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solid tumors
breast cancer

Making Our Future Plans Happen Now

The following essay by Hope S. Rugo, MD, is adapted from The Big Casino: America’s Best Cancer Doctors Share Their Most Powerful Stories, which was coedited by Stan Winokur, MD, and Vincent Coppola and published in May 2014. The book is available on Amazon.com and thebigcasino.org. I was in...

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

Two Studies Show Scalp Cooling Reduces Hair Loss in Women Receiving Chemotherapy for Breast Cancer

An interim analysis of the SCALP trial, reported in JAMA by Julie Nangia, MD, of Baylor College of Medicine, and colleagues, showed that use of a scalp-cooling device significantly reduced hair loss in women receiving chemotherapy for stage I or II breast cancer compared with no scalp cooling.1 The ...

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

Abemaciclib Active in Metastatic Breast Cancer

In the single-arm phase II MONARCH 1 trial, the investigational cyclin-dependent kinase 4/6 (CDK4/6) inhibitor abemaciclib achieved an objective response in about 20% of heavily pretreated patients with metastatic hormone receptor–positive, HER2-negative breast cancer and a disease control rate of...

solid tumors

CDK4/6 Inhibitors: Where They Are Now and Where They Are Headed in the Future

Geoffrey I. Shapiro, MD, PhD, Director of the Early Drug Development Center at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, explained the current research initiatives involving cyclin D–dependent kinase (CDK) 4/6 inhibitors. Mechanism of Action How do CDK4/6 inhibitors work at the cellular level in...

breast cancer

Equivalent Response Rates With Trastuzumab or a Trastuzumab Biosimilar Plus Taxane in HER2-Positive Metastatic Breast Cancer

In part 1 of the Heritage study, a phase III equivalence trial reported in JAMA, Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, San Francisco, and colleagues found that treatment with trastuzumab (Herceptin) or a proposed trastuzumab biosimilar...

ASCO Honors Researchers, Scientists for Significant Advances in Cancer Treatment and Care

ASCO and the Conquer Cancer Foundation (CCF) proudly announce the winners of ASCO’s Special Awards, the Society’s highest honors, and the CCF Women Who Conquer Cancer Mentorship Award. The recipients of these awards include researchers, patient advocates, and global oncology leaders who have worked ...

symptom management

Dexamethasone Mouthwash in Preventing Everolimus-Related Stomatitis in Women With Breast Cancer

In the phase II SWISH study reported in The Lancet Oncology, Rugo et al found that use of a dexamethasone-based mouthwash may prevent everolimus-related stomatitis in postmenopausal women receiving everolimus (Afinitor) for hormone receptor–positive, HER2-negative metastatic breast cancer....

ASCO Honors Researchers and Scientists for Significant Advancements in Cancer Treatment and Care

ASCO and the Conquer Cancer Foundation of ASCO (CCF) have proudly announced the winners of ASCO's Special Awards, the Society's highest honors, and the CCF Women Who Conquer Cancer Mentorship Award. The recipients of these awards include researchers, patient advocates, and global oncology leaders...

breast cancer

Effect of Scalp Cooling on Hair Loss in Women Receiving Nonanthracycline Chemotherapy for Breast Cancer

In a prospective cohort study reported in JAMA, Rugo et al found that use of a scalp-cooling device reduced hair loss in women receiving nonanthracycline chemotherapy for early-stage breast cancer. Study Details In the study, 101 evaluable patients from 5 U.S. centers with stage I or II breast...

breast cancer

Equivalent Response Rates With Trastuzumab or Trastuzumab Biosimilar Plus Taxane in HER2-Positive Metastatic Breast Cancer

In part 1 of a phase III equivalence trial reported in JAMA, Rugo et al found that treatment with trastuzumab (Herceptin) or a proposed trastuzumab biosimilar in combination with a taxane produced similar overall response rates in patients with previously untreated metastatic HER2-positive breast...

palliative care

Research Highlights From the 2016 Palliative Care in Oncology Symposium

More than 650 attendees gathered in San Francisco on September 9 and 10 for the 2016 Palliative Care in Oncology Symposium, focusing on the theme of “Patient-Centered Care Across the Cancer Continuum.” Research presented during the Symposium demonstrated how integrating palliative care into cancer...

breast cancer

Clinical Trials Actively Recruiting Patients With Metastatic Breast Cancer

Pilot Study Title: Pilot Study of 18F-FLT-PET Imaging of the Brain in Patients With Metastatic Breast Cancer to the Brain Treated With Whole-Brain Radiation Therapy With or Without Sorafenib: Comparison With MR Imaging of the Brain Study Type: Pilot/interventional/parallel assignment Study Sponsor ...

breast cancer
symptom management

Dexamethasone Mouth Rinse Should Be Routine Part of Everolimus Treatment

Dexamethasone mouth rinse should be given prophylactically to prevent stomatitis associated with everolimus (Afinitor)/exemestane in metastatic breast cancer, according to Hope S. Rugo, MD, principal investigator of the SWISH trial and Director of Breast Oncology and Clinical Trials Education at...

breast cancer

Neoadjuvant Veliparib/Carboplatin and Neratinib ‘Graduate’ From Adaptive Randomization I-SPY 2 Trial in Early Breast Cancer

As reported by Hope S. Rugo, MD, and John W. Park, MD, both of the University of California, San Francisco, and colleagues in The New England Journal of Medicine, the multiarm adaptive randomization phase II I-SPY 2 trial has shown that the addition of veliparib/carboplatin and the addition of...

supportive care
symptom management

Scalp Cooling for Chemotherapy-Induced Alopecia Becoming Mainstream

Hair loss can be a devastating side effect of chemotherapy, but the recent U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of the DigniCap Cooling System and the growing acceptance of scalp-cooling methods in the United States may improve the quality of life for many patients receiving...

supportive care
symptom management
breast cancer

Use of Dexamethasone Mouthwash in Managing mTOR Inhibitor–Associated Stomatitis in Patients With Breast Cancer

Prophylactic use of dexamethasone mouthwash significantly minimized the incidence of all grades of stomatitis in postmenopausal women receiving everolimus (Afinitor, Zortress) and exemestane for the treatment of hormone receptor–positive metastatic breast cancer, according to data presented by...

breast cancer

ASCO Guideline on Endocrine Therapy for Hormone Receptor–Positive Metastatic Breast Cancer

As reported by Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California San Francisco Comprehensive Cancer Center, and colleagues in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, ASCO has released a clinical practice guideline on endocrine therapy for hormone receptor–positive metastatic breast cancer.1 The...

breast cancer

Trastuzumab Biosimilar Shows Efficacy and Safety Comparable to Reference Product in Phase III HERITAGE Trial

A new biosimilar version of the monoclonal antibody trastuzu­mab (Herceptin) is getting close to the finish line in the race to develop biosimilars in oncology. The new antibody, MYL-1401O, demonstrated comparable efficacy and safety compared with trastuzumab as front-line treatment of women with...

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...

breast cancer

ASCO Clinical Practice Guideline Update on Ovarian Suppression/Adjuvant Endocrine Therapy in Hormone Receptor–Positive Breast Cancer

As reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by Harold J. Burstein, MD, PhD, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, and colleagues, ASCO has released a clinical practice guideline update on ovarian suppression as part of the extant guideline on adjuvant endocrine therapy in hormone...

breast cancer

Hope S. Rugo, MD, on HER2+ Breast Cancer: Findings on a Trastuzumab Biosimilar

Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California, San Francisco, discusses phase III study results on a new possible alternative to trastuzumab for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer: the biosimilar known as Myl-1401O (Abstract LBA503).

breast cancer

ASCO 2016: Biosimilar Shows Comparable Efficacy and Safety to Trastuzumab in HER2-Positive Metastatic Breast Cancer

A biosimilar trastuzumab antibody (MYL-1401O) is comparable in efficacy and safety to trastuzumab (Herceptin) in women with HER2-positive advanced breast cancer, according to a randomized phase III study. The response rates were comparable among women who received trastuzumab and among...

breast cancer

ASCO Guideline on Endocrine Therapy for Hormone Receptor–Positive Metastatic Breast Cancer

As reported by Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California San Francisco Comprehensive Cancer Center, and colleagues in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, ASCO has released a clinical practice guideline on endocrine therapy for hormone receptor–positive metastatic breast cancer. The...

breast cancer
symptom management

DigniCap Scalp Cooling System Now Available for Women With Breast Cancer at 10 U.S. Cancer Treatment Centers

Dignitana Inc. announced today that the DigniCap scalp cooling system, which was cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in December 2015 to effectively reduce the likelihood of chemotherapy-induced hair loss in women with breast cancer, is now available at 10 cancer treatment...

breast cancer

Hope S. Rugo, MD, on the Phase II FIRST Study

Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California, San Francisco, discusses abstract S6-04, “Fulvestrant 500 mg vs anastrozole as first-line treatment for advanced breast cancer: Overall survival from the phase II FIRST study,” presented by John F.R. Robertson, MD.

breast cancer

Hope S. Rugo, MD, on Dietary Intervention as Adjuvant Breast Cancer Therapy

Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California, San Francisco, discusses abstract S5-08, “Final survival analysis from the randomized Women's Intervention Nutrition Study (WINS) evaluating dietary intervention as adjuvant breast cancer therapy,” presented by Rowan T. Chlebowski, MD.

breast cancer

Immunotherapy for Breast Cancer: Early Lackluster Study Results yet Promise Remains

Immunotherapy is at the forefront of exciting new approaches to cancer, with excellent and long-lasting responses in metastatic melanoma and non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and several immunotherapy agents now approved for those malignancies by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The...

breast cancer

CLEOPATRA Trial Finds Dual HER2 Blockade Improves Progression-free Survival in Advanced Breast Cancer

Women with HER2-positive advanced breast cancer are much less likely to have disease progression or die when two agents are used instead of one to target the HER2 signaling pathway, investigators for the international phase III CLEOPATRA trial found. The 808 women studied were randomly assigned to...

breast cancer

BOLERO-2: Everolimus Thwarts Resistance to Hormonal Therapy in Advanced Breast Cancer

Adding an inhibitor of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) to hormonal therapy for advanced breast cancer effectively circumvents resistance, suggest updated results of the randomized BOLERO-2 trial. With a median follow-up of 12.5 months, the likelihood of disease progression or death among...

breast cancer

Expert Point of View: Bevacizumab Progression-free Survival Benefit Upheld in AVEREL Trial

Modest benefit reported from AVEREL1 triggered comments among trialists about the future of bevacizumab (Avastin) in breast cancer. “Although there’s controversy about the recent revoking of FDA approval of bevacizumab for metastatic breast cancer, I think there is a consensus in our disappointment ...

breast cancer

Older Breast Cancer Drugs Prove Superior to Newer Ones

In the treatment of metastatic breast cancer, established older agents outperformed newer, more expensive drugs in two studies that made news at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting. Microtubule Inhibitors In the phase III open-label CALBG 40502/NCCTG N063H trial of 799 chemotherapy-naive patients with...

breast cancer

Anthracycline Use Steadily Declining in Early Breast Cancer Population

Anthracycline use in early-stage breast cancer has been steadily declining, especially for patients with stage I/II or HER2-positive disease, according to an analysis of patients treated at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) School of Medicine.1 Treatment Alternatives Lead author...

Breast Cancer Symposium Features Surgical Data, Updated Results from BOLERO-2, and Other Important News

The annual Breast Cancer Symposium, held September 13 to 15 in San Francisco, is jointly sponsored by ASCO, the American Society for Radiation Oncology, the American Society of Breast Disease, the American Society of Breast Surgeons, the National Consortium of Breast Cancers, and the Society of...

breast cancer

Will mTOR Inhibitors Change the Treatment of Endocrine-sensitive HER2-negative Breast Cancer?

For the treatment of endocrine-sensitive metastatic breast cancer, the combination of an mTOR inhibitor and an endocrine agent represents a promising new option. At the 2012 Breast Cancer Symposium, the 18-month update of BOLERO-2, which tested therapy with everolimus (Afinitor) plus exemestane,...

breast cancer

Treatment of HER2-positive Disease in 2013 

From the initial discovery of the HER2 family of receptors in the mid-1980s to the present, a “wealth of riches” has been uncovered in terms of agents that can target pathways relevant to this aggressive breast cancer type, notes Hope S. Rugo, MD, Director of Breast Oncology and Clinical Trials...

issues in oncology
supportive care

FDA Clears Multicenter Trial of Treatment for Hair Loss Related to Chemotherapy

The FDA has approved initiation of a multicenter trial of the DigniCap System, a scalp-cooling device for chemotherapy-related hair loss. The trial is the second and final phase of study for the DigniCap System. A pilot study previously conducted by researchers at the University of California San...

breast cancer

Addition of Carboplatin to Standard Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer Supported by SABCS Studies

The achievement of a pathologic complete response in patients with triple-negative breast cancer was boosted by the addition of carboplatin to a standard neoadjuvant chemotherapy regimen, and by the addition of veliparib, an investigational oral PARP inhibitor, plus carboplatin to a standard...

breast cancer

Innovative I-SPY 2 Trial Yields First Results in Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

An innovative approach to streamlining the testing of novel agents in breast cancer has yielded some of its first results, which were reported at the 2013 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.1 Adaptive Trial Design The veliparib/carboplatin plus standard neoadjuvant therapy regimen is currently...

breast cancer

A New Era in the Management of Advanced HER2-Positive Breast Cancer

Approximately 20% of all breast cancers are human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2)-positive. Prior to the era of HER2-targeted therapy, HER2-positive breast cancer was characterized by a poor prognosis.1,2 The development of the first HER2-targeted therapy, trastuzumab (Herceptin), led to...

breast cancer

Fertility Preservation Suggested With Triptorelin in Long-Term Study

Young women with early breast cancer may be more likely to resume menses and become pregnant when treated with a luteinizing hormone–releasing hormone (LH-RH) analog (also known as a gonadotropin-releasing hormone [GnRH] analog) along with chemotherapy, according to the final follow-up of...

breast cancer

BRCA Mutations Found in Many Breast Tumors Called ‘ER-Positive’

BRCA mutations may occur in nearly one-third of breast cancer patients who would have been described as having triple-negative cancer except that their tumors express low levels of estrogen receptor, so the tumors are described as ER–low positive, according to researchers from The University of...

breast cancer

Novel Agents May Address Endocrine Therapy Resistance

Progress has recently been swift in the development of new drugs to improve the response to hormone therapy in breast cancer, according to Hope S. Rugo, MD, Professor of Medicine and Director of Breast Oncology and Clinical Trials Education at the University of California, San Francisco, Helen...

breast cancer

Ovarian Suppression Plus Hormonal Therapy May Be Practice-Changing in Premenopausal Hormone Receptor–Positive Early-Stage Breast Cancer

Results of the large International Breast Cancer Study Group (IBCSG)-coordinated SOFT trial present a convincing argument for the addition of ovarian function suppression to adjuvant hormonal therapy to reduce the risk of tumor recurrence in younger women with hormone receptor–positive early-stage...

breast cancer
issues in oncology

Too Early to Use Genome Sequencing for Breast Cancers in the Clinic

The role of next-generation sequencing (high-throughput technologies that allow DNA and RNA to be analyzed more quickly and inexpensively than earlier techniques) in breast cancer remains unclear and at present is primarily a research tool. Therefore, clinicians should be cautious in using genetic...

2015 ASCO Annual Meeting Planning Committees

The ASCO Annual Meeting highlights the latest research and treatment advances in oncology, with more than 28,000 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 ...

breast cancer

Patients With Incomplete Response to Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy Benefit From Capecitabine

Treatment with capecitabine increased disease-free and overall survival in breast cancer patients with residual disease after neoadjuvant chemotherapy, according to a study reported by researchers from Japan and Korea at the 2015 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.1 “It has been unclear whether...

breast cancer

Andrew Seidman, MD, and Hope Rugo, MD, on Advanced Breast Cancer: KEYNOTE-028 Study Results

Andrew Seidman, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California, San Francisco, discuss preliminary efficacy and safety findings of pembrolizumab in patients with PD-L1–positive, estrogen receptor-positive/HER2-negative disease. (Abstract S5-07)

breast cancer
symptom management

Andrew Seidman, MD, and Hope Rugo, MD, on Reducing Alopecia: FDA Approves New Device

Andrew Seidman, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California, San Francisco, discuss the recent approval of a cooling cap to reduce hair loss during chemotherapy.

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