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Issues in Oncology

Health-Care Fraud Prosecutions Are on the Rise

Prosecuting health-care fraud is a top priority for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and other federal government agencies. After all, the government earns a $6 return for every $1 that it spends on enforcement. In December 2018, the DOJ announced that it had obtained more than $2.5 billion in settlements and judgments from civil cases involving health-care fraud in the fiscal year ending September 30, 2018. In addition, the DOJ criminally prosecuted hundreds of health-care fraud cases over this period. At the same time, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector General excluded thousands of providers and entities from participating in and billing Medicare, Medicaid, and other federal health-care programs.

Integrative Oncology

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids (omega-3s) play an important role in many physiologic processes. They are acquired through diet or via supplementation due to the inability of the human body to synthesize them. Fatty fish, some plants, and nut oils are rich in omega-3s. Dietary supplements include fish oil, krill oil, cod liver oil, and algal oil, available in the form of capsules or soft gels. They are widely used for depression, to lower cholesterol, to boost memory, as well as to reduce inflammation and the risk of heart attack.

Lymphoma

Update on Newer Treatments in Non-Hodgkin Lymphomas

As part of The ASCO Post’s continued coverage of the 2018 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting & Exposition, here is an update on several different studies on new therapeutics in non-Hodgkin lymphomas (NHLs), including follicular lymphoma, diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), primary mediastinal B-cell lymphoma, and CD30-positive peripheral T-cell lymphoma.


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Breast Cancer

We Need Better Screening Methods for Detecting Breast Cancer

My breast cancer was probably a decade in the making, although I only became aware that there might be a problem in 2014, when I noticed some slight pain in my left breast. A routine mammogram and ultrasound found benign cysts in my dense breasts, which most likely explained the pain, I was told, but nothing more troubling than that. In 2015, I had another routine mammogram, still complaining about the pain in my left breast; once again, I was given the all-clear. The following year, the radiology center started offering three-dimensional mammogram imaging, which is reported to be more accurate at detecting breast cancer than two-dimensional digital mammograms; again, the test found no suspicious signs of cancer.

Prostate Cancer
Immunotherapy

Viral Vector–Based Immunotherapy in Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer

In a phase III trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Gulley et al found that PROSTVAC, a viral vector-based immunotherapy, did not improve overall survival or 6-month event-free survival vs placebo in patients with asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer.

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More Top Stories

Kidney Cancer
Immunotherapy

Toni K. Choueiri, MD, on Renal Cell Carcinoma: Trial Results on Avelumab Plus Axitinib vs Sunitinib

Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Innovative Research to Improve the Supportive Care Needs of Cancer Survivors

First launched in 2014, the Palliative Care in Oncology Symposium introduced a nascent interdisciplinary approach to the treatment of both the physical and psychological symptoms of cancer to improve disease outcome and quality of life for patients. Today, it has evolved into a leading forum for...

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FDA Pipeline: Assay Approval, Breakthrough Designations for AI Technology and CLL, and More

In the past week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved a companion diagnostic assay, granted Breakthrough Device and Breakthrough Therapy designations, and extended the review period of a proposed treatment. The agency also published four draft guidances and one final guidance...

Breast Cancer

Andrew D. Seidman, MD, and Charles E. Geyer, MD, on HER2-Positive Breast Cancer: Results From the KATHERINE Trial

Immunotherapy
Gastrointestinal Cancer

Study Shows Limited Antitumor Activity of Pembrolizumab in Neuroendocrine Tumors

Neuroendocrine tumors appear resistant to single-agent immunotherapy, according to the results of the KEYNOTE-028 trial of pembrolizumab. “Pembrolizumab monotherapy showed limited antitumor activity but a manageable safety profile in patients with previously treated, advanced neuroendocrine...

Cancer Drug Development Award Given to Geoffrey Shapiro, PhD, MD

The Targeted Anticancer Therapies (TAT) 2019 Honorary Award for cancer drug development has been given to Geoffrey Shapiro, PhD, MD, Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and institute physician at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI), for his leadership in developmental...

Incidence of Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer in Recipients of Multiple Kidney Transplants

The incidence of nonmelanoma skin cancer may be more common in recipients of kidney transplants vs patients on maintenance dialysis. Researchers looked to determine if the risk of nonmelanoma skin cancer is lower during periods of graft loss with a return to dialysis vs during periods of...

Breast Cancer

Xavier Pivot, MD, PhD, on Early Breast Cancer: Results From the PHARE Trial

Pancreatic Cancer

Mutations in DNA Damage Repair Predict Benefit With Platinum Agents in Pancreatic Cancer

Patients with advanced pancreatic cancer who have homologous repair damage response mutations may derive considerable benefit from treatment with platinum agents, according to an analysis of patients in the Know Your Tumor Program presented by Michael Pishvaian, MD, PhD, of Georgetown University,...

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Does Postoperative Conformal Radiotherapy Improve Survival in Pediatric Patients With Ependymoma?

Treatment with conformal radiation therapy immediately following surgery in children with ependymoma may greatly improve survival. The findings were published by Merchant et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. “Historically, children under the age of 3 with ependymoma have a worse...