in April. Free educational material about oropharyngeal cancer and its association with the human papillomavirus (HPV)—which accounts for nearly 85 percent of new cases—also was available at both campuses. “Patients who have oropharyngeal cancer caused by HPV and receive timely treatment have better survival rates than those who don’t act quickly,” says Brett Miles, MD, DDS, Associate Professor of Otolaryngology, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, and Head and Neck Surgeon at the Head and Neck Institute. Other risk factors for oral cancer include alcohol and tobacco use.
Shutting down inflammation within the body, and then harnessing the immune system to recognize and destroy cancer cells, could provide the one-two punch needed to effectively treat head and neck cancers, according to researchers at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.
Research into the pivotal role played by the inflammatory molecule inducible nitric oxide synthase (iNOS) in promoting cancer growth and immune evasion is being led by Andrew G. Sikora, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor and Director of Head and Neck Translational Research in the Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery.