An ancient and very important Irish creature
(No, not a leprechaun…hehe.) Wow. What a trip! Stefano and I, and our friends, actually got back at the end of August, but since then I’ve been busy with finishing the translation of an article and other stuff…no time to write a post. Here I am, though, finally! We spent three weeks traveling around Ireland, from Dublin to Kilkenny, then down to Cobh (near Cork), and then, after stopping at Mizen Head, Ireland’s most southwesterly point, up to Kenmare, Dingle, and Doolin. It would take me hours to write about all the beautiful things we saw and all the things we did…and about the Irish people...
Source: Margaret's Corner - September 14, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll tetrapod Valentia Island Source Type: blogs

New curcumin myeloma clinical trial
Conclusion: “Curcumin has an efficacy in improving overall remission and decreasing NF-kB, VEGF, TNF-a, and IL-6 levels in myeloma patients.” And so we have more proof…and this proof comes from actual myeloma patients, not from cells grown in a Petri dish. The evidence is piling up! I wonder when (or if!) our myeloma luminaries and organisations are going to wake up to the fact that curcumin has a real potential to help us myeloma folks at every stage of this cancer. If I could, I would tell them (the above luminaries and organisations) to ignore the profits and benefits (international conferences held i...
Source: Margaret's Corner - August 5, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll curcumin myeloma clinical trial Source Type: blogs

The hidden village: Isola Santa
Last Friday was a holiday here in Florence…San Giovanni,  = St. John, Florence’s patron saint. So Stefano and I decided to spend the three-day weekend in an ancient village called Isola Santa ( = Saint Island) up in the Alpi Apuane (Apuan Alps), a mountain range in northern Tuscany. Isola Santa is perched on the side of a mountain and reachable by a rather steep walk down from the main road where we parked our car.  We were hoping to escape the horrendous heat wave that has hit Florence in this period…really awful, damp heat… And, in part, we were successful, although it got warm there, too, durin...
Source: Margaret's Corner - June 28, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Isola Santa Source Type: blogs

Ch âteaux de la Loire
Château de Blois Wow, what a trip! The villages, the scenery, the food and, of course!, the castles, the fabulous châteaux of the Loire Valley. Here’s the list of all the castles we visited from May 28 to June 4 (June 3, really, since we left for Annecy on the 4th). So, 7 full days in the valley. Bourges During our two-day stay in Blois we visited the following castles: Château de Blois, Château de Chambord, Château de Cheverny, Château de Chaumont. Chateau de Chambord (the exterior was being restored, so, unfortunately, my best photos are of the interior) We spent most of our stay in Tours, and from there we...
Source: Margaret's Corner - June 14, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Loire Valley Source Type: blogs

A little holiday
Well, actually, for us it’s a BIG holiday: we’re driving to the Loire Valley tomorrow and will be traveling around the Tours and Blois area, visiting castles and pretty medieval towns for about 10 days. Bliss! She hated the collar, but she didn’t complain, especially after she found a new…friend with a similar collar… News snippets: 1. Petunia was sterilised last week and is doing beautifully. She is such a sweetie (unless you try to put her inside the cat carrier, in which case she goes absolutely ballistic and twists and turns and…well, those of you who have cats will know what I mean,...
Source: Margaret's Corner - May 26, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Source Type: blogs

Castles and croissants
Hi everyone! I hope you’re doing fabulously!!! I’ve been getting messages from blog readers with a variety of queries, and that made me realise that I haven’t been blogging for a VERY LONG TIME! So sorry about that! Yes, true, I’m still quite “blogged out,” but mainly I’ve been busy with a bunch of projects that I’ve been putting off for years. Petunia, Florence, May 2022 In June we’re having our roof redone and solar panels installed, as well as a bunch of other stuff, including having air-conditioning put in the only (two) rooms that don’t have it. Our cat-vomit...
Source: Margaret's Corner - May 6, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Source Type: blogs

“ Why multiple myeloma returns ” …
That’s the title of an interesting Science Daily article that I came across this morning (and that blog reader Ana also told me about in a comment I read soon afterward, thank you!). Here’s the link: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2022/03/220301131117.htm?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email In a nutshell, a group of researchers at the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin discovered that the culprit to the HUGE problem of drug resistance (non-genetic drug resistance, in particular) in myeloma is the increased production of a protein, the CDK6 protein, which not only activates cell prolifera...
Source: Margaret's Corner - March 2, 2022 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll CDK6 protein in myeloma Source Type: blogs

Happy Holidays! Buone Feste!
My attempts at putting a Santa hat on Potter and Pandora…Evidently, my kitties are more Grinch than Santa, as you can tell by the happy (not!) expressions on their faces…   (Source: Margaret's Corner)
Source: Margaret's Corner - December 25, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Source Type: blogs

Petunia and Puffin
Everything is going well. Very well. Two days ago I had my first orthopaedic checkup at the clinic and was told that I am their best patient, top of the class (hmmm, perhaps that’s what they say to every patient…nonetheless, I was pleased!). I’m down to one crutch now, which has made a huuuuuge difference to me, since I can manage the stairs on my own and take showers now! Yay! So…all is well on the hip replacement front. So nice to be without pain…so nice! In about three weeks, these two Maine Coon kittens will be joining our family. As I mentioned in a previous post, they have the same paren...
Source: Margaret's Corner - December 23, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Maine Coon kittens Source Type: blogs

After hip surgery
I had my left hip replaced last Tuesday, November 30, and am happy to report that the surgery went amazingly well. I’m going to be using the word “amazing” a lot in this post…I mean, just think that my wound was closed with some sort of super glue. Glue! No stitches, not even one. Isn’t that…amazing?  Well, it’s amazing to me, anyway. On Friday, that is, just three days after surgery, I came home…walking! Sure, I was walking with two crutches, but using them as you use walking sticks when you’re on a hike. Ama…zing! Okay, it wasn’t all a picnic in the park....
Source: Margaret's Corner - December 11, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll hip replacement surgery Source Type: blogs

New hip, new kittens, new citizenship …
How did October fly past so quickly? ?  I really should make a point of posting something once a week when I’m super busy with life happenings. But sometimes it isn’t that simple. In my defence, at least this time, a lot has been going on, as you will see… I went through a lot of waiting in October–waiting for all my tests to be set up, waiting in waiting rooms to have my tests done, and then waiting for test results. Waiting waiting waiting. I still have some waiting to do, but most of it is over. I have all my test results, I mean. The most important result is that my PET and CAT scans were both negative, meanin...
Source: Margaret's Corner - November 17, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Source Type: blogs

New study: ursolic acid and myeloma cells
Conclusion: “These findings suggest that MRBE and its active ingredient, ursolic acid, […] may have significant chemopreventive potential against MM.” Very exciting, don’t you think? Of course, we must remember that this is a study that used MM cells in a lab setting (not human patients, I mean), so, as always, we mustn’t get overly excited. But still, a wee bit of excitement can’t hurt, right?   I have already ordered some white mulberry tea, while I do some more research to find a reliable source for ursolic acid (I hope to find the Morus Alba extract…but so far, I’ve foun...
Source: Margaret's Corner - September 30, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Morus Alba myeloma ursolic acid white mulberry Source Type: blogs

Bmb
I had my bone marrow biopsy yesterday (BMB in English, BOM in Italian). The easiest I’ve ever had. It wasn’t completely pain-free, which would have been, methinks, impossible (after all, the needle has to penetrate your pelvic bone!), and in fact a couple of times I felt what I can describe as painful shockwaves running down my right leg, but no, nothing unbearable. And the BMB was also over quickly, compared to my three others. After it was done, the nurse bandaged and iced me up and then asked me to turn over and lie on my back to apply pressure on the area. That was nice. My previous BMB doctors had simply s...
Source: Margaret's Corner - September 22, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll biopsia osteo-midollare BMB BOM bone marrow biopsy Source Type: blogs

The fun is over …
Sirmione, Lago di Garda Stefano and I had a lovely relaxing holiday in August. The first leg of our trip consisted of three days in the medieval town of Sirmione on the shores of one of Italy’s largest and prettiest lakes, the Lago di Garda. To be honest, though, I couldn’t wait to leave. It wasn’t the heat that got to me (after Florence, practically anything would have felt cool…), but rather the throngs of unmasked tourists surrounding us as we walked along the town’s narrow streets. I found that quite unsettling. True, you don’t have to wear a mask now when you’re out in the ope...
Source: Margaret's Corner - September 17, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll hip replacement surgery Lago di Braies Mantova Tre Cime di Lavaredo Source Type: blogs

Holiday!!!
Just a quick post to say that Stefano and I are finally on holiday and leaving for our 18-day trip to northern Italy in  just a couple of hours. I won’t be posting anything in this period. A holiday is a holiday… Even though we are both vaccinated against Covid-19 (he undoubtedly is more protected than I am, because of my impaired immune system, but, still, I should be somewhat protected…), we will take precautions, huge precautions: stay away from crowds, double-mask if we go inside anywhere, wash/disinfect our hands as often as possible…in short, better be safe than sorry. That Delta variant is n...
Source: Margaret's Corner - August 11, 2021 Category: Cancer & Oncology Authors: Margaret Tags: Blogroll Source Type: blogs