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Norman E. Sharpless, MD, Sworn in as Director of the National Cancer Institute

Norman E. “Ned” Sharpless, MD, took the oath of office late Tuesday, October 17, 2017, to become the 15th Director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). He succeeds Harold E. Varmus, MD, who stepped down as Director in March 2015. Douglas R. Lowy, ...

Norman E. Sharpless, MD, Sworn in as Director of the National Cancer Institute

Norman E. “Ned” Sharpless, MD, took the oath of office late Tuesday, October 17, 2017, to become the 15th Director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). He succeeds Harold E. Varmus, MD, who stepped down as Director in March 2015....

health-care policy

Amended Health Insurance Rule Threatens Key Component of Standard Cancer Treatment

On October 12, ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, issued the following statement: The Trump administration's move to expand the rights of employers to opt out of the requirement for contraceptive coverage would have unexpected and deleterious consequences for patients of childbearing age...

issues in oncology

ASCO Concerned With MIPS Part B Reimbursement Assessments in QPP Proposal

ASCO submitted comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on its proposed rule outlining changes to the Quality Payment Program (QPP) for 2018. In a letter to CMS Administrator Seema Verma, ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, made recommendations regarding the two...

ASCO’s QOPI Certification Program™ Recognizes Three Oncology Practices in Spain

ASCO has announced that the first three practices in Spain have received Quality Oncology Practice Initiative (QOPI®) certification through the QOPI Certification Program™, LLC (QCP). The accreditations were given on September 8, at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2017 Congress in...

lung cancer

Combination Therapy for Previously Untreated BRAF V600E–Mutant Metastatic NSCLC

In a phase II trial, the combination of dabrafenib (Tafinlar) plus trametinib (Mekinist) produced durable responses in a cohort of patients with previously untreated BRAF V600E–mutant metastatic non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The findings were reported in The Lancet Oncology by...

Heart Disease, Cancer, Leading Causes of Death due to Noncommunicable Diseases, Global Study Finds

The Global Burden of Disease Study, published in The Lancet, finds that of noncommunicable diseases, cancer is the second-leading cause of death globally.1 The report also finds that deaths from cancer increased more than 17% between 2006 and 2016. The Global Burden of Disease Study is a...

ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson Seeks to Bring Personalized Medicine, Real-Time Data to Every Oncology Practice

Dedicating one’s career and livelihood to the pursuit of treating and possibly curing cancer is, for many, a decision that stems from deeply personal and, often, tragic experience. For 2017–2018 ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, the event that greatly influenced his decision was the...

ASCO Applauds NIH Director Francis Collins, MD, PhD, for Remaining in Critical Leadership Position

ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, released the following statement on June 8: ASCO congratulates Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD, on the announcement of his continued service as the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). A renowned researcher and skilled administrator, Dr....

ASCO Statement: Norman Sharpless, MD, Brings Proven Scientific Leadership to the National Cancer Institute

On June 12, ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, released the following statement: ASCO congratulates Norman “Ned” Sharpless, MD, on his appointment as Director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). ASCO is encouraged that NCI will have at its helm an accomplished researcher with...

Oncologist Barbara L. McAneny, MD, FASCO, MACP, Elected AMA President-Elect

Physicians gathered at the Annual Meeting of the American Medical Association (AMA) elected Barbara L. McAneny, MD, FASCO, MACP, an oncologist from Albuquerque, New Mexico, as the new President-Elect of the physicians’ organization. Following a year-long term as President-Elect, Dr. McAneny will...

lung cancer

Atezolizumab: Another Therapeutic Option for Patients With Previously Treated Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer

The OAK study—recently reported by Rittmeyer and colleagues and reviewed in this issue of The ASCO Post—is the first study to show patients with previously treated non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated with a humanized antibody (atezolizumab, Tecentriq) directed against the programmed cell...

health-care policy

ASCO Congratulates NIH Director Francis Collins on Remaining in Critical Leadership Position

ASCO President Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, released the following statement today: “ASCO congratulates Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD, on the announcement of his continued service as the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). A renowned researcher and skilled administrator, Dr....

lung cancer

Adjuvant Gefitinib Delays Recurrence in EGFR-Positive NSCLC

Adjuvant therapy with gefitinib (Iressa), an epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted agent, was more successful at preventing recurrence than standard-of-care chemotherapy, in a phase III study of patients with EGFR-positive non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).1 Gefitinib extended...

Bruce E. Johnson, MD, and Julie Vose, MD, MBA: A Conversation With ASCO’s 2017–2018 President

Julie Vose, MD, MBA, of the University of Nebraska Medical Center, and Bruce E. Johnson, MD, of the Lowe Center for Thoracic Oncology at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, discuss Dr. Johnson’s upcoming tenure as ASCO President and his goals for the year ahead.

lung cancer

ASCO President, Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, Participates in Key Research With EGFR Mutation in Lung Cancer

Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, 2017–2018 ASCO President, was born in St. Peter, Minnesota, and grew up on a rural dairy farm. “Neither of my parents had college degrees, but working on a dairy farm with them gave me a solid work ethic. I was working outside on the farm before I was 10 years old. In...

issues in oncology

Setting His Presidential Course on Making Precision Medicine a Reality for More Patients

Ensuring that all patients with cancer have access to the potential benefits of precision medicine regardless of where they are treated has been a primary goal of Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, since the concept was first introduced following completion of the Human Genome Project in 2003. Dr....

head and neck cancer

Expert Point of View: Denise A. Galloway, PhD

Denise A. Galloway, PhD, Associate Director, Human Biology Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, whose research focus is human papillomavirus (HPV), told The ASCO Post that these findings provide new data for the field. “I can’t think of a large study of oral HPV infection in...

My Year of Living Wonderfully: 12 Months as ASCO President

EACH YEAR, the ASCO President chooses a theme for his or her term, which is not a trivial pursuit. Trying to think up something novel and catchy, yet not schmaltzy, is quite a challenge. However, in my year as Chair of the Scientific Program Committee for the 2010 ASCO Annual Meeting, then during...

gynecologic cancers

ASCO 2017: HPV Vaccination May Reduce Oral HPV Infections but Is Still Underutilized

In one of the first large studies to explore the possible impact of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination on oral HPV infections, researchers found it may confer a high degree of protection. The study of young adults in the United States showed that the prevalence of high-risk HPV infection was...

lung cancer

ASCO 2017: Gefitinib Treatment Can Delay Recurrence of Intermediate-Stage Lung Cancer

The targeted therapy gefitinib (Iressa) appears more effective in preventing recurrence after lung cancer surgery than the standard of care, chemotherapy. In a phase III clinical trial, patients with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-positive, stage II to IIIA non–small cell lung cancer ...

health-care policy

ASCO 2017: Increase in Early-Stage Cancer Diagnoses After Implementation of the Affordable Care Act

An analysis of nearly 273,000 patients showed that between 2013 and 2014 there was a 1% increase in the percentage of breast, lung, and colorectal cancers diagnosed at the earliest, most treatable stage. Considering the thousands of people diagnosed with these cancers annually, a 1% increase in...

ASCO President-Elect Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, Reflects on Volunteer Service, Plans for Presidential Term

Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, began his term as ASCO President-Elect in June 2016 and will serve as 2017–2018 President. A thoracic cancer specialist, Dr. Johnson is Chief Clinical Research Officer and institute physician at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical...

lung cancer

Dabrafenib Plus Trametinib in BRAF V600E–Mutant Metastatic NSCLC

In a phase II trial reported in The Lancet Oncology, Planchard et al found that combined MAPK pathway inhibition with the BRAF inhibitor dabrafenib (Tafinlar) and the MEK inhibitor trametinib (Mekinist) resulted in a high response rate in patients with BRAF V600E–mutant non–small cell lung cancer...

lung cancer

Dabrafenib Plus Trametinib Shows Activity in BRAF V600E–Mutant Metastatic NSCLC

In a phase II trial reported in The Lancet Oncology, Planchard et al found that combined MAPK pathway inhibition with the BRAF inhibitor dabrafenib (Tafinlar) and the MEK inhibitor trametinib (Mekinist) resulted in a high response rate in patients with BRAF V600E–mutant non–small cell...

2016 ASCO Annual Meeting Planning Committees

The ASCO Annual Meeting highlights the latest research and treatment advances in oncology, with nearly 30,000 oncology professionals attending each year. ASCO wishes to acknowledge the volunteers on this year’s Cancer Education and Scientific Program Committees and thank them for their time and...

lung cancer

Dabrafenib Active in BRAF-Mutant Metastatic NSCLC

Planchard et al found that the BRAF kinase inhibitor dabrafenib (Tafinlar) produced responses in previously treated and untreated patients with BRAF-mutant metastatic non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), according to a phase II trial reported in The Lancet Oncology. Activating BRAF V600E...

Fellows of the American Society of Clinical Oncology: 2012 Recipients Will be Honored at ASCO Annual Meeting

Formerly called the ASCO Statesman Award, which launched in 2007, the new distinction of Fellow of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (FASCO) is designed to honor ASCO’s most active volunteer members. “The FASCO status represents recognition for the most dedicated volunteer members inside...

health-care policy

Policy Issues in Molecularly Targeted Therapy: The Science, the Money, the Applications

In the past decade, much new knowledge about the molecular underpinnings of cancer has accumulated, and the array of molecular aberrations in each individual tumor can be assessed through genomic sequencing and other tests. The rationale for and feasibility of developing molecularly targeted...

ASCO Announces Candidates for 2016 Election

Seventeen distinguished ASCO members have been selected by the ASCO Nominating Committee as candidates for open leadership positions within the Society. They include the office of President-Elect, four seats on the Society’s Board of Directors, and three seats on the ASCO Nominating Committee....

The Future of ASCO: President-Elect Candidates Share Their Vision

S. Gail Eckhardt, MD, FASCO, is a tenured Professor at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, where she also holds the Stapp Harlow Chair in Cancer Research. She has been a faculty member at the institution since 1999 and was Division Head of Medical Oncology from 2006–2014. Currently, she...

Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, Elected ASCO President for 2017–2018 Term

Bruce E. Johnson, MD, FASCO, has been elected President of ASCO for the term beginning in June 2017. He will take office as President-Elect during the ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago in June 2016. Additionally, four new members were elected to the ASCO Board of Directors, as well as three new...

lung cancer

Improved Progression-Free but Not Overall Survival With Addition of Maintenance Erlotinib to Bevacizumab After Chemotherapy Plus Bevacizumab in NSCLC

In the phase IIIB ATLAS trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Bruce E. Johnson, MD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and colleagues assessed the addition of maintenance erlotinib (Tarceva) to bevacizumab (Avastin) following chemotherapy plus bevacizumab in first-line treatment of ...

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