2012 ASCO Annual Meeting

Oncology Professionals and Leaders to be Honored at ASCO Annual Meeting

Each year through its Special Awards Program, ASCO recognizes researchers, patient advocates, and leaders of the global oncology community who, through their work, have made significant contributions ...

Issues in Oncology

2012 Annual Meeting to Highlight NCI’s ‘Provocative Questions’ and Offer First-ever Pre–Annual Meeting Seminars

As this year’s ASCO Annual Meeting was being planned, the NCI was developing and releasing its “Provocative Questions” project—an effort to stimulate the cancer community to ask itself 24 key question...

Breast Cancer
Issues in Oncology
Supportive Care
Palliative Care

Studies Report Findings in Patient-centered Care

New studies highlighting findings that will lead to improvements in the patient experience and identifying potential risks for development of cancers in the future were reported at a press briefing he...

Survivorship

Better Information Needed for Primary Care Providers Who Treat Cancer Survivors

Many primary care providers are unaware of the late effects of chemotherapy, according to survey results presented at the ASCO Annual Meeting.1 For three out of four commonly used chemotherapy agents,...

Skin Cancer

Dual BRAF and MEK Inhibition Is Active in Advanced Melanoma

In advanced melanoma, combination therapy with two investigational drugs—one targeting BRAF and the other the MEK pathway—achieved a median progression-free survival of 7.4 months, which rose to 10.8 ...

Supportive Care
Palliative Care
Symptom Management

Antipsychotic Effectively Controls Chemotherapy-induced Breakthrough Nausea and Vomiting

Olanzapine (Zyprexa), an FDA-approved antipsychotic, effectively controlled chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (CINV) in patients who failed to respond to guideline-recommended antiemetic therap...

Lymphoma

Crizotinib Yields Benefits in Aggressive Pediatric Tumors

The value of the targeted agent crizotinib (Xalkori) may not be restricted to the 5% of patients with non–small cell lung cancer who have abnormalities in the ALK gene. In a phase I study conducted by...

Solid Tumors
Prostate Cancer

Encouraging Results with Neoadjuvant Therapy for High-risk Prostate Cancer

Use of the CYP17 inhibitor ­abiraterone acetate (Zytiga) in combination with leuprolide and prednisone prior to radical prostatectomy achieved pathologic complete response or near complete response in...

Breast Cancer

T-DM1 Proves More Effective, Less Toxic Than Standard Treatment for Metastatic Breast Cancer

Positive results continue to be reported for trastuzumab emtansine (T‑DM1), the antibody-drug conjugate linking trastuzumab (Herceptin) to a cytotoxic agent. Early results of the international phase I...

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...

Gynecologic Cancers

Bevacizumab and Olaparib Boost Progression-free Survival in Ovarian Cancer

A trio of randomized, controlled trials of different molecularly targeted therapies showed variable results in ovarian cancer, as reported at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago. The phase III AUR...

CNS Cancers

New Standard of Care for Anaplastic Oligodendroglial Tumors with 1p/19q Codeletions

Adjuvant chemotherapy with PCV (procarbazine [Matulane], lomustine [CeeNU], and vincristine) following standard radiation therapy delayed disease progression and increased survival in patients with a ...

Prostate Cancer

SIDEBAR: SWOG 9346 Conclusions Debated in Special Post-plenary Discussion

Based on the controversial nature of the SWOG 9346 findings, presented at the 2012 Annual Meeting Plenary Session, ASCO intiated a pilot program at the meeting for a “town hall” type of discussion, wh...

Prostate Cancer

Continuous Androgen Deprivation Therapy Continues to Be Standard of Care for Newly Diagnosed Metastatic Prostate Cancer

Based on a prespecified definition of survival comparability, intermittent androgen deprivation proved to be inferior to continuous androgen deprivation for men with newly diagnosed hormone-sensitive ...

Hematologic Malignancies
Lymphoma

German Study Finds Bendamustine Improves Progression-free Survival in Patients with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma

Updated results of the StiL NHL1 study, presented at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting Plenary Session, showed that bendamustine plus rituximab (Rituxan) more than doubled the median progression-free survi...

Solid Tumors

Identification of Novel Mechanism for Suppression of Antitumor Immunity

The efficacy of cancer immunotherapy has been limited, likely reflecting in large part the incomplete understanding of the complex interactions between tumors and the immune microenvironment. A study ...

Thyroid Cancer

Cabozantinib Prolongs Progression-free Survival in Advanced Medullary Thyroid Cancer

Cabozantinib prolonged progression-free survival in patients with unresectable, locally advanced, or metastatic medullary thyroid cancer with documented disease progression in the phase III EXAM trial...

Solid Tumors

p53 Mutation in Advanced Solid Tumors Linked to Aggressive Course

Mutations in the tumor-suppressor protein p53, among the most common mutations in cancers, affect apoptosis, genomic stability, and angiogenesis. To determine the effect of p53 mutation on clinical ch...

Breast Cancer

NK Cell Signature Associated with Favorable Prognosis in Breast Cancer

Tumor cell recognition by natural killer (NK) cells is mediated by the interaction of activating and inhibitory NK cell receptors with ligands expressed on the tumor cells. NK cells also express adhes...

Solid Tumors
Colorectal Cancer

Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms Predict Severe Toxicity of Adjuvant Therapy in Colorectal Cancer

Oxaliplatin/fluoropyrimidine–based adjuvant therapy is of benefit in patients with resected stage II/III colon cancer, but the ability to predict risk of toxicity could improve care by permitting indi...

Solid Tumors

Two Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms Associated with Risk for Paclitaxel-related Peripheral Neuropathy

Peripheral neuropathy is the most common severe toxicity in patients receiving paclitaxel, and mutations in genes affecting drug metabolism, distribution, and elimination are likely to modulate risk f...

Solid Tumors

Alterations in PTEN Insufficient to Predict Sensitivity to Drugs Targeting PI3K/mTOR Pathway

PTEN acts as a tumor-suppressor gene through the action of its phosphatase protein product, which participates in regulation of the cell cycle to prevent too-rapid cell growth and division. Loss of PT...

Issues in Oncology

Gene Profiling–guided Therapy May Improve Survival in Patients with Carcinoma of Unknown Primary

Molecular gene-expression profiling is an emerging technique to determine tissue of origin in patients with carcinoma of unknown primary, although the value of predictions from such profiling in impro...

Leukemia

Updated Findings Further Define Role of Tyrosine Kinase Inhibitors in CML

With three available tyrosine kinase inhibitors for the treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), attention has turned from the ability to achieve a sustained response to the possibility of “curing...

Leukemia

PACE Trial Update: Ponatinib Produces High Response Rates in CML

The third-generation tyrosine kinase inhibitor ponatinib showed robust efficacy in the 10-month follow-up of the phase II PACE trial (Ponatinib Ph+ALL and CML Evaluation), which is evaluating ponatini...

Gastrointestinal Cancer

SIDEBAR: Other Colorectal Cancer News from ASCO

Additional noteworthy gastrointestinal cancer studies presented during oral abstract sessions at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting included the following trials in metastatic colorectal cancer. Perifosine/...

Colorectal Cancer

Bevacizumab beyond Progression Prolongs Survival in Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

In a study highlighted at a press briefing during the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting, German investigators reported that prolonging treatment with bevacizumab (Avastin) beyond disease progression extends ov...

Breast Cancer
Lymphoma
Survivorship

ASCO Studies Point to Risks Associated with Treating Childhood Cancers

Risks associated with being a young cancer survivor were emphasized by two studies highlighted in press briefings at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting. Investigators from the Children’s Oncology Group (COG...

Lung Cancer

First-line Afatinib Superior to Standard Chemotherapy in Advanced EGFR-mutated Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer

First-line therapy with the investigational oral agent afatinib improved progression-free survival compared with standard chemotherapy (pemetrexed (Alimta)/cisplatin) in patients with advanced non–sma...

Skin Cancer

Landscape for Treatment of Metastatic Melanoma Is Expanding

Metastatic melanoma was long considered untreatable and incurable. The FDA approval of ipilimumab (Yervoy) and vemurafenib (Zelboraf) ushered in a new era for this disease, and now additional treatmen...

Health-Care Policy

The Affordable Care Act Stands: Now What?

On March 23, 2010, President Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law—a hotly contested bill that enacted sweeping changes to the U.S. health-care system. The debate over t...

Lung Cancer

Second-line Treatments Tested in Patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

Results of two late-breaking phase III trials presented at 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting add to the evolving understanding of how best to treat non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). The TAILOR trial suggeste...

A Physician, Who Is Also a Cancer Patient, Talks about Medical Errors

In a whispered but resolute voice, Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc, led off his presentation at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting1  by telling the audience his voice is weak because he doesn’t have vocal cords. He s...

Breast Cancer

Older Chemotherapy Studies in Breast Cancer Coming of Age

Results of several long-running chemotherapy trials were reported at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting breast cancer oral session, reported in brief here. NSABP B-38 The final analysis of the National Surg...

Issues in Oncology

Taking Family History and Referral to Genetic Counseling Could Be Improved, Survey Finds

Obtaining a thorough family history of cancer should be a key component in evaluating patients and deciding whether to refer those at increased risk of either primary or second cancers for genetic cou...

Supportive Care

Antidepressant Drug Has ‘Clinically Meaningful’ Effect on Chemotherapy-induced Painful Neuropathy

The oral antidepressant duloxetine (Cymbalta) at 60 mg/d improved chemotherapy-induced painful neuropathy in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase III trial.1 Overall, 59% of patients ...

Lung Cancer

FDG-PET Falls Short for Diagnosis of Non–Small Cell Lung Cancer

The ability to make a diagnosis of non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with FDG-PET varies widely among centers, and this imaging modality performed more poorly in community and academic centers than i...

Solid Tumors
Kidney Cancer

Patient Preference Studied in Treatment Selection for Renal Cell Carcinoma

More attention is being paid to the importance of patient preference as a factor in treatment selection. An innovative randomized, double-blind study in patients with metastatic kidney cancer demonstr...

Breast Cancer

Improving Outcomes and Prediction in Ductal Carcinoma in Situ

Risk stratification and outcomes can be improved for women with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS), according to two studies presented at the 2012 ASCO Annual Meeting. RTOG 9804 Findings from the Radiati...

Breast Cancer

Lapatinib Shows Value Similar to Trastuzumab in Neoadjuvant Regimens for Breast Cancer, but with Greater Toxicity

Lapatinib (Tykerb) proved valuable as a component of neoadjuvant chemotherapy for HER2-positive operable breast cancer in the National Surgical Adjuvant Breast and Bowel Project (NSABP) B-41 trial pre...

Solid Tumors

Striking Activity Shown for Regorafenib in Advanced GIST

Regorafenib, an orally administered investigational tyrosine kinase inhibitor that has shown activity in chemorefractory metastatic colorectal cancer, markedly delayed disease progression in patients ...

Thyroid Cancer

Molecularly Targeted Treatment of Thyroid Cancer Rapidly Evolving

Recent advances in understanding the pathogenesis and altered signaling pathways in thyroid cancer are improving treatment options for this malignancy, especially for the subset of patients with medul...

Leukemia

Novel Agents Should Have Impact in Lymphocytic Leukemias

Agents with novel mechanisms of action may strongly impact outcomes in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL), if data from early-phase studies presented at this year’...

Hematologic Malignancies
Multiple Myeloma

Is There a Role for Metronomic Chemotherapy in Patients with Highly Refractory Multiple Myeloma?

Metronomic chemotherapy using a multidrug regimen appears beneficial and fairly well tolerated in patients with multiple myeloma that is highly refractory to previous treatments, investigators from th...

Prostate Cancer

Continuous Androgen Deprivation Remains Standard of Care in Newly Diagnosed Metastatic Prostate Cancer

Continuous androgen deprivation therapy remains the standard of care for newly diagnosed hormone-sensitive metastatic prostate cancer, according to the phase III Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) 9346 i...

Pivotal Trials in Head and Neck Cancers Yield Mixed Results

The latest research in head and neck cancer reported at this year’s ASCO Annual Meeting presents a mixed picture, according to George R. Blumenschein, Jr, MD, Associate Professor at The Unviersity of ...

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