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gastrointestinal cancer

Expert Point of View: Heinz-Josef Lenz, MD

Heinz-Josef Lenz, MD, of the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, said the results of the ONO-4538 trial were impressive in light of this challenging patient population. “You see a significant benefit in a highly refractory gastric cancer population,” he said. Dr. Lenz cautioned:...

gastrointestinal cancer

Nivolumab, as Salvage, Improves Overall Survival in Gastric Cancer

Gastric cancer can apparently be added to the growing list of malignancies for which drugs targeting the programmed cell death protein 1 (PD‑1) receptor are effective, according to the results of the phase III ONO-4538 investigation conducted in Asia and presented at the 2017 Gastrointestinal...

colorectal cancer

Expert Point of View: Frank A. Sinicrope, MD

Frank A. Sinicrope, MD, Professor of Medicine and Oncology at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, told The ASCO Post that the regimen of irinotecan/cetuximab (Erbitux)/­vemurafenib (Zelboraf) could be an important approach to treating this challenging tumor subtype. “BRAF-mutated tumors have a...

colorectal cancer

Dual Inhibition Proves Effective for BRAF-Mutated Colorectal Tumors

In patients with metastatic colorectal cancer who have mutations in BRAF V600, the addition of the BRAF inhibitor vemurafenib (Zelboraf) to cetuximab ­(Erbitux) and irinotecan significantly improved progression-free survival, results of the phase II Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) 1406 trial have...

multiple myeloma

Antiretroviral Agent Makes Strong Showing in Refractory Multiple Myeloma

An antiretroviral drug that is used for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) demonstrated strong activity when combined with bortezomib (Velcade) in patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma in a small multicenter phase II study presented at the 2016 American Society of Hematology (ASH)...

lymphoma

Expert Point of View: Anas Younes, MD

Anas Younes, MD, Chief of the Lymphoma Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, commented on the brentuximab vedotin (Adcetris)/nivolumab (Opdivo) combination studies, noting that complete response rates of 60% are “impressive.” “It seems that in the pretransplant setting, the...

lymphoma

Brentuximab Vedotin Plus Nivolumab Highly Active in Relapsed Classical Hodgkin Lymphoma

Response rates of 90% to 100% were achieved in early studies evaluating the combination of brentuximab vedotin (Adcetris) and nivolumab (Opdivo) in relapsed or refractory classical Hodgkin lymphoma. The findings were presented at the 2016 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting &...

multiple myeloma

Expert Point of View: Philip ­McCarthy, MD

The ASCO Post asked Philip ­McCarthy, MD, Professor of Oncology and Internal Medicine at Roswell Park Cancer, Buffalo, and Director of the Blood and Marrow Transplant Center there, to comment on these study findings. He first addressed the need to study earlier intervention for smoldering ...

multiple myeloma

High Response Rates to Triplet Therapy in Smoldering Myeloma

High-risk patients with smoldering multiple myeloma responded to a regimen of elotuzumab (Empliciti), lenalidomide (Revlimid), and dexamethasone, in a multicenter phase II study led by Irene Ghobrial, MD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston.1 “The high response rates among this patient...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Sara Hurvitz, MD; Mothaffar Rimawi, MD; and Carlos L. Arteaga, MD

Sara Hurvitz, MD, Director of the Breast Oncology Program at the University of California, Los Angeles, Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, commented that in the United States, a bone mineral density test can help identify candidates for bone-modifying agents. “We look at women who are going on...

breast cancer

Ibandronate Fails to Improve Disease-Free Survival in Early Breast Cancer Patients—but With Favorable Trends

Addition of the oral bisphosphonate ibandronate to endocrine therapy did not significantly improve disease-free survival in patients with early breast cancer, according to the first results from the Dutch TEAM IIb trial presented at the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.1 The results were...

breast cancer

Breast Cancer Experts Question New Recommendations for 21-Gene Recurrence Score Assay

At the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, a group of breast cancer experts made a case for using the 21-gene Oncotype DX Breast Recurrence Score Assay in node-positive patients, despite ASCO’s latest recommendations to restrict it to node-negative estrogen receptor–positive patients. The...

breast cancer

Selected Abstracts From the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium

Each year, The ASCO Post asks Jame Abraham, MD, Director of the Breast Oncology Program at Taussig Cancer Institute and Co-Director of the Cleveland Clinic Comprehensive Breast Cancer Program, to give his picks for the most important research presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium....

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Steven Vogl, MD

Presentation of the PERTAIN study data by lead author Grazia Arpino, MD, PhD, was met with high interest at the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. Steven Vogl, MD, of the Bronx, New York, commented, “This is a very complicated study for me, but it seems that at least half your patients got...

breast cancer

Pertuzumab, Trastuzumab, Plus Aromatase Inhibitor Beneficial in Metastatic Breast Cancer

In the phase II PERTAIN study of locally advanced or metastatic hormone receptor–positive, HER2-positive breast cancer patients, the addition of pertuzumab (Perjeta) to a regimen of trastuzumab (Herceptin) and an aromatase inhibitor in the first-line setting significantly improved progression-free ...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Howard A. “Skip” Burris, MD

Howard A. “Skip” Burris, MD, President of Clinical Operations and Chief Medical Officer at Sarah Cannon Research Institute, Nashville, commented on the poster presentation for The ASCO Post. He said the results “fit the whole paradigm” that is desired for triple-negative breast cancer, which is to ...

breast cancer

Novel Antibody-Drug Conjugate Targets Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

The antibody-drug conjugate sacituzumab govitecan (IMMU-132) produced high objective response rates, many of them quite durable, in a multicenter study of heavily pretreated patients with metastatic triple-negative breast cancer, presented at the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.1 Trop-2 is ...

breast cancer

Pathologic Complete Response Not Boosted by Addition of Estrogen Deprivation to Chemotherapy and Dual HER2 Blockade

The addition of estrogen deprivation to neoadjuvant chemotherapy and HER2 blockade did not enhance the achievement of pathologic complete responses in women with early-stage breast cancer, according to the results of the NRG Oncology/NSABP B-52 trial reported at the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer...

leukemia

Expert Point of View: Mikkael A. Sekeres, MD, MS

Mikkael A. Sekeres, MD, MS, Director of the Leukemia Program at the Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Center in Ohio, commented on vadastuximab talirine in newly diagnosed acute myeloid leukemia (AML). He noted that the drug is similar to gemtuzumab ozogamicin, another antibody-drug conjugate that...

leukemia

Vadastuximab Talirine Shows Early Promise in Newly Diagnosed Acute Myeloid Leukemia

The investigational CD33-directed antibody-drug conjugate vadastuximab talirine yielded high overall and complete response rates when combined with standard “7+3” chemotherapy for patients newly diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia.1 Results from this phase Ib study were presented at the 2016...

multiple myeloma

Expert Point of View: Sergio A. Giralt, MD

Sergio A. Giralt, MD, Chief of the Adult Bone Marrow Transplant Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York, and the Melvin Berlin Family Chair in Multiple Myeloma, commented on the findings of the StaMINA trial for The ASCO Post. He said the results of the largest randomized U.S....

multiple myeloma

Single Autotransplant Not Enhanced by Additional Interventions in Multiple Myeloma

Additional interventions following upfront autologous stem cell transplant in multiple myeloma did not further improve progression-free or overall survival over transplant alone in a multicenter study presented as a late-breaking abstract at the 2016 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual...

leukemia

Expert Point of View: Stephen P. Hunger, MD

Stephen P. Hunger, MD, Chief of the Division of Pediatric Oncology and Director of the Center for Childhood Cancer Research at The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, and the Jeffrey E. Perelman Distinguished Chair in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia,...

leukemia

Reduced-Intensity Chemotherapy Leads to More Relapses in Childhood ALL

Children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) considered at standard risk for relapse should continue to receive standard-intensity regimens, according to findings from the international randomized AIEOP-BFM ALL 2000 trial.1 A reduced-intensity treatment for children with ALL considered to have ...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Michael Gnant, MD

Michael Gnant, MD, Professor of Surgery at the Medical University of Vienna in Austria and President of the Austrian Breast & Colorectal Cancer Study Group, was the invited discussant of the three studies of extended endocrine therapy. “The trials did not reach the necessary statistical levels ...

breast cancer

Benefit of Extended Adjuvant Endocrine Therapy Not Upheld in Multiple Studies Reported in San Antonio

Extended endocrine therapy with an aromatase inhibitor did not improve disease-free survival in patients with hormone receptor–positive breast cancer enrolled in three studies presented at the 2016 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium. The results stand in contrast to the phase III National Cancer...

supportive care

What’s New in Antiemesis Therapy

The optimal use of new antiemetics was the subject of a presentation at the 14th Annual School of Breast Oncology, Emory University, Atlanta, by Frankie Ann Holmes, MD, Associate Director of Breast Oncology Research at Texas Oncology, Houston. “The science of nausea and vomiting is so compelling,...

breast cancer

Treatment of Early HER2-Positive Breast Cancer: One Size Does Not Fit All

Despite the routine use of HER2 blockade in early HER2-positive breast cancer, clinicians can always benefit from a refresher on key treatment considerations. Clinical pearls and controversial issues were the topic of a presentation at the 14th Annual School of Breast Oncology at Emory University, ...

skin cancer

Novel Immunotherapy Combinations May Be the Future of Melanoma Treatment

The future treatment of melanoma may rely on combinations of immunotherapy agents beyond the current checkpoint inhibitors, and they are entering clinical trials, according to Jeffrey Weber, MD, PhD, Deputy Director of the Laura and Isaac Perlmutter Cancer Center at New York University Langone...

lung cancer

Experts Consider the New Immunotherapy Paradigm in Advanced Lung Cancer

One immune checkpoint inhibitor has now moved to the front of the line for treating advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Based on pivotal studies presented at the 2016 European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress, pembrolizumab (Keytruda) became a first-line option, and it is...

issues in oncology
lung cancer
gastrointestinal cancer
prostate cancer
colorectal cancer

At ESMO 2016, Many Phase III Trials Fail to Meet Primary Endpoints

The 2016 European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress revealed many important positive findings from key trials in a number of tumor types, but many highly anticipated phase III trials in advanced disease failed to meet their primary endpoints. The ASCO Post has summarized several of these ...

Expert Point of View: Florian Lordick, MD

Florian Lordick, MD, Professor of Oncology and Director of the University Cancer Center in Leipzig, Germany, offered some critical evaluation of the two studies. AGITG Phase II Trial For the AGITG’s phase II DOCTOR trial, he emphasized the need to show the impact on survival outcomes for...

gastroesophageal cancer

Locally Advanced Esophageal Cancer Outcomes Improved With Neoadjuvant Therapy

In studies presented at the 2016 European Society for Surgical Oncology (ESMO) Congress, two different neoadjuvant treatment approaches improved the outcomes of patients with esophageal cancer. Investigators from the Australasian Gastro-Intestinal Trials Group (AGITG) reported that the addition of...

lung cancer
skin cancer

Numerous ESMO Presentations Focused on Anti–PD-1 Therapy in Lung Cancer and Melanoma

The 2016 European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress was jam-packed with studies of the anti–programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) antibodies in non–small cell lung cancer and melanoma, where they have clearly changed the treatment paradigm. Here is a roundup of some of those trials,...

Expert Point of View: Alice T. Shaw, MD, PhD

Commenting on ASCEND-5, Alice T. Shaw, MD, PhD, Director of Thoracic Oncology at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, noted that it is the first randomized study to examine how a second-generation anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK) inhibitor compares to standard second-line...

lung cancer

Studies Confirm Ceritinib’s Benefit in ALK-Positive Patients

For patients with advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) harboring the ALK gene rearrangement, ceritinib (Zykadia) provided longer progression-free survival than chemotherapy in patients previously treated with chemotherapy and crizotinib (Xalkori), but gastrointestinal toxicity was...

Expert Point of View: Paul Baas, MD, PhD

Invited discussant Paul Baas, MD, PhD, of The Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam, first commented on the need for measures to improve outcomes in early-stage non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). “Even in stage I patients, we still have a failure rate of 30% to 40% at 5 years, and that...

lung cancer

Neoadjuvant Nivolumab Appears Safe and Feasible in Lung Cancer

Neoadjuvant immunotherapy with the programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) inhibitor nivolumab (Opdivo) is safe and feasible in early-stage non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The results come from the first report of PD-1 blockade prior to surgery in this tumor, according to Patrick Forde, MD, of...

hematologic malignancies

Optimizing Allogeneic Stem Cell Transplantation in Myelofibrosis

Allogeneic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation is the only potentially curative treatment for myelofibrosis. The ASCO Post asked an expert in this field, Ayalew Tefferi, MD, how and when he uses stem cell transplant in myelofibrosis, which is a topic he outlined in greater detail in the...

pancreatic cancer

Let’s Win: Innovative Online Community Offers Guidance to Patients With Pancreatic Cancer and Their Families

Let’s Win is an online community for persons with pancreatic cancer (www.letswinpc.org), but it is far more than a typical support group. Let’s Win propels interested users toward cutting-edge research, based on its founders’ commitment that no patient with pancreatic cancer should settle on the...

Expert Point of View: Olivier Michielin, MS, MD, PhD

Olivier Michielin, MS, MD, PhD, Head of Personalized Analytical Oncology and the Melanoma Clinic at Lausanne University Hospital in Switzerland, said the study was well designed, well conducted, and addressed an important clinical question “at the time of its inception.” But he agreed with Dr....

skin cancer

Study Looks for Optimal Dosing of Single-Agent Ipilimumab in Metastatic Melanoma

There has been debate as to the optimal dose of single-agent ipilimumab (Yervoy) in metastatic melanoma. A phase III study presented at the 2016 European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress—the first to directly compare these doses—concluded that 10 mg/kg is more effective, but also more...

Expert Point of View: Celeste Lebbé, MD

Invited discussant Celeste Lebbé, MD, of the Hospital Saint Louis in Paris, noted that the study met its primary endpoints and produced “very impressive data”; however, “major toxicity” was a concern. She said that in this small study of 18 patients (10 for efficacy), several lessons were learned: ...

skin cancer

Small Study Tests Dual Checkpoint Blockade in High-Risk Stage III Melanoma

As neoadjuvant or adjuvant therapy for stage III melanoma patients with palpable disease, the combination of ipilimumab (Yervoy) plus nivolumab (Opdivo) was shown to be a promising, though also toxic, combination in a phase Ib study reported at the 2016 European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) ...

pancreatic cancer

Vaccines May Boost Immune Responsiveness of Pancreatic Tumors

Pancreatic cancer has been notably unresponsive to immunotherapeutic approaches, but a Stand Up 2 Cancer Dream Team believes their research can change that. Team co-leader Elizabeth Jaffee, MD, Deputy Director of the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, ...

pancreatic cancer

Scientists Are Boosting Immune Responses in Pancreatic Tumors

The successes observed with various immune oncologic treatment approaches have largely bypassed pancreatic cancer, but this may be about to change, based on emerging insights into how and why these tumors evade attacks by T cells. At the 2nd International Cancer Immunotherapy Conference, two...

skin cancer

Combination Strategies Harness the Power of the Oncolytic Virus Talimogene Laherparepvec

The injectable oncolytic immunotherapy talimogene laherparepvec (also known as T-VEC, Imlygic) may become a valuable component of combination immunotherapy approaches in melanoma, a strategy believed to help overcome resistance of tumors to single-agent immunotherapies. “[Talimogene laherparepvec] ...

Expert Point of View: Jean-Charles Soria, MD, PhD

A number of lung cancer specialists were anxious to comment on the positive findings of KEYNOTE-024 and were equally perplexed about the negative results of CheckMate-026. All agreed that the overall survival benefit makes pembrolizumab (Keytruda) a game-changer for the first-line treatment of...

lung cancer

Pembrolizumab, but Not Nivolumab, Improves Outcomes in Front-Line Setting for PD-L1–Positive Advanced NSCLC

Checkpoint inhibitors have revolutionized the treatment of advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), but evidence of their benefit was restricted to the second-line setting. However, early-phase trials with both pembrolizumab (Keytruda) and nivolumab (Opdivo) demonstrated favorable results in...

Expert Point of View: Corey J. Langer, MD

Corey J. Langer, MD, Director of Thoracic Oncology and Professor of Medicine at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, discussed the OAK study with The ASCO Post. Robust Data “In some ways, the OAK data are some of the most robust we have seen in the second-line setting. For ...

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