Glowing Cancer Cells

My friend Emily Low Johnson’s father, Dr. Philip S. Low, is a cancer researcher at Purdue University. His team has come up with a new way to see cancer cells or tumors through the development of a flourescent dye that makes the cancer cells “glow.”  The cells are tricked into absorbing the flourescent dye via folic acid, which cancer cells need to live.  Dr. Low was interviewed on CBS and ABC last weekend. Continue reading


One of the odd things about going through cancer (or any major life-changing event), is the “I feel so alone” problem.

Family, friends, caregivers and doctors can do an enormous number of things. They can be there to help emotionally, physically and spiritually. But there is one thing that most of them cannot do (THANKFULLY) and that is to know exactly what this experience is like.  This gap seems especially wide with rare diseases like appendix cancers, where there are only 500 – 1000 cases diagnosed each year in the U.S.  There just aren’t that many of us around. So one of my reasons for writing this blog, besides being therapeutic  for me, was to connect with other appendix cancer folks.  I’ve been lucky to have found some friends through their blogs (Dan, Mark), through my blog (Randy, Karen), in the hospital (Val, Jim), through friends (Owen), through a mentor program (Becky) and by just scouring around on the internet.  Karen (who I haven’t met yet but who found my blog a few weeks ago) is the first person I know that has my same diagnosis of non-mucinous colonic-type appendiceal adenocarcinoma.

Wow! Finding these people has been so good for my head.   And it was especially fun to join up with a bunch of folks at the first-ever “Appendilooza” Appendix Cancer Thrivers Fest this week. Continue reading