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sarcoma

Sarcoma Management Is Slowly Evolving

THE BACKBONE treatment for soft-tissue sarcomas has long been anthracycline-based, but new approaches are coming. These novel strategies were discussed at the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and Oncology Conference in Sea Island, Georgia, by Melinda L. Yushak, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor ...

cns cancers

Small Steps Forward in Brain Tumor Therapy

SOME RECENT ADVANCES in the treatment of brain tumors are promising, but others are less so, according to Jeffrey J. Olson, MD, Professor of Neurosurgery at Emory University, Atlanta. At the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and Oncology Conference, held in Sea Island, Georgia, and...

skin cancer

Is Complete Lymphadenectomy Still Standard of Care in Melanoma?

DOES COMPLETE lymph node dissection for sentinel node–positive melanoma still have a role in the management of this disease? That’s debatable. Although it does not improve overall survival over observation alone, complete lymphadenectomy may have other benefits, according to a dialogue at the...

hematologic malignancies

Amyloidosis: Pearls for Simplifying the Diagnosis

AMYLOIDOSIS REMAINS a challenging and nuanced diagnosis. At the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and Oncology Conference, held in Sea Island, Georgia, Jonathan L. Kaufman, MD, discussed his approach to diagnosing amyloid light-chain amyloidosis. Dr. Kaufman is Associate Professor of...

hepatobiliary cancer

Hepatocellular Carcinoma: Current Thoughts on Liver Transplantation

LIVER TRANSPLANT offers the highest rates of long-term survival for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma, according to Maria Russell, MD, Assistant Professor of Surgery at Emory University, Atlanta. At the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and Oncology Conference at Sea Island, Georgia,...

skin cancer

Expert Point of View: Reinhard Dummer, MD, and Jeffrey Weber, MD, PhD

ASSUMING THE regimens evaluated in COMBI-AD and CheckMate 238 are both approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of high-risk resected melanoma, clinicians may be faced with a tough choice. ESMO experts and the study’s investigators weighed in on this issue in a lively...

skin cancer

Significant Improvement in Outcomes Reported With Adjuvant Therapy for Melanoma

FOR PATIENTS with malignant melanoma, the significant improvement in outcomes with targeted agents and antibodies against the programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1) has now been observed in the adjuvant setting. Two landmark studies presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2017 ...

gastrointestinal cancer

Positioning 177-Lu-Dotatate Therapy and 68-Ga-Dotatate Scans in Management of Neuroendocrine Tumors

The results of the phase III NETTER-1 trial, recently published in The New England Journal of Medicine,1 have been met with great interest by clinicians who treat neuroendocrine tumors. In patients with advanced midgut lesions, treatment with the radiopharmaceutical lutetium-177-Dotatate...

lung cancer

Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer: Emerging Concepts for Checkpoint Inhibitors

With checkpoint inhibitors vitally important in the treatment of advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), clinicians must become familiar with the nuances of their use. At the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and Oncology Conference in Sea Island, Georgia, Suresh S. Ramalingam, MD,...

gastrointestinal cancer

‘Sidedness’ in Colon Cancer: Using the Data in the Clinic

The evidence from clinical trials has established that “side matters” when it comes to colorectal cancer outcomes. How do clinicians use this information in their practices? Christina Wu, MD, of Emory University, shared her thoughts with attendees at the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and ...

hematologic malignancies
multiple myeloma

Multiple Myeloma: Researchers Are Digging Deeper Than Ever

Researchers are tackling multiple myeloma from many angles, and the result could be a flood of novel approaches soon within the oncologist’s reach, according to Kenneth C. Anderson, MD. At the 2017 Debates and Didactics in Hematology and Oncology Conference at Sea Island, Georgia, Dr. Anderson...

breast cancer

Triple-Negative Breast Cancer: Practical Approach, Promising Research

Triple-negative breast cancer has a reputation for being a particularly challenging malignancy, but breast cancer specialist Nancy Davidson, MD, Senior Vice President of the Clinical Research Division at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, put this in perspective in a recent...

colorectal cancer

New Data Reported on Vemurafenib, Vitamin D, Selective Internal Radiotherapy, and Circulating Tumor DNA in Colorectal Cancer

RESULTS OF the IDEA trial, which showed that some patients with stage III low-risk colon cancer may require less oxaliplatin therapy (see the June 25 issue of The ASCO Post), were among the findings highlighted at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting Plenary Session. Other studies of interest in colorectal ...

colorectal cancer

Expert Point of View: Frank Sinicrope, MD

FRANK SINICROPE, MD, Professor of Oncology and Co-Leader of the GI Cancer Program at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, said CHARTA addressed whether patient outcomes can be improved with a triplet regimen plus bevacizumab (Avastin) vs a standard doublet plus bevacizumab. This was based upon the finding...

colorectal cancer

More Support for FOLFOXIRI/Bevacizumab in Advanced Colorectal Cancer

A RANDOMIZED head-to-head comparison in patients with advanced colorectal cancer found that a regimen of FOLFOXIRI (fluorouracil/leucovorin, oxaliplatin, irinotecan) plus bevacizumab (Avastin) was more effective than a regimen of FOLFOX (fluorouracil/leucovorin, oxaliplatin) plus bevacizumab as...

sarcoma
cns cancers
lymphoma
survivorship

In Case You Missed It: Short Takes on Current Cancer Research

MOST ONCOLOGISTS are familiar with the findings of the plenary sessions featured at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting, with topics ranging from the duration of adjuvant oxaliplatin-based therapy in stage III colon cancer to patient-reported outcomes for symptom monitoring during routine cancer...

hematologic malignancies
symptom management
supportive care
head and neck cancer
pancreatic cancer
solid tumors

NCCN Panelists Relay ‘What’s Hot’ in Their Fields

AT THE NATIONAL Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®) 22nd Annual Conference, experts from several fields met with journalists to highlight “what’s hot” in their specialties. The ASCO Post captured that conversation.  Myeloproliferative Neoplasms Guidelines  NCCN HAS LAUNCHED new NCCN Clinical...

breast cancer

Digital Tomosynthesis vs Mammography in Unmasking Breast Cancer

DIGITAL TOMOSYNTHESIS is rapidly replacing full-field digital mammography, because “it allows a more efficient diagnostic workflow and leads to a more confident interpretation,” according to Elizabeth A. Morris, MD, FACR, Chief of the Breast Imaging Service, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, ...

breast cancer
cns cancers

Breast Cancer and Brain Metastases: Whole-Brain Radiotherapy May Not Be the Answer

FOR PATIENTS WITH BREAST CANCER who have metastases to the central nervous system (CNS), clinicians should think twice before administering whole-brain radiotherapy, according to Kimberly Blackwell, MD, Professor of Medicine and Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology at Duke University Medical...

lung cancer

Expert Point of View: Anne Tsao, MD, and John Heymach, MD, PhD

STUDY DISCUSSANT Anne Tsao, MD, Director of the Mesothelioma Program at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, indicated the response rates seen in the MAPS-2 trial are comparable to those demonstrated in smaller studies of pembrolizumab (Keytruda). She considered the...

lung cancer

Checkpoint Inhibitors May Prove to Be Effective in Mesothelioma

CHECKPOINT INHIBITION was effective against malignant pleural mesothelioma in the MAPS-2 study of the French Cooperative Thoracic Intergroup. At the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting, researchers reported a disease control rate of up to 50% when patients were treated with immunotherapy after relapse in a...

gynecologic cancers

Expert Point of View: Ritu Salani, MD, MBA

STUDY DISCUSSANT Ritu Salani, MD, MBA, of The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, Columbus, agreed with the LION trial investigators.  “Omitting systemic lymph node dissection in patients who have both radiographic and clinically negative lymph nodes is acceptable,” she said. “I always...

gynecologic cancers

Study Supports Omission of Lymphadenectomy in Node-Negative Advanced Ovarian Cancer

SYSTEMATIC LYMPHADENECTOMY in patients with advanced ovarian cancer and complete resection offered no improvement in progression-free or overall survival in the Gynecologic Cancer Intergroup’s LION trial, reported at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting by Philipp Harter, MD, PhD, of the German...

colorectal cancer

Expert Point of View: Steven J. Cohen, MD, and Josep Tabarnero, MD, PhD

STEVEN J. COHEN, MD, Director of the Rosenfeld Cancer Center at Jefferson Health/Abington Hospital, Abington, Pennsylvania, and Vice Chair of Medical Oncology at Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson, and Josep Tabernero, MD, PhD, Head of Medical Oncology and the Gastrointestinal Tumors and...

colorectal cancer

Tumor ‘Sidedness’ in Colon Cancer: Studies Look for Explanations

TUMOR “SIDEDNESS” in colon cancer has become a topic of great interest, after right-sided tumors were shown to have a worse prognosis than left-sided ones and biologics were found to differ in efficacy based on side. At the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting, studies explored why this might be so.  Three...

symptom management

Expert Point of View: Joshua Jones, MD

ASCO EXPERT Joshua Jones, MD, Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, commented on the study at a press briefing.  “This is a case where less is more. This is an important study and the first to show equal outcomes and meaningful...

symptom management

Radiation Therapy for Spinal Cord Compression: One Treatment Is Sufficient

SPINAL CORD COMPRESSION associated with metastatic cancer can be effectively treated with a single dose of radiotherapy, according to the results of a phase III British study that showed multiple radiotherapy doses to be no better than one treatment.1  Up to 10% of all patients with cancer will...

skin cancer
cns cancers

Expert Point of View: Lynn Schuchter, MD

DISCUSSANT LYNN SCHUCHTER, MD, the C. Willard Professor of Medicine at the Abramson Cancer Center at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, said the findings herald “a new era on two fronts…. Systemic therapy as initial treatment for patients with asymptomatic central nervous system (CNS)...

skin cancer
cns cancers

Drug Combinations Prove Effective Against Melanoma Brain Metastases

STUDIES PRESENTED at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting have shown that for melanoma that metastasizes to the brain, the combined use of checkpoint inhibitors and targeted agents can be effective.  In COMBI-MB, 58% of patients responded intracranially to the BRAF inhibitor dabrafenib (Tafinlar) plus the...

pancreatic cancer

Stereotactic Body Radiotherapy for Poor Performance Status Patients With Pancreatic Cancer

There are few data to guide the management of nonmetastatic pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma in patients who are elderly or have a poor performance status. Although most such patients are offered supportive care or gemcitabine alone, the addition of stereotactic body radiotherapy may improve...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Leisha A. Emens, MD, PhD

STUDY DISCUSSANT Leisha A. Emens, MD, PhD, of Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy at Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, entitled her remarks, “Target Practice in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer,” referring to the fact that there is currently no validated target in this aggressive...

breast cancer

Potent PARP Inhibitor Moves Ahead in BRCA-Mutated Breast Cancer

TALAZOPARIB, a novel inhibitor of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP), showed encouraging efficacy in breast cancer patients with BRCA1/2 mutations in the phase II ABRAZO trial, presented at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting by Nicholas C. Turner, MD, of the Royal Marsden Hospital and The Institute of...

multiple myeloma

Expert Point of View: Michael S. Sabel, MD; Marcela Maus, MD, PhD; and Carl June, MD

"We are now seeing the merger of immunotherapy with precision medicine. This is the epitome of personalized medicine,” said ASCO-invited expert Michael S. Sabel, MD, Chief of the Division of Surgical Oncology at University of Michigan Health Systems, Ann Arbor. He called the effort to target...

multiple myeloma

CAR T-Cell Therapy in Multiple Myeloma Yields 100% Response Rate

Chinese investigators reported that 100% of patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma responded to autologous chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell therapy, and 14 of 19 (74%) who were followed for a median of 4 months achieved a stringent complete response and have not recurred.1...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Leisha A. Emens, MD, PhD

Leisha A. Emens, MD, PhD, of the Bloomberg~Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy at Johns Hopkins University, commented on the promise of anti–programmed cell death protein 1/programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-1/PD-L1) agents in triple-negative breast cancer. She noted that “an emerging theme...

breast cancer

Pembrolizumab Moving Forward in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

In the treatment of triple-negative breast cancer, checkpoint inhibition is making inroads in both early- and late-stage disease, and the line of treatment and expression of the programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) could be important in determining outcomes, according to studies reported at the...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Harold Burstein, MD, Carey Anders, MD, and William Sikov, MD

Several breast cancer experts weighed in on the findings of the APHINITY trial. At an ASCO press briefing, Harold Burstein, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and breast cancer specialist at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, pointed out that investigators estimated a ...

breast cancer

Positive Results for APHINITY, but Value of Benefit of Dual HER2 Blockade Questioned

The results of the long-awaited APHINITY trial are in, and although the phase III study met its primary endpoint, it failed to establish dual HER2 blockade as the optimal adjuvant treatment for early HER2-positive breast cancer. After 3 years of follow-up, the addition of pertuzumab (Perjeta) to...

bladder cancer

Strides Being Made in Advanced Urothelial Cancer

According to Srikala S. Sridhar, MD, MSc, FRCPC, of the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, Toronto, Canada, “It’s an exciting time in the field of urothelial cancer,” thanks to the emergence of new therapies such as the immune checkpoint inhibitors and other approaches that aim to improve both...

solid tumors

Expert Point of View: Sumanta Kumar Pal, MD and John V. Heymach, MD, PhD

ASCO spokespersons at the press briefing lauded the results with larotrectinib and called for broader testing for tropomyosin receptor kinase fusions.  The data for larotrectinib “bring us into a new era where treatment is truly based on mutation, not location,” said Sumanta Kumar Pal, MD, a...

solid tumors

Novel Tropomyosin Receptor Kinase Inhibitor Yields High Response Rates Across Tumor Types

Larotrectinib, an oral inhibitor of tropomyosin receptor kinase, showed “striking” activity in adult and pediatric patients with the genetic aberrations known as tropomyosin receptor kinase (TRK) fusion, researchers reported at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting.1 Of 55 patients treated with...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Richard S. Finn, MD and Ingrid A. Mayer, MD

Richard S. Finn, MD, of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Los Angeles, commented on MONARCH 2 and the field of cyclin-dependent kinase 4/6 (CDK4/6) inhibition in general in an interview with The ASCO Post. “MONARCH 2 is confirmatory for the role of CDK4/6 inhibition in estrogen...

breast cancer

Abemaciclib Plus Fulvestrant Delays Breast Cancer Progression in MONARCH 2

In the treatment of metastatic estrogen receptor–positive breast cancer, a highly significant 45% reduction in progression was achieved with abemaciclib, combined with fulvestrant (Faslodex), in the global phase III MONARCH 2 trial, reported at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting by George W. Sledge, MD,...

colorectal cancer

Expert Point of View: Cathy Eng, MD, FACP and Alfred Neugut, MD, PhD

Cathy Eng, MD, FACP, the Sophie Caroline Steves Distinguished Professor in Cancer Research at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, said the trial demonstrates “the challenge of analyzing six individually conducted studies in a pooled analysis.”  The study’s “potential...

gastrointestinal cancer

Some Patients With Stage III Low-Risk Colon Cancer May Require Less Oxaliplatin Therapy

Patients with stage III colon cancer considered at low risk for recurrence may be treated effectively—and incur less neurotoxicity—with 3 months of an oxaliplatin-based regimen as compared with the standard 6 months, according to the results of the International Duration Evaluation of Adjuvant...

breast cancer

Targeting the Androgen Receptor in Breast Cancer

One of the most active areas of research in breast cancer involves the targeting of the androgen receptor. Trials underway for androgen receptor antagonists and modulators, alone and in various combinations of available agents and novel therapies, are yielding encouraging early results. At the 2017 ...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Michael Berry, MD

Michael Berry, MD, a breast surgeon who is Director of the Margaret West Comprehensive Breast Center at The West Cancer Center, Memphis, told the The ASCO Post that these findings “echo what surgeons already know,” which is that lymphedema is a result of multiple insults to the axilla. But one...

breast cancer
symptom management

Lymphedema Risk: It’s Not Just About the Surgery

In a study from the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota, the risk of lymphedema in a population-based breast cancer cohort was related to multimodality therapy and not axillary surgery alone, investigators reported at the American Society of Breast Surgeons (ASBrS) Annual Meeting.1 “Most patients...

colorectal cancer

Expert Point of View: Manish Shah, MD and Daniel F. Hayes, MD, FACP, FASCO

Manish Shah, MD, Director of Gastrointestinal Oncology at NewYork-Presbyterian and Weill Cornell Medicine, was impressed with the findings of the two subanalyses of CALGB 89803.  “The study found a 46% reduction in the risk of recurrence with two servings of tree nuts a week, and that’s more than ...

colorectal cancer

Tree Nut Consumption May Improve Outcomes in Stage III Colon Cancer

Tree nut consumption, as well as a generally healthy lifestyle, significantly reduced the risk of cancer recurrence and death in patients with stage III colon cancer treated in the Cancer and Leukemia Group B (CALGB) 89803 trial, researchers reported at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting. Two subanalyses ...

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