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NIH Partners With 11 Biopharmaceutical Companies on PACT Collaboration

On October 12, 2017, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and 11 leading biopharmaceutical companies launched the Partnership for Accelerating Cancer Therapies (PACT), a 5-year public-private research collaboration totaling $215 million as part of the Cancer Moonshot. PACT will initially focus...

solid tumors
lung cancer

New Interdisciplinary Lung Cancer Center at NYU Langone Health

The Perlmutter Cancer Center at New York University (NYU) Langone Health, a National Cancer Institute–designated center, has announced the creation of a new interdisciplinary center bringing together new and existing programs to study, diagnose, treat, and prevent the nation’s leading cancer: lung ...

solid tumors
breast cancer
issues in oncology
health-care policy

Health-Care Access Unlikely to Explain Racial/Ethnic Disparities in Breast Cancer Outcomes

Even with equivalent access to care, black patients with breast cancer may fare worse than white patients with breast cancer, according to Lawrence H. Kushi, ScD, Director of Scientific Policy at the Kaiser Permanente Northern California Division of Research in Oakland. “Accounting for...

issues in oncology

Experts Address Cancer Health Disparities in Facebook Live Session at AACR Meeting

Although it has long been known that certain cancer types disproportionately affect individuals from underserved and underrepresented populations, the sources of these disparities are still not entirely clear. In a “Facebook Live” session at the 2017 American Association for Cancer Research (AACR)...

issues in oncology
hematologic malignancies
solid tumors

Reports From JCO and JOP

Staying up-to-date with peer-reviewed oncology literature is a daunting task. To assist readers, The ASCO Post has summarized a number of studies recently published in the Journal of Oncology Practice (JOP) and the Journal of Clinical Oncology (JCO). Survival as Quality Metric in Cancer Care In a...

ASH Honors Josef T. Prchal, MD, and Sherrill J. Slichter, MD, With 2017 Henry M. Stratton Medal

THE AMERICAN SOCIETY of Hematology (ASH) will recognize Josef T. Prchal, MD, of the University of Utah, and Sherrill J. Slichter, MD, of Bloodworks Northwest and the University of Washington, with the 2017 Henry M. Stratton Medal for their seminal contributions in the areas of basic and clinical/ ...

ASH Honors Benjamin L. Ebert, MD, PhD, With the 2017 William Dameshek Prize

THE AMERICAN Society of Hematology (ASH) will present the 2017 William Dameshek Prize to Benjamin L. Ebert, MD, PhD, of Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute for his seminal discoveries in multiple areas of nonmalignant and malignant hematology....

Parker Institute, Dana-Farber Collaboration

The Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy announced that researchers at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute have joined its network. Dana-Farber brings a team of experts who will collaborate with Parker Institute investigators to enhance and expand research projects and clinical trials. Dana-Farber’s...

supportive care
palliative care
cost of care
issues in oncology

Palliative Care Intervention Reduces Total Health-Care Costs in Patients With Advanced Cancer

A matched case-controlled study among Medicare beneficiaries with metastatic lung, colorectal, breast, and prostate cancers has found that palliative care consultation significantly reduced total health-care costs following intervention. According to data presented at the 2017 Palliative and...

integrative oncology

University of Michigan Medical School Launches Integrative Oncology Scholars Program

THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN Medical School in Ann Arbor recently received a $1,167,943 5-year grant from the National Cancer Institute to launch the Integrative Oncology Scholars Program. The goal of the program is to teach oncology health-care providers how to evaluate the scientific evidence of...

supportive care
palliative care

Digital Palliative Care Curriculum Improves Knowledge, Skills, and Opioid Prescribing Behavior

A new electronic curriculum delivered via e-mail with push technology may provide an efficient, cost-effective solution to the shortage of palliative care faculty serving the nation’s oncology fellowship programs. According to data presented at the 2017 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology...

supportive care
palliative care

Early Integrated Palliative Care Improves Patient Coping Strategies, Quality of Life, and Symptoms of Depression

A new study has shed light on how palliative care interventions may improve patient outcomes. According to data presented at the 2017 Palliative and Supportive Care in Oncology Symposium,1 patients with incurable cancer who received early integrated palliative care had an increased use of active...

genomics/genetics

Role of the E7 Gene in High-Risk HPV

NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE (NCI) researchers have found that for the most common high-risk type of human papillomavirus (HPV) to cause cervical cancer, an important viral gene may need to have a precise DNA sequence. The findings, published by Mirabello et al in Cell,1 contribute to a better...

issues in oncology

Fleeing a Revolution, Becoming an Oncologist

Nicaragua, situated between Costa Rica and Honduras, is the poorest country in Central America. Following the U.S. occupation in 1912, the Somoza family began a brutal political dynasty that would end in 1979 during the bloody Nicaraguan Revolution.  Marcela G. del Carmen, MD, MPH, Chief Medical...

supportive care
palliative care

Advancing Care Across the Cancer Continuum

Addressing the need to integrate palliative and supportive care practices into medical specialties to ensure optimal patient-centered care across the cancer continuum and the evidence-based remedies to accomplish that goal were the focus of the nearly 300 study abstracts presented at the 2017...

integrative oncology
symptom management

Cognitive Behavior Therapy for Insomnia: Sleeping Well With Cancer and Beyond

The ASCO Post’s Integrative Oncology series is intended to facilitate the availability of evidence-based information on integrative and complementary therapies commonly used by patients with cancer. In this installment, Sheila N. Garland, PhD, R Psych, and Jun J. Mao, MD, MSCE, present...

ACCC Honors Barbara L. McAneny, MD, FASCO, MACP, With Annual Achievement Award

In recognition of her work in value-based care, Barbara McAneny, MD, FASCO, MACP, was honored with the Annual Achievement Award of the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC). Her work in developing the grant-funded COME HOME oncology medical home initiative demonstrated reduced costs and...

Johns Hopkins Researcher Awarded $300,000 to Investigate Genetics of Lung Cancer

The Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation (ALCF) and the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) announced they have awarded $300,000 in research funding to a Johns Hopkins University investigator studying the genetics of lung cancer. According to the organizations, Johns ...

Huntsman Cancer Institute Names New Clinical Research Director

Huntsman Cancer Institute (HCI) at the University of Utah has announced David Gaffney, MD, PhD, as Senior Director for Clinical Research. In this position, Dr. Gaffney will oversee Huntsman Cancer Institute’s clinical research efforts, which include more than 200 active clinical cancer trials at...

New Head Named to Fred Hutch Cancer Prevention Program

On October 1, 2017, nutritional epidemiologist Marian Neuhouser, PhD, RD, became head of the Cancer Prevention Program in the Public Health Sciences Division at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (Fred Hutch). She replaces Acting Program Head Johanna Lampe, PhD, RD, Associate Director of...

solid tumors
gastrointestinal cancer

Pembrolizumab in Advanced Gastric Cancer

On September 22, 2017, pembrolizumab (Keytruda) was granted accelerated approval for treatment of recurrent locally advanced or metastatic, gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma with tumors expressing programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1), as determined by a U.S. Food and Drug...

Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice in Oncology Announced at JADPRO Live

The inaugural Mary Pazdur Award for Excellence in Advanced Practice in Oncology was announced at the 2017 JADPRO Live, the annual conference of the Advanced Practitioner Society for Hematology and Oncology (APSHO). Mary Pazdur is the late wife of Richard Pazdur, MD, Director of the Oncology Center...

leukemia

Novel Risk-Assessment Model for Acute Myeloid Leukemia

A RECENTLY PUBLISHED STUDY in JAMA Oncology, led by Mohamed Sorror, MD, MSc, and Elihu Estey, MD, of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (Fred Hutch), involving five collaborating institutions, provides a novel model to predict 1-year survival rates of patients after beginning treatment...

issues in oncology
supportive care

Helping Oncologists to Become Better Communicators With Their Patients

Timothy Gilligan, MD, FASCO, Co-Chair of ASCO’s Expert Panel on Patient-Physician Communications Guideline and Vice-Chair for Education and Associate Professor of Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Taussig Cancer Institute, spends half of his professional time treating patients with urologic...

issues in oncology
supportive care

ASCO Releases Guideline to Help Oncologists Improve Communication With Patients—and Their Own Well-Being

In September 2017, ASCO published a new guideline in the Journal of Clinical Oncology that outlines best practices for communicating effectively with patients and their family members.1 The guideline is the result of recommendations from a multidisciplinary panel of experts in a number of fields,...

Moffitt Researcher Awarded Grant to Study New Treatments for Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

MOFFITT CANCER CENTER recently announced that Andriy Marusyk, PhD, was awarded a $450,000 research grant from Susan G. Komen. Dr. Marusyk is receiving 1 of 37 research grants looking into novel treatments for aggressive types of breast cancer. This year, Susan G. Komen is focusing on new...

solid tumors
lung cancer

Addressing Disparities in Use of Lung Cancer Screening With Community Outreach

African Americans and members of other communities of lower socioeconomic status have higher burdens of lung cancer mortality. Therefore, targeting underserved patient populations with lung cancer screening is of the utmost importance, according to Christopher Lathan, MD, MS, MPH, a medical...

Restorative Effects of Painting Offset the Demands of Oncology

Oncologists are apt to give patients the worst news of their lives: You have cancer. Yet studies show that, by and large, despite the stressful aspects of treating people with a life-threatening disease, oncologists report one of the highest percentages of professional satisfaction among medical...

genomics/genetics
solid tumors
lymphoma
multiple myeloma

Update on NCI-MATCH Precision Medicine Trial

THE NATIONAL CANCER INSTITUTE (NCI) Molecular Analysis for Therapy Choice (MATCH) clinical trial has achieved the goal of screening nearly 6,000 patients in just under 2 years, according to data presented at the 2017 American Association for Cancer Research–NCI–European Organisation for Research...

geriatric oncology

Clinical Trials Actively Recruiting Geriatric Oncology Patients

THE INFORMATION contained in this Clinical Trials Resource Guide includes actively recruiting clinical studies focused on geriatric oncology. These studies highlight psychological interventions, managing cancer symptoms, the surgical process, fall prevention, and making treatment decisions; as well ...

Susan G. Komen Launches Crowdfunding Initiative to Support Metastatic Breast Cancer Research

Individuals and organizations looking to contribute to advancements in metastatic breast cancer research can now do so by participating in Susan G. Komen’s inaugural crowdfunding initiative. Through this initiative, donors have the opportunity to contribute directly to the pioneering work of four...

Angela M. Stover, PhD, Presented With Inaugural Michael S. O’Malley Alumni Award

ANGELA M. STOVER, PhD, Assistant Professor in Health Policy and Management at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Gillings School of Global Public Health, has won the 2017 Michael S. O’Malley Alumni Award for Publication in Excellence in Cancer Population Sciences. She was selected for her...

Arif Kamal, MD, MBA, MHS, Named Visionary in Hospice and Palliative Medicine

ARIF KAMAL, MD, MBA, MHS, Associate Professor of Medicine and Business Administration and Physician Director of Quality at the Duke Cancer Institute, was recently named by the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine as 1 of the 30 most influential leaders in hospice and palliative...

lymphoma

FDA Approves CAR T-Cell Therapy for Adults With Certain Types of Large B-Cell Lymphoma

ON OCTOBER 18, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved axicabtagene ciloleucel (Yescarta), a cell-based gene therapy, to treat adult patients with certain types of large B-cell lymphoma who have not responded to or who have relapsed after at least two other kinds of treatment....

solid tumors
breast cancer

Gene-Expression Assays in Early-Stage Breast Cancer: Who Should Order Them and When?

A deeper understanding of biology has allowed significant advances in the treatment of breast cancer. In the early-stage setting, standard pathology measures can help identify which subset of patients with hormone receptor–positive breast cancers are more likely to experience benefit from...

ASCO Election Candidates

SIXTEEN DISTINGUISHED ASCO members have been selected by the ASCO Nominating Committee as candidates for open leadership positions within the Society, including:  The offices of President-Elect and Treasurer  Four seats on the Society’s Board of Directors  Two seats on the Nominating Committee...

Encourage Your Lawmakers to Increase Funding for NIH in FY 2018

EARLIER THIS FALL, Congress voted to pass a 3-month Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the government, while the House of Representatives and the Senate work to finalize a Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 funding bill. The CR, viewed as a temporary measure to keep the federal government operating, keeps...

President-Elect Candidates Discuss ASCO’s Role in Shaping Global Oncology Community

Howard A. “Skip” Burris III, MD, FACP, FASCO, of Sarah Cannon and Tennessee Oncology, and Therese Marie Mulvey, MD, FASCO, of Massachusetts General Hospital North Shore Cancer Center, were selected by the ASCO Nominating Committee as candidates for ASCO President-Elect. Below, the candidates share...

Recommendations From ASCO Summit Promote Multidisciplinary Collaboration to Focus on Obesity Prevention and Treatment

RECOMMENDATIONS FROM an ASCO “Summit on Addressing Obesity Through Multidisciplinary Collaboration” have been published in a new article in the journal Obesity. The recommendations cover four key areas in response to the current issues providers face in addressing obesity prevention and treatment...

solid tumors
breast cancer

Genomic Profiling With Multidisciplinary Collaboration: Improving Breast Cancer Outcomes Through Timely Chemotherapy Initiation

As reviewed in this issue of The ASCO Post, Losk and colleagues from Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center report their institution’s implementation of a protocol of surgeon-initiated genomic profiling of estrogen receptor–positive tumors in women with early breast cancer that resulted in ...

Cast Your Vote in ASCO Election by December 4

The ASCO Nominating Committee, which is itself elected by ASCO members, is charged with selecting candidates for future Society leadership. This job is both a great pleasure and a real challenge, since ASCO has so many dedicated members who have the desire, insight, and ability to lead our...

solid tumors
breast cancer

Surgeon-Initiated Gene-Expression Profile Testing in Early-Stage Breast Cancer Reduces Time to Start of Chemotherapy

In a single-center study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Katya Losk, MPH, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and colleagues found that an intervention including surgeon initiation of gene-expression profile testing with Oncotype DX significantly reduced the time to testing, receipt of...

issues in oncology
cost of care

Tackling the High Cost of Cancer Care

AT THE 2017 ASCO ANNUAL MEETING, the leaders of the newly formed Value in Cancer Care Consortium (vi3c; vi3c.org) met to discuss the group’s plan to study how to improve the affordability of cancer drugs and make them more accessible to patients. The goal of the Value in Cancer Care Consortium is...

issues in oncology

Informed Consent and the Oncologist: Legal Duties to Discuss Costs of Treatment

For 50 years, clinicians in the United States have had a legal duty to disclose to patients with cancer the risks, benefits, and alternatives to a proposed cancer treatment. Until recently, however, it has been unclear whether clinicians have a similar duty to discuss the costs of that treatment....

Stephanie Lee, MD, MPH, Elected ASH Vice President; Two Councillors Appointed to 4-Year Terms

THE AMERICAN SOCIETY OF HEMATOLOGY (ASH) has elected Stephanie Lee, MD, MPH, a member of the Clinical Research Division at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center (Fred Hutch), as its Vice President. Dr. Lee will begin her 1-year term after the 2017 ASH Annual Meeting & Exposition in December...

leukemia

Constructing a Risk Stratification Model for Pediatric Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia

In a study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, O’Connor et al combined genetic subtypes and minimal residual disease as a continuous variable to construct a risk stratification model for pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Study Details The study involved a...

breast cancer

Long-Term Risk of Breast Cancer Recurrence After 5 Years of Endocrine Therapy

In a meta-analysis reported in The New England Journal of Medicine by Pan et al for the Early Breast Cancer Trialists’ Collaborative Group (EBCTCG), it was found that breast cancer recurs at a steady incidence following cessation of adjuvant endocrine therapy after 5 years, with the risk...

kidney cancer

ACKC Secures $10 Million for Kidney Cancer Research

Action to Cure Kidney Cancer (ACKC) was instrumental in securing a $10 million line item for the Kidney Cancer Research Program as part of the Department of Defense’s Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP). This represents the largest increase ever in the...

leukemia

Seattle Children’s Opens Trial for Children and Young Adults With Leukemia That Targets CD22 and CD19 Proteins Simultaneously

Seattle Children’s has opened the first chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell immunotherapy trial in the U.S. for children and young adults with relapsed or refractory CD19- and CD22-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) that will simultaneously attack two targets on cancer cells. With ...

The Man in the Vest

It had been an uneventful Sunday morning, and I was writing my final note for the day, hopeful to make a stealth exit and perhaps join my family at church. But as I closed the chart and looked up, I saw Ruthie, my oncology fellow, approaching with a grim expression. “I just left the room of a...

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