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prostate cancer
health-care policy

Price Transparency and Variation for Prostate Cancer Radiation Therapy

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Trevor Royce, MS, MD, MPH, and colleagues found that publicly available information on pricing for radiation treatment for prostate cancer was complex and inconsistent, and that pricing varied widely among National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer...

colorectal cancer
issues in oncology

2020 GI Cancers Symposium: Young Adults With Colorectal Cancer Living in Areas of Low Income, Education Likely to Have Worse Survival Outcomes

A retrospective analysis of 26,768 young adults with colorectal cancer aged 40 and under found that those who live in areas with lower income (a median income of less than $38,000) and less education (under 79% high school graduation rate), as well as those who live in urban areas, had worse...

hepatobiliary cancer
colorectal cancer

2020 GI Cancers Symposium: Patient-Reported Outcomes From IMbrave150, BEACON CRC

Patient-reported outcomes from two large studies show that quality of life is maintained longer with newer drug combinations compared with standard-of-care treatments in patients with unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma and BRAF V600E­–mutant metastatic colorectal cancer. The results, from...

gastrointestinal cancer

2020 GI Cancers Symposium: Detecting GI Tumors Using a Cell-Free DNA Test

A blood-based screening test using cell-free DNA to identify methylation signals of hard-to-detect gastrointestinal (GI) cancers could potentially help detect disease at earlier stages. This research will be presented by Brian M. Wolpin, MD, MPH, and colleagues at the 2020 Gastrointestinal Cancers...

Expert Point of View: Hope S. Rugo, MD, FASCO, and Laura J. Esserman, MD, MBA, FASCO

Hope S. Rugo, MD, FASCO, Professor of Medicine, Director of Breast Oncology and Clinical Trials at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF), Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center, said the residual cancer burden index is being increasingly used in medical oncology. “The...

breast cancer

Residual Cancer Burden Is Prognostic of Outcomes Across Breast Cancer Subtypes

Residual cancer burden after neoadjuvant chemotherapy can accurately predict disease recurrence and survival across all breast cancer subtypes, according to the findings from a meta-analysis presented at the 2019 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium by W. Fraser Symmans, MD, Professor and Director...

Expert Point of View: Debra Patt, MD, MPH, MBA

Debra Patt, MD, MPH, MBA, Executive Vice President of Policy and Strategy for Texas Oncology and Clinical Professor at Dell Medical School at the University of Texas at Austin, commented that the 10-year results of NSABP B-42 show “a substantial improvement” in disease-free survival, with an...

breast cancer

Extended Letrozole Boosts Disease-Free Survival in 10-Year Update of NSABP B-42 Trial

“In the 10-year analysis of the NSABP B-42 trial, the effect of extended treatment with 5 years of letrozole on disease-free survival persisted and reached statistical significance. There was no significant improvement in overall survival with letrozole, but letrozole continued to provide a...

Expert Point of View: Michael Jain, MD, PhD

Michael Jain, MD, PhD, of the Moffitt Cancer Center, Tampa, Florida, commented on both studies with the combination of brentuximab vedotin/nivolumab. “For older patients, ABVD [doxorubicin, bleomycin, vinblastine, dacarbazine] is not easy to tolerate, and it would be good to find an easier...

immunotherapy
lymphoma

Brentuximab Vedotin Plus Nivolumab in Hodgkin Lymphoma

The combination of brentuximab vedotin and nivolumab is making headway as first-line therapy for older adults with Hodgkin lymphoma and as salvage therapy for adults with relapsed or refractory classic Hodgkin lymphoma, according to separate studies presented at the 2019 Annual Meeting &...

breast cancer
survivorship

Does Proton Pump Inhibitor Use Affect Cognition in Breast Cancer Survivors?

Proton pump inhibitors, which are sometimes recommended to ease stomach problems during cancer treatment, may have an unintended side effect: impairment of breast cancer survivors' memory and concentration. These findings were published by Madison et al in the Journal of Cancer Survivorship....

skin cancer

Using T-Cell Fraction to Predict Melanoma Recurrence

In a paper published by Pruessmann et al in Nature Cancer, investigators presented a new, quantitative technique that leverages DNA sequencing to make more sophisticated and accurate predictions about which primary melanomas are likely to recur and spread. "As recently as 10 years ago, the outlook...

skin cancer
immunotherapy

Immune-Related Adverse Events and Recurrence-Free Survival With Adjuvant Immunotherapy vs Placebo in Stage III Melanoma

In an analysis of the EORTC 1325/KEYNOTE-054 trial of adjuvant pembrolizumab vs placebo in stage III melanoma reported in JAMA Oncology, Alexander M.M. Eggermont, MD, PhD, and colleagues found that patients treated with pembrolizumab who experienced immune-related adverse events had improved...

lung cancer

Impact of the NCI Cell-Line Database: A Testament to Patient Altruism

In an homage to the gracious patients who provided biospecimens and to the dedicated researchers who have tended and studied the derived cell lines, James L. Mulshine, MD, of the Center for Healthy Aging, Department of Internal Medicine, Rush University, and colleagues have described the impact of...

breast cancer

Mixed Results With Weekly Nab-paclitaxel, Denosumab in Primary Breast Cancer

A weekly schedule of nab-paclitaxel as part of neoadjuvant chemotherapy significantly improved pathologic complete response compared with nab-paclitaxel given 2 weeks out of every 3 weeks (2/3) in patients with primary breast cancer, with a greater magnitude of benefit in patients with...

issues in oncology
prostate cancer
thyroid cancer
leukemia

Cancer Incidence in World Trade Center Responders to the September 11 Attacks

A study published by Shapiro et al in JNCI Cancer Spectrum showed that responders to the World Trade Center site after the attacks on September 11, 2001, have statistically significant elevations in cancer incidence for all cancer sites combined, and for prostate and thyroid cancer and leukemia....

immunotherapy
skin cancer
sarcoma
kidney cancer

Three Studies Examine Relationship Between B-Cell Enrichment and Response to Immunotherapy

The likelihood of a patient responding to immune checkpoint blockade may depend on B cells in the tumor, located within specialized immune-cell clusters known as tertiary lymphoid structures, according to three studies all recently published in Nature. The studies showed that enrichment of B cells...

solid tumors

Relapse and Outcomes in Men Receiving Adjuvant Bleomycin/Etoposide/Cisplatin for Clinical Stage I Nonseminoma

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Fischer et al found different patterns of relapse and associated outcomes among men with relapse after treatment with adjuvant bleomycin/etoposide/cisplatin for clinical stage I nonseminoma. The study included data on 51 patients from 18...

lung cancer

Entrectinib in Advanced ROS1 Fusion–Positive NSCLC

As reported in The Lancet Oncology by Alexander Drilon, MD, and colleagues, an integrated analysis of three phase I/II trials has shown high activity of the TRK and ROS1 inhibitor entrectinib in ROS1 fusion-positive non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). This analysis supported the August 2019 U.S....

Luspatercept in Transfusion-Dependent Lower-Risk Myelodysplastic Syndromes

We’ll start off this week by discussing results from the MEDALIST trial of luspatercept in transfusion-dependent lower-risk myelodysplastic syndromes. Then, we’ll move to a study that’s been covered a lot in the news: does the use of powder in the genital area increase a woman’s chance of ovarian...

integrative oncology

Society for Integrative Oncology’s 16th International Conference

The Society for Integrative Oncology (SIO) hosted its 16th International Conference in New York City, October 19-21, 2019, in partnership with Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK). The conference theme, “Advancing the Science and Art of Integrative Oncology,” focused on deepening the...

gynecologic cancers
prostate cancer
lung cancer
supportive care
multiple myeloma
colorectal cancer
immunotherapy

FDA Pipeline: Priority Reviews in Ovarian Cancer, Prostate Cancer, and NSCLC

This week, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Priority Review to treatments for ovarian, prostate, and lung cancer; granted Orphan Drug designation to therapies for chemotherapy-induced thrombocytopenia and multiple myeloma; and granted Breakthrough Device designation to platforms...

hepatobiliary cancer

Treatment Resistance and Novel Therapies in FGFR-Mutated Cholangiocarcinoma

A new study has shown how resistance to fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) inhibitor treatment develops in patients with cholangiocarcinoma and suggests that adding another therapy at the time of disease progression might resensitize tumor cells to initial therapy. These findings were...

breast cancer

External-Beam Accelerated Partial-Breast Irradiation vs Whole-Breast Irradiation After Breast-Conserving Surgery in DCIS or Node-Negative Breast Cancer

As reported in The Lancet by Timothy J. Whelan, BM, BCh, and colleagues, the phase III noninferiority RAPID trial has shown that external-beam accelerated partial-breast irradiation is noninferior to whole-breast irradiation in reducing risk of local recurrence after breast-conserving surgery in...

leukemia

Conditioning Intensity for Allogeneic Transplantation in Patients With AML

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Hourigan et al found that reduced-intensity conditioning for allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation was associated with poorer outcomes vs myeloablative conditioning in patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) who had genomic...

survivorship

Comparing Options for Ovarian Tissue Cryopreservation to Preserve Fertility in Pediatric Patients With Cancer

With the pediatric cancer survival rate exceeding 80%, “we can reasonably suspect that most of these children will survive more than 5 years from their diagnosis and then go on to puberty,” when they may have to deal with the consequences of cancer treatment, according to Rebecca Flyckt, MD,...

lung cancer
immunotherapy

Maintenance Bevacizumab With or Without Pemetrexed in Advanced Nonsquamous NSCLC

In a Japanese phase III trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Seto et al found that the addition of maintenance pemetrexed to bevacizumab did not significantly improve overall survival in patients with previously untreated, advanced nonsquamous non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC)...

pancreatic cancer
genomics/genetics

Genomic Aberrations and Pancreatic Cancer Subtypes

Researchers have discovered detailed new genetic information about the subtypes of pancreatic cancer. A better understanding of the disease groups may lead to new treatment options and improved clinical outcomes for this lethal disease, Chan-Seng-Yue et al reported in Nature Genetics. The study...

breast cancer

Are Women in Europe or Asia More Likely to Have Breast-Conserving Therapy Than Those in the United States?

Neoadjuvant systemic therapy can shrink tumors in patients with breast cancer and, in some cases, allow patients to receive breast-conserving therapy who would otherwise require mastectomy. However, in the United States, about 55% of patients who become eligible for breast-conserving therapy after...

leukemia
immunotherapy

Expert Point of View: Howard J. Weinstein, MD

Commenting on the blinatumomab study, Howard J. Weinstein, MD, Chief of Pediatric Hematology-Oncology at Massachusetts General Hospital for Children and Harvard Medical School in Boston, said: “These are very promising results for children, adolescents, and young adults who have had a first...

leukemia

Selected Abstracts on Novel Therapies for Chronic Myeloid Leukemia

To complement The ASCO Post’s comprehensive coverage of the 2019 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting & Exposition, here are several abstracts selected from the meeting proceedings focusing on novel therapeutic regimens for chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). For full details of...

immunotherapy
leukemia

Blinatumomab Outperforms Chemotherapy as Post-Reinduction Consolidation Therapy in Younger Patients With B-Cell ALL

Blinatumomab was superior to standard chemotherapy in children, adolescents, and young adults at the first relapse of B-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) as post-reinduction consolidation therapy prior to hematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT), according to the results of a late-breaking...

issues in oncology
cost of care
survivorship

Cancer Survivors Face Substantial Medical Financial Hardship

Although advances in cancer treatments have led to huge increases in the number of survivors in the United States—more than 16.9 million in 2019—many of those survivors, particularly those aged 18 to 64, face substantial medical financial hardship due to their diagnosis and treatment, necessitating ...

skin cancer
immunotherapy

Different Doses of Adjuvant Ipilimumab vs High-Dose Interferon Alfa-2b in Patients With Resected High-Risk Melanoma

As reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by Tarhini et al, the phase III Intergroup E1609 trial has shown an overall survival advantage with adjuvant ipilimumab at 3 mg/kg—but not at 10 mg/kg—vs high-dose interferon alfa-2b in patients with resected high-risk cutaneous melanoma. The...

prostate cancer

Use of Artificial Intelligence for Diagnosing and Grading Prostate Cancer

Researchers at have developed a method based on artificial intelligence (AI) for the histopathologic diagnosis and grading of prostate cancer. The study, published by Ström et al in The Lancet Oncology, showed that the AI system can be trained to detect and grade prostate cancer from needle biopsy...

breast cancer

Higher 21-Gene Recurrence Score May Be Associated With Increased Risk of Locoregional Recurrence in Patients With Breast Cancer

A new study shows that a test physicians commonly use to guide chemotherapy for patients with breast cancer after surgery may also help them decide whether radiation therapy may be of benefit. Results published by Wendy A. Woodward, MD, PhD, and colleagues in JAMA Oncology suggest patients with an...

multiple myeloma

Selected Abstracts on New Therapies for Newly Diagnosed Multiple Myeloma

To complement The ASCO Post’s comprehensive coverage of the 2019 American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting & Exposition, here are several abstracts selected from the meeting proceedings focusing on novel therapeutic regimens including the monoclonal antibody daratumumab in combination ...

head and neck cancer

Patients With HPV-Positive and HPV-Negative Oropharyngeal Cancer May Have Different Rates of Mortality

New research indicates that there is a higher risk of early death among patients with oropharyngeal cancer not associated with human papillomavirus (HPV) vs those whose tumors are HPV-positive. The findings are published by Fullerton et al in Cancer.  The incidence of oropharyngeal cancer is...

breast cancer
issues in oncology

Are Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Breast Cancer Diagnosis Caused by Health Insurance Coverage?

Lack of insurance coverage is a major cause of delayed breast cancer screening and treatment among minority women, which could lead to a decrease in a patient’s chance of survival. Nearly half of the disparity in later-stage diagnosis between non-Hispanic white women and black, Hispanic, and...

prostate cancer

Patient-Reported Functional Outcomes With Hypofractionated vs Conventionally Fractionated Radiotherapy for Nonmetastatic Prostate Cancer

In a national cohort study conducted in the United Kingdom and reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Nossiter et al found no clinically important differences in patient-reported functional outcomes among men receiving hypofractionated vs conventionally fractionated radiotherapy for...

multiple myeloma

Activity of Belantamab Mafodotin in Patients With Heavily Pretreated Relapsed or Refractory Multiple Myeloma

In the phase II DREAMM-2 trial reported in The Lancet Oncology, Sagar Lonial, MD, and colleagues found that the antibody-drug conjugate belantamab mafodotin was active in patients with heavily pretreated relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma. The agent is a conjugate of an anti–B-cell maturation...

myelodysplastic syndromes

Luspatercept in Transfusion-Dependent Lower-Risk Myelodysplastic Syndromes

In the phase III MEDALIST trial reported in The New England Journal of Medicine, Fenaux et al found that luspatercept significantly reduced the severity of anemia vs placebo in red blood cell transfusion–dependent patients with very low- to intermediate-risk myelodysplastic syndromes with ring...

breast cancer

Hope S. Rugo, MD, on Metastatic Triple-Negative Breast Cancer: Retrospective Analysis of PD-L1 Immunohistochemistry Assays

Hope S. Rugo, MD, of the University of California San Francisco Comprehensive Cancer Center, discusses a retrospective analysis on the effectiveness of the VENTANA PD-L1 SP142 assay, the Dako 22C3 assay, and the VENTANA SP263 assay as predictors of response to atezolizumab plus nab-paclitaxel in...

leukemia

ADMIRAL Trial: Gilteritinib Improves Overall Survival in Relapsed or Refractory FLT3-Mutated AML

As reported in The New England Journal of Medicine by Alexander E. Perl, MD, of Abramson Cancer Center, University of Pennsylvania, and colleagues, the phase III ADMIRAL trial showed improved overall survival with the oral FMS-like tyrosine kinase 3 (FLT3) inhibitor gilteritinib vs salvage...

skin cancer

Molecular Characteristics of Leptomeningeal Melanoma Metastases

Patients with advanced melanoma who develop metastases in the leptomeninges usually have a poor prognosis—most patients only survive for 8 to 10 weeks after diagnosis. One reason for this poor prognosis is that very little is known about the molecular development of leptomeningeal melanoma...

colorectal cancer

Association Between Colorectal Cancer and Ulcerative Colitis

Patients with the inflammatory bowel disease ulcerative colitis have a higher risk of dying from colorectal cancer, despite modern therapy, even though the risk has declined in recent years. Olén et al published these findings in The Lancet. Previous research has shown that patients with ulcerative ...

solid tumors
genomics/genetics

Entrectinib in Advanced or Metastatic NTRK Fusion–Positive Solid Tumors

As reported in The Lancet Oncology by George D. Demetri, MD, and colleagues, integrated analysis of three phase I/II trials has shown high levels of activity of the tropomyosin receptor kinase (TRK) inhibitor entrectinib in advanced NTRK fusion–positive solid tumors. This analysis supported the...

leukemia

Activity of Ruxolitinib in Chronic Neutrophilic Leukemia and Atypical Chronic Myeloid Leukemia

In a phase II study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Dao et al found that the JAK1/2 inhibitor ruxolitinib was active in patients with chronic neutrophilic leukemia (CNL), with less activity observed in those with atypical chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and greater activity observed...

gynecologic cancers

Is There an Association Between Powder Use and Risk of Ovarian Cancer?

As reported in JAMA by O’Brien et al, pooled data from four large U.S.-based prospective cohorts suggest the lack of a significant association between the use of powder in the genital area and an increased risk of ovarian cancer. The investigators noted that the analysis may have not been...

Recent Approvals From the FDA

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) certainly had a busy December, and this week, we’ll be reviewing some recent approvals: olaparib for germline BRCA-mutated metastatic pancreatic cancer; fam-trastuzumab deruxtecan-nxki for patients with unresectable or metastatic HER2-positive breast...

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