head and neck cancer

ASCO Endorses ASTRO Guideline on Radiation Therapy for Oropharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma

As reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by Harry Quon, MD, of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and colleagues, ASCO has endorsed the recently published American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) evidence-based clinical practice guideline on radiation therapy for...

multiple myeloma

Results From Phase III ARROW Study of Once-Weekly Carfilzomib in Relapsed/Refractory Multiple Myeloma

On October 23, topline results of the phase III ARROW trial were announced, showing carfilzomib (Kyprolis) administered once weekly at 70 mg/m2 with dexamethasone allowed relapsed and refractory multiple myeloma patients to live 3.6 months longer without their disease worsening than...

skin cancer

Adjuvant Dabrafenib/Trametinib Combination Granted FDA Breakthrough Therapy Designation for Stage III Melanoma With BRAF V600 Mutation

On October 23, Novartis announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Breakthrough Therapy designation for dabrafenib (Tafinlar) in combination with trametinib (Mekinist) for the adjuvant treatment of patients with stage III melanoma with a BRAF V600 mutation following...

lung cancer

PanCan Risk Model for Lung Cancer Screening

Results of the Pan-Canadian Early Detection of Lung Cancer (PanCan) study, reported in The Lancet Oncology by Tammemagi et al, indicate that the PanCan risk model is effective in identifying persons found to have early-stage lung cancer on low-dose computed tomography (CT) screening. Study Details ...

breast cancer

Complications and Patient Satisfaction After Breast Reconstruction in Women Receiving Radiotherapy

In a prospective cohort study reported by Jagsi et al in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, autologous reconstruction was associated with fewer complications and greater patient satisfaction vs implant approaches in women receiving postmastectomy radiotherapy. Study Details The...

survivorship

New Persistent Opioid Use After Curative-Intent Cancer Surgery

A study reported by Lee et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology indicates that approximately 10% of patients undergoing curative-intent surgery for cancer become new persistent opioid users. Study Details The study involved data from 68,463 patients from a national data set of insurance claims...

hepatobiliary cancer

The Liver Meeting: Daily Aspirin May Reduce Risk for Hepatitis B Virus–Related Liver Cancer

A new study presented at The Liver Meeting, held by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases, found that daily aspirin therapy was significantly associated with a reduced risk in hepatitis B virus (HBV)–related liver cancer (Abstract 223). According to AASLD’s...

hepatobiliary cancer

The Liver Meeting: Direct-Acting Antiviral Medications as Hepatitis C Treatment May Reduce Risk of Liver Cancer

A new study presented at The Liver Meeting—held by the American Association for the Study of Liver Diseases—found that eradication of the hepatitis C virus induced by direct-acting antiviral medications is associated with a 71% reduction in the risk of liver cancer (Abstract 142)....

survivorship

Long-Term Survivors of Childhood Cancer Prone to ‘Job Lock’ due to Worries About Losing Health Insurance

The results of a national cancer survey reveal a significant number of childhood cancer survivors are worried about keeping their health insurance, to the point of letting it affect their career decisions. The findings were published by Kirchhoff et al in JAMA Oncology. Anne Kirchhoff, PhD,...

prostate cancer

HSD3B1 Genotype and Outcomes With ADT After Radiotherapy for Localized Prostate Cancer

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Hearn et al found that the presence of the HSD3B1 (1245C) allele was associated with more rapid development of metastases in patients receiving androgen-deprivation therapy for biochemical recurrence after primary radiation therapy for localized prostate...

lymphoma

Final Results of German Trial of PET-Guided Treatment in Advanced Hodgkin Lymphoma

Final results of the German Hodgkin Study Group phase III HD18 trial, reported in The Lancet by Borchmann et al, showed no benefit of adding rituximab (Rituxan) to escalated BEACOPP (eBEACOPP; bleomycin, etoposide, doxorubicin, cyclophosphamide, vincristine, procarbazine, and prednisone) in...

breast cancer

ASCO/CCO Focused Guideline Update on Role of Bone-Modifying Agents in Metastatic Breast Cancer

As reported by Catherine Van Poznak, MD, of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and colleagues in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, ASCO and Cancer Care Ontario (CCO) have collaborated in providing a focused update for the ASCO clinical practice guideline on the role of bone-modifying agents in...

breast cancer

ASHG 2017: Quantifying Breast Cancer Risk Based on Rare Variants and Background Risk

Rare variants combined with background genetic risk factors may account for many unexplained cases of familial breast cancer, and knowing the specific genes involved could inform choice of prevention and treatment strategies, according to findings presented in a plenary session at the American...

lymphoma

FDA Approves New Treatment for Adults With Mantle Cell Lymphoma

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) today granted accelerated approval to acalabrutinib (Calquence) for the treatment of adults with mantle cell lymphoma who have received at least one prior therapy. “Mantle cell lymphoma is a particularly aggressive cancer,” said Richard...

issues in oncology

Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Cancer-Specific Survival in California

In a study using California Cancer Registry data reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Ellis et al found that the stage at diagnosis was the greatest contributor to racial/ethnic disparities in cancer-specific survival, with neighborhood socioeconomic status and marital status also being...

gynecologic cancer

CD8-Positive Tumor-Infiltrating Lymphocytes and Survival in High-Grade Serous Ovarian Cancer

As reported in JAMA Oncology by Goode et al in the Ovarian Tumor Tissue Analysis Consortium, higher levels of cytotoxic CD8-positive tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes were associated with significantly improved overall survival among women with high-grade serous ovarian carcinomas. Study Details The ...

issues in oncology

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Rising Number of Seamless Clinical Trials in Oncology

The number of early-phase trials in oncology that adopted a seamless approach—as opposed to a traditional trial approach with defined phase I, II, and III plans—is rising, with data from the majority of them presented after 2014, according to a study presented by Barata et al at the...

solid tumors

AACR-NCI-EORTC: NCI-MATCH Reaches Central Patient-Screening Goal

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) Molecular Analysis for Therapy Choice (MATCH) clinical trial has achieved the goal of screening nearly 6,000 patients in just under 2 years, according to data presented by Chen et al at the AACR-NCI-EORTC International Conference on Molecular Targets and Cancer...

solid tumors

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Noninvasive Computational Imaging Approach May Help Predict Response to Immunotherapy

A computational imaging-based signature of immune-cell infiltration in and around a tumor could predict patients’ responses to treatment with anti–programmed cell death protein 1/programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-1/PD-L1) immunotherapies, according to data from a study presented by Sun et...

colorectal cancer

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Colorectal Cancer Test Could Detect Early Cancer-Causing Genetic Biomarkers With High Degree of Sensitivity

An investigational test that screens for colorectal cancer could detect genetic mutations that are indicative of the disease with a high degree of sensitivity and specificity, according to results of a study presented by Powell et al at the AACR-NCI-EORTC International Conference on Molecular...

lymphoma

FDA Approves Axicabtagene Ciloleucel for Large B-Cell Lymphoma

On October 18, 2017, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted regular approval to axicabtagene ciloleucel (Yescarta) for the treatment of adult patients with relapsed or refractory large B-cell lymphoma after two or more lines of systemic therapy, including diffuse large B-cell lymphoma...

health-care policy

Gary Gilliland, MD, PhD, Testifies Before Congress on NIH Funding System

Gary Gilliland, MD, PhD, President and Director of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, recently delivered the following testimony and answered questions from members of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies. His remarks...

head and neck cancer

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Tipifarnib Shows Durable Antitumor Activity in HRAS-Mutant Head and Neck Cancer

Preliminary results from a phase II open-label trial of tipifarnib, a farnesyltransferase inhibitor, in patients with HRAS-mutant head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) were presented by Alan L. Ho, MD, PhD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, at the AACR-NCI-EORTC International...

solid tumors

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Tazemetostat as Treatment for Certain Pediatric Relapsed or Refractory Solid Tumors

Children with relapsed or refractory malignant rhabdoid tumors, epithelioid sarcomas, or poorly differentiated chordomas with a particular genetic defect tolerated treatment with the investigational drug tazemetostat well, and some had objective and durable responses, according to data from a phase ...

colorectal cancer

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Colorectal Cancers May Mutate to Escape Immune System Detection

Whole-exome sequencing revealed that colorectal cancers with high mutational load (microsatellite instability–high, or MSI-H) predominantly use “immunoediting” to escape immune surveillance, while colorectal cancers with low mutational load (microsatellite stable, or MSS) use...

cns cancers

AACR-NCI-EORTC: Gene Therapy Shows Early Efficacy Against Recurrent Brain Cancer

More than a quarter of patients with recurrent high-grade glioma treated with the retroviral vector Toca 511 (vocimagene amiretrorepvec) combined with Toca FC (an extended-release formulation of fluorocytosine, a prodrug of fluorouracil [5-FU]) were alive more than 3 years after...

lung cancer

2-Year Survival Outcomes With Immunotherapy in Advanced NSCLC

Analysis of 2-year overall survival with nivolumab (Opdivo) vs docetaxel in the phase III CheckMate 017 and 057 trials showed a continued survival benefit with nivolumab in patients with previously treated advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The findings were reported by Horn et al...

breast cancer

Potential Risk Activities and Breast Cancer–Related Lymphedema in Patients Undergoing Bilateral Surgery

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Asdourian et al found that several factors considered to pose an increased risk of lymphedema were not significantly associated with the occurrence of lymphedema among women undergoing bilateral breast cancer surgery. Study Details In the...

prostate cancer

Combination Therapy for Docetaxel-Pretreated Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer

The phase III AFFINITY trial has shown no survival benefit with the addition of the antisense oligonucleotide custirsen to cabazitaxel (Jevtana)/prednisone in patients with metastatic prostate cancer previously treated with docetaxel. These findings were reported in The Lancet Oncology by Beer et...

New Biosimilar Educational Materials for Health-Care Professionals From the FDA

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced the release of new educational materials for health-care professionals about biosimilar and interchangeable products. The agency developed these educational materials  to help increase understanding about these important new types of...

skin cancer

FDA Accepts sBLA for Nivolumab in Resected, High-Risk, Advanced Melanoma

On October 16, Bristol-Myers Squibb announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted for priority review its supplemental Biologics License Application (sBLA) for nivolumab (Opdivo) to treat patients with melanoma who are at high risk of disease recurrence following complete...

symptom management

Early Study Suggests Potential Role of Paclitaxel in Peripheral Neuropathy and Possible Preventive Measures

In discovering how certain chemotherapy drugs cause peripheral neuropathy, researchers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have found a potential approach to preventing this common and troublesome side effect of cancer treatment. Their findings were published by Pease-Raissi et al in Neuron. The...

symptom management

FDA Approves Intravenous Rolapitant for Delayed Chemotherapy-Induced Nausea and Vomiting

On October 25, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved intravenous (IV) rolapitant (Varubi) in combination with other antiemetic agents in adults for the prevention of delayed nausea and vomiting associated with initial and repeat courses of emetogenic cancer chemotherapy, including,...

hepatobiliary cancer

CELESTIAL Trial: Cabozantinib Meets Primary Endpoint of Overall Survival in Patients With Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma

On October 16, Exelixis announced that its global phase III CELESTIAL trial met its primary endpoint of overall survival, with cabozantinib (Cabometyx) providing a statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvement in median overall survival compared to placebo in patients with...

solid tumors

Potential Treatment of Chordoma With PI3K Inhibitors

Patients with chordoma—a rare bone cancer of the skull and spine—could be helped by existing treatments, suggest scientists from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, University College London Cancer Institute, and the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Trust. In the largest...

palliative care

Changes in Opioid Prescription for Cancer Patients Referred to Outpatient Palliative Care

In a study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Haider et al found that the median morphine equivalent daily dose decreased significantly among cancer patients seen at MD Anderson Cancer Center’s outpatient palliative care clinic between 2010 and 2015. Use of hydrocodone decreased...

hematologic malignancies

Anti–T-Lymphocyte Globulin and Chronic GVHD-Free Survival in Unrelated Myeloablative HCT

A double-blind phase III trial has shown no benefit of anti–T-lymphocyte globulin (ATLG) vs placebo on chronic graft-vs-host disease (GVHD)-free survival in patients undergoing human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-matched unrelated myeloablative hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT). The study...

breast cancer

Extended Aromatase Inhibitor Therapy After Sequential Endocrine Therapy

In the Dutch phase III DATA trial reported in The Lancet Oncology by Tjan-Heinjen et al, a nonsignificant disease-free survival advantage was found for 6 vs 3 years of adjuvant aromatase inhibitor therapy after 2 to 3 years of tamoxifen in hormone receptor–positive early breast cancer....

breast cancer

FDA Grants Priority Review for Olaparib in Metastatic Breast Cancer

On October 18, AstraZeneca and Merck & Co announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted and granted Priority Review to a supplemental New Drug Application (sNDA) for the use of olaparib (Lynparza) tablets in patients with germline BRCA-mutated, HER2-negative...

palliative care
lung cancer

2017 ASCO Palliative Care: Yoga Can Be an Effective Supportive Therapy for People With Lung Cancer and Their Caregivers

In a feasibility trial of people with advanced lung cancer receiving radiation therapy and their caregivers, yoga was beneficial to both parties. These findings will be presented by Milbury et al at the upcoming 2017 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium in San Diego (Abstract 125). ...

palliative care
leukemia

2017 ASCO Palliative Care: People With Leukemia and Their Oncologists Have Vastly Different Perceptions of Prognosis

A study of 100 people with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) receiving chemotherapy found that patient and physician perceptions of treatment risk and the likelihood of a cure varied widely. Overall, patients tended to overestimate both the risk of dying due to treatment and the likelihood of a cure....

breast cancer

MAF Amplification and Outcomes With Adjuvant Zoledronic Acid in Early Breast Cancer

An analysis from the phase III AZURE trial has shown that MAF-negative status was associated with a benefit and MAF-positive status, with a detriment of adjuvant zoledronic acid in early breast cancer. The analysis was reported by Coleman et al in The Lancet Oncology. Study Details The current...

skin cancer

Long-Term Outcomes With BRAF and MEK Inhibition in BRAF V600–Mutant Metastatic Melanoma

As reported by Long et al in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, a 5-year landmark analysis of patients receiving dabrafenib (Tafinlar) and trametinib (Mekinist) for BRAF V600–mutant metastatic melanoma shows persistent overall and progression-free survival benefits. Study Details The...

palliative care

2017 ASCO Palliative Care: Resilience Intervention Improves Quality of Life for Adolescents and Young Adults With Cancer

Although a cancer diagnosis is daunting at any age, adolescents and young adults (AYAs) with the disease often face unique challenges and are at risk for poor psychosocial outcomes than older patients. A randomized study investigating whether a brief, age-appropriate, skills-based intervention...

palliative care

2017 ASCO Palliative Care: Patients With Advanced Cancer Prefer Oncologists Not Use Computers in the Exam Room

Although the use of electronic health records in oncology care has led to improved care for patients, results from a new study show that oncologists need to be cautious about using computers during exam room visits, especially for patients with advanced cancer. The randomized study compared...

skin cancer

Effectiveness of Sentinel Lymph Node Biopsy in Patients With Newly Diagnosed Melanoma

Research presented at the 9th World Congress of Melanoma supports the updated guideline recommendation that sentinel lymph node biopsy be performed in more patients newly diagnosed with melanoma, as it has the potential to save lives due to the information the procedure provides. This biopsy can...

skin cancer

Intratumoral Plasmid IL-12 With Electroporation in Stage III/IV Melanoma

OncoSec Medical Incorporated presented new clinical data on ImmunoPulse IL-12 (intratumoral pIL-12 [tavokinogene telseplasmid] with electroporation) at the 9th World Congress of Melanoma. “We are excited to share updated data from our phase II clinical monotherapy trial with ImmunoPulse ...

skin cancer

Axl Inhibitor BGB324 in Combination With Trametinib Plus Dabrafenib or Pembrolizumab in Advanced Melanoma

BerGenBio ASA announced that the randomized phase Ib/II clinical study of the Axl inhibitor BGB324 in combination with either the MAP kinase inhibitors trametinib (Mekinist) plus dabrafenib (Tafinlar) or the immune checkpoint inhibitor pembrolizumab (Keytruda) in patients with advanced melanoma is...

lung cancer

FDA Accepts sBLA for Durvalumab in Locally Advanced Unresectable NSCLC

On October 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has accepted a supplemental Biologics License Application (sBLA) for durvalumab (Imfinzi) for the treatment of patients with locally advanced (stage III) unresectable non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) whose disease has not progressed ...

kidney cancer

Enhancer of Zeste Homolog 2 Expression and Prognosis in Localized Renal Cell Carcinoma

As reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Ho et al found that tumor-based enhancer of zeste homolog 2 (EZH2) gene or protein expression was independently predictive of prognosis in localized clear cell renal cell carcinoma. EZH2 is a chromatin remodeler implicated in the pathogenesis of...

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