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Update on Treatments Under Study for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia

The ASCO Post has offered comprehensive coverage of the 2019 ASCO Annual Meeting. To complement this news coverage, here are featured clinical trials of several treatments in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). They focus on the monoclonal antibody obinutuzumab in combination therapy in the CLL14...

Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas Awards $136 Million in New Grants

The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) recently awarded 71 new grants, totaling close to $136 million, to advance cancer research. This total includes 58 academic research grant awards, 10 prevention awards, and 3 product development research awards. CPRIT has now brought 181 ...

prostate cancer

Investigating the Inflammatory Mechanisms That May Be Causing Prostate Cancer in World Trade Center First Responders

The terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001*, on the World Trade Center in New York City resulted in the deaths of more than 2,700 people.1 Nearly 2 decades later, that number may soon be exceeded by the more than 2,000 deaths—and climbing—of first responders to the attack, including firefighters,...

International Collaboration Announces Additional NCCN Harmonized Guidelines for Sub-Saharan Africa

To improve cancer outcomes in Sub-Saharan Africa, a collaborative project from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), the African Cancer Coalition (ACC), the American Cancer Society, and others recently entered a new phase in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Oncologists from 11 African...


How Ultrahigh-Dose Radiation Therapy, Interferon, and CAR T Cells May Boost Immunotherapy Effectiveness

This past June, the University of Pennsylvania established the Mark Foundation Center for Immunotherapy, Immune Signaling, and Radiation to study the role interferon and pattern recognition receptor signaling transduction pathways play in modulating the immune system’s ability to recognize and...

Charles Rudin, MD, PhD, and Andrew Nicholson, MD, Honored for Lifetime Scientific Achievement by IASLC

Both Charles Rudin, MD, PhD, and Andrew Nicholson, MD, were recognized by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) at the IASLC 2019 World Conference on Lung Cancer (WCLC). The 19th WCLC, the world’s largest international gathering of clinicians, researchers and scientists ...

Denise R. Aberle, MD, Honored by IASLC for Contributions to the Prevention of Lung Cancers

Denise R. Aberle, MD, of the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA), was recognized by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) with the Joseph W. Cullen Prevention/Early Detection Award at the IASLC 2019 World Conference on...

bladder cancer
issues in oncology

The Fight Against Breast Cancer Illustrates the Health-Care Challenges of Women in Poverty

"Of all the forms of inequality, injustice in health is the most shocking and the most inhumane….” —Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr Progress has been made in expanding access to health care for low-income populations, but the quality of care still lags behind and can result in less successful outcomes...

Special Events at the 2019 ASCO Annual Meeting

1. (Left to right) Sandra Swain, MD, FASCO, Lynn M. Schuchter, MD, FASCO, and Linda Bosserman, MD, FACP, FASCO, among the speakers and guests at the Women Leaders in Oncology Event, held in conjunction with the ASCO Annual Meeting, June 3, 2019. Photo by © ASCO/Matt Herp 2019. 2. Attendees at the...


Finding a New Focus After Cancer

In the early fall of 2015, my daughter and I were on our way to our favorite nail salon to get picture-perfect ready for a gala later that evening at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York, when I got a call from my gynecologist saying I had “flunked my Pap test.” The Pap smear showed...

lung cancer

Lung Disease Associated With E-Cigarette Use

On September 12, 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the updated number of confirmed and probable cases of lung disease associated with e-cigarette product use, or vaping. The new case count is the first national aggregate based on the new CDC case definition...

Prevent Cancer Foundation Awards $250,000 in Community Grants

Through its community grants program, the Prevent Cancer Foundation is supporting 10 projects that are focused on increasing cancer prevention and early detection in communities across the United States, from Honolulu to Baltimore. The projects were selected through a competitive grants process,...

Personalizing Medicine

The ASCO Post is pleased to reproduce installments of the Art of Oncology as published previously in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. These articles focus on the experience of suffering from cancer or of caring for people diagnosed with cancer, and they include narratives, topical essays,...

breast cancer
colorectal cancer
lung cancer
prostate cancer
issues in oncology

AACR Disparities: Uninsured/Underinsured, Lower-Income, and/or Minority Patients More Likely to Receive Cancer Diagnosis After ED Visit

Medicare patients from lower socioeconomic groups and several ethnic minority groups were more likely to be diagnosed with cancer following an emergency department visit, according to results of a study presented at the 12th American Association for Cancer Research Conference on The Science of...

gynecologic cancers

Origin and Taxonomy of Mucinous Ovarian Cancer

An international study has revealed the origin of mucinous ovarian cancer, confirming that unlike other types of ovarian cancer, this cancer arises from benign and borderline precursors at the ovaries and are not extraovarian metastases. These findings were published by Cheasley et al in Nature...

colorectal cancer

FDA Approves Cologuard for Persons Aged 45 and Older at Average Risk for Colorectal Cancer

Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the noninvasive colorectal cancer screening test Cologuard for eligible average-risk individuals aged 45 years and older, expanding on its previous indication for those aged 50 years and older. Cologuard is a stool DNA-based colorectal...

prostate cancer

Andrew Kneebone, MD, on an ANZUP Trial on Adjuvant vs Early Salvage Radiotherapy After Prostatectomy

Andrew Kneebone, MD, of Royal North Shore Hospital, discusses phase III study findings showing that at 5 years, biochemical control was similar between adjuvant and early salvage radiotherapies, the latter sparing half of the men potential side effects of radiotherapy without any significant...

issues in oncology
palliative care

Robert Olson, MD, on Quality-of-Life Outcomes After Stereotactic Ablative Radiotherapy vs Standard-of-Care Palliative Treatments

Robert Olson, MD, of the BC Cancer Centre for the North, discusses a secondary analysis of the SABR-COMET trial, which showed there was a small magnitude decline in quality of life in both arms of the study but no associated detriment with stereotactic ablative radiotherapy (Abstract 148).

cns cancers

Erica H. Bell, PhD, on Low-Grade Gliomas: Subgroup Analysis of the NRG Oncology/RTOG 9802 Trial

Erica H. Bell, PhD, of The Ohio State University, discusses phase III findings from a prognostic and predictive molecular subgroup analysis of radiotherapy vs radiotherapy plus procarbazine/lomustine/vincristine in high-risk low-grade gliomas (Abstract 161).


Michael J. LaRiviere, MD, on Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma: Induction Radiation Before CAR T-Cell Therapy for Resistant Disease

Michael J. LaRiviere, MD, of the University of Pennsylvania, discusses the safety and efficacy of an alternate radiation-based approach to using cytotoxic chemotherapy alone in preparation for CAR T-cell treatment (Abstract 135).

head and neck cancer

Sue Sun Yom, MD, PhD, on Oropharyngeal Cancer: Deintensifying Radiation Therapy Plus Chemotherapy

Sue Sun Yom, MD, PhD, of the University of California, San Francisco, discusses phase II results showing that swallowing-related quality of life after deintensified chemoradiation therapy may improve in patients with p16-positive, nonsmoking-associated, locoregionally advanced disease (Abstract...

solid tumors
colorectal cancer

Alejandra Méndez Romero, MD, PhD, on Liver Metastases: Dutch-Belgian Registry of Stereotactic Body Radiation

Alejandra Méndez Romero, MD, PhD, of Erasmus University Medical Center, discusses findings that show high local control rates with stereotactic body radiation for patients in this large published series, most of whom had colorectal cancer (Abstract 230).

head and neck cancer

David Routman, MD, on Oropharyngeal Squamous Cell Carcinoma and HPV Circulating Tumor DNA

David Routman, MD, of the Mayo Clinic, discusses his study findings showing that detectable human papillomavirus circulating tumor DNA in the postoperative setting may be linked to disease progression, which may help improve patient selection for treatment intensity (Abstract LBA5).

issues in oncology
solid tumors

Daniel M. Trifiletti, MD, on Optimizing Whole-Brain Radiotherapy Dose and Fractionation for Patients With Brain Metastases

Daniel M. Trifiletti, MD, of the Mayo Clinic, discusses study findings showing that, between two different radiation doses (30 Gy/10 fractions vs 37.5 Gy/15 fractions), there was no difference in the time to cognitive failure, tumor control, or overall survival for patients with brain metastases...

breast cancer

Youssef Zeidan, MD, PhD, on HER2-Positive Breast Cancer: HERA Trial on Postmastectomy Radiation Therapy

Youssef Zeidan, MD, PhD, of the American University of Beirut Medical Center, discusses study findings showing that, in patients with one to three positive lymph nodes, postmastectomy radiation treatment decreased the risk of locoregional recurrence, particularly in estrogen receptor–positive...

prostate cancer

Ryan Phillips, MD, PhD, on Oligometastatic Prostate Cancer: ORIOLE Trial on Observation vs Stereotactic Ablative Radiation

Ryan Phillips, MD, PhD, of Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions, discusses phase II findings suggesting that treatment with stereotactic ablative radiation significantly decreased the risk of disease progression at 6 months and increased progression-free survival (Abstract LBA3).

issues in oncology
health-care policy

Justin Barnes, MS, on the Affordable Care Act and Risk of Suicide in Patients With Cancer

Justin Barnes, MS, of the St. Louis University School of Medicine, discusses his findings on the risk of suicide, which is higher in patients with cancer than in other adults but can be reduced by health policy interventions, including components of the Affordable Care Act (Abstract LBA9).

gastroesophageal cancer

Steven H. Lin, MD, PhD, on Esophageal Cancer: Proton Beam vs Intensity-Modulated Radiation Therapy

Steven H. Lin, MD, PhD, of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, discusses phase II findings that showed proton beam therapy improved total toxicity burden score with no difference in progression-free survival when compared with intensity-modulated radiation treatment (Abstract LBA2).

breast cancer
issues in oncology

Two Studies Show Variation in Effectiveness of Mammography Across Populations

Two recent studies showed varying degrees of the effectiveness of mammography in different populations. In a report published in Radiology, Gao et al showed that in men at high risk for breast cancer, screening mammography may be able to increase the rate of detection of early-stage disease....

hepatobiliary cancer

Sorafenib Plus Transarterial Chemoembolization for Advanced Hepatocellular Carcinoma

During the past decade, scientists began to test whether the addition of transarterial chemoembolization (TACE) to treatment with sorafenib could increase survival in patients with advanced hepatocellular carcinoma. Scientists from Taiwan and Japan performed the first large, national-level,...



The ASCO Post’s Integrative Oncology series is intended to facilitate the availability of evidence-based information on integrative and complementary therapies sometimes used by patients with cancer. In this installment, Ting Bao, MD, DABMA, MS, and Jyothirmai Gubili, MS, focus on flaxseed because...

UPMC East Cancer Program Earns National Accreditation

UPMC Hillman Cancer Center at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) East was granted a full 3-year accreditation by the Commission on Cancer of the American College of Surgeons. The accreditation follows an extensive onsite survey and is awarded to institutions that demonstrate a...

AACR Honors Steven R. Patierno, PhD, With Distinguished Lectureship on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) named Steven R. Patierno, PhD, as the recipient of the 2019 AACR Distinguished Lectureship on the Science of Cancer Health Disparities. Dr. Patierno presented his award lecture at the 12th AACR Conference on The Science of Cancer Health...

ESMO 2019 Award Winners Announced

The European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) has revealed the 2019 winners of its annual awards. The four distinguished clinicians and scientists will be presented during the ESMO 2019 Congress in Barcelona: Eric Van Cutsem, MD, PhD; Angelo Di Leo, MD, PhD; Cristiana Sessa, MD; and Charles...

ASTRO Names Class of 2019 Fellows Designation

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) has selected 26 members to receive the ASTRO Fellow (FASTRO) designation. The 2019 class of Fellows were recognized during ASTRO’s 61st Annual Meeting in Chicago. The ASTRO Fellows program recognizes individuals who have made significant...

prostate cancer

Two Fred Hutch Scientists Receive Fellowships for Prostate Cancer Research

Two early-career scientists at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center—Alexandra Corella and Sander Frank, PhD—have received grants to further their prostate cancer research. Ms. Corella, a graduate research assistant, won a $25,000, 1-year fellowship from the Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs,...

prostate cancer

Daniel E. Spratt, MD, on the Impact of Antiandrogen Treatment in Prostate Cancer: NRG Oncology/RTOG 9601 Trial

Daniel E. Spratt, MD, of the University of Michigan, discusses phase III study findings showing that 2 years of antiandrogen therapy increased cardiac and neurologic toxicities, as well as mortality from causes other than prostate cancer, in men with low levels of prostate-specific antigen after...

lung cancer

Andreas Rimner, MD, on the PACIFIC Trial: Durvalumab for Stage III NSCLC

Andreas Rimner, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, discusses study findings showing that, for patients with stage III non–small cell lung cancer, durvalumab reduced the rate of and time to disease progression vs placebo and also reduced the number of new distant lesions (Abstract LBA6).

The Lasker Foundation Names Recipients of the 2019 Awards for Medical Research and Public Service

Earlier this month, The Lasker Foundation announced the recipients of its 2019 Lasker Awards for clinical and basic research and public service. Lasker~DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award H. Michael Shepard, PhD,formerly of Genentech, Dennis J. Slamon, MD, PhD, of the University of California,...


Patient-Centered Initiatives at the FDA

OCE Insights is a periodic column developed for The ASCO Post by members of the Oncology Center of Excellence (OCE) at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In this first installment, Vishal Bhatnagar, MD, Acting Associate Director of Patient Outcomes; Bellinda King-Kallimanis, PhD, Senior...

breast cancer
global cancer care

Canadian Cancer Organizations Team Up to Focus on New Approach to Metastatic Breast Cancer

At a press conference at McGill University, Stand Up To Cancer Canada (SU2C Canada), the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS), and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) announced the launch of the SU2C Canada Metastatic Breast Cancer Dream Team to pursue the development of a new drug...


Current Controversies in Lymphoma: From the Role of Liquid Biopsy to Ways to Improve Upon Standard Chemotherapy

Two topics that hematologists are currently grappling with were addressed at the 2019 Debates and Didactics Conference in Sea Island, Georgia, sponsored by Emory University Winship Cancer Institute, by Editor-in-Chief of The ASCO Post, James O. Armitage, MD, FASCO.1 They focus on the emerging role ...

issues in oncology
health-care policy

AACR Cancer Progress Report 2019 Released

Today, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) released the AACR Cancer Progress Report 2019, which highlights how research largely supported by federal investments in the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is spurring improvements in public health and innovations across the spectrum...

prostate cancer

FDA Approves Apalutamide for Metastatic Castration-Sensitive Prostate Cancer

On September 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved apalutamide (Erleada) for patients with metastatic castration-sensitive prostate cancer. Apalutamide was initially approved by the FDA in 2018 for patients with nonmetastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. TITAN Trial...

lung cancer

ASTRO 2019: Patterns of Disease Progression in Patients With Unresectable Stage III NSCLC: Analysis of the PACIFIC Trial

Andreas Rimner, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, presented an update of the landmark PACIFIC trial at the 61st Annual Meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) (Abstract LBA-6). In earlier reports from the randomized phase III trial, Antonia et al had evaluated...

gynecologic cancers

FDA Grants Approval to Lenvatinib/Pembrolizumab in Advanced Endometrial Cancer, Announces Project Orbis

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has announced Project Orbis, an initiative of the FDA Oncology Center of Excellence (OCE). Project Orbis provides a framework for concurrent submission and review of oncology drugs among its international partners. Under this project, the FDA, the...


Targeting an Important Tumor Vulnerability With Maintenance Olaparib in Germline BRCA-Mutated Pancreatic Cancer

In the POLO trial, which is discussed in this issue of The ASCO Post, Golan and colleagues evaluated the potential benefit of maintenance olaparib after disease stability or response to a minimum of 4 months of platinum-based chemotherapy in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer and a...

breast cancer
issues in oncology

FDA Issues Drug Safety Communication on Lung Inflammation Due to Treatment With CDK4/6 Inhibitors

On September 13, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a drug safety communication warning that palbociclib, ribociclib, and abemaciclib—used to treat some patients with advanced breast cancer—may cause rare but severe inflammation of the lungs. The agency approved new warnings about...

lung cancer
multiple myeloma

FDA Pipeline: Breakthrough Therapy Designation in Lung Cancer, Orphan Drug Designations in Myeloma and Soft-Tissue Sarcoma

Recently, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) granted Breakthrough Therapy designation to tepotinib for metastatic non–small cell lung cancer harboring MET exon 14 skipping alterations, and Orphan Drug designations to novel chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapies in both multiple myeloma ...

lung cancer

WCLC 2019: Video-Assisted Thoracic Surgery vs Open Surgery in Lung Cancer

Video-assisted thoracic surgery was associated with lower in-hospital complications and a shorter length of stay compared with open surgery among British patients who were diagnosed with early-stage lung cancer, according to research presented by Lim et al at the International Association for the...