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colorectal cancer
immunotherapy

2019 GI Cancers Symposium: Durvalumab, Tremelimumab, and Best Supportive Care vs Best Supportive Care Alone in Advanced, Refractory Colorectal Cancer

The phase II CCTG CO.26 trial evaluated whether the combination of durvalumab, a programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) inhibitor, and tremelimumab, an anti–cytotoxic T-lymphocyte–associated protein 4 (CTLA-4) antibody, plus best supportive care improved survival vs best supportive care ...

head and neck cancer
gastrointestinal cancer
immunotherapy

2019 GI Cancers Symposium: Pembrolizumab in Second-Line Therapy for Advanced Esophageal Cancer

Pembrolizumab significantly improved overall survival in the second-line setting of advanced esophageal cancer in patients whose tumors tested positive for programmed cell death ligand 1 (PD-L1) with a combined positive score (CPS) of 10 or greater. This was compared to investigator’s choice...

2019 GI Cancers Symposium: Neoadjuvant Chemotherapy vs Upfront Surgery in Resectable Pancreatic Cancer

A phase II/III trial presented by Unno et al at the 2019 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium (Abstract 189) sought to compare neoadjuvant chemotherapy (using gemcitabine and the oral fluoropyrimidine combination of tegafur/gimeracil/oteracil [S-1]) to upfront surgery in patients with histologic ...

hepatobiliary cancer
immunotherapy

2019 GI Cancers Symposium: Nivolumab vs Nivolumab Plus Ipilimumab in Resectable Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Anti–programmed cell death protein 1 and anti–cytotoxic T-lymphocyte–associated protein 4 antibodies have shown activity in hepatocellular carcinoma. Based on these earlier findings, researchers sought to examine the safety, efficacy, and tolerability of perioperative treatment...

Breast Cancer Surveillance Consortium Analysis of Trends in Breast Density Assessment

In a study reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Sprague et al found that only small changes in the proportions of women found to have dense breasts on digital mammography have occurred with revisions in Breast Imaging Reporting and Data System (BI-RADS) density classification...

Analysis of Proportion of Cancer Cases Attributable to Excess Body Weight Across U.S. States

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Islami et al assessed the population attributable fraction (PAF)—the proportion of a given outcome attributable to a given risk factor—of incident cancer cases associated with excess body weight among individual U.S. states during 2011 to 2015. The...

2019 GI Cancers Symposium: Safety, Efficacy of Trifluridine/Tipiracil in Metastatic Gastric Cancer With or Without Gastrectomy

In a poster session earlier today David Ilson, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and colleagues reported on a preplanned subgroup analysis of the double-blind phase III TAGS study looking at the safety and efficacy of the oral agent trifluridine/tipiracil (FTP/TPI) in heavily...

gastroesophageal cancer
gastrointestinal cancer

2019 GI Cancers Symposium: Addition of Andecaliximab to mFOLFOX6 in Treatment-Naive Advanced Gastric or GEJ Adenocarcinoma

A phase I/Ib study found that the addition of andecaliximab, a monoclonal antibody that inhibits matrix metalloproteinase 9, to modified fluorouracil (5-FU), leucovorin, and oxaliplatin (mFOLFOX6) showed activity in gastric and or gastroesophageal junction (GEJ) carcinoma. Based on these...

Study Finds World Trade Center Responders May Be at Increased Risk for Head and Neck Cancers

A study by Graber et al in the International Journal of Cancer has found a significant increase in head and neck cancers among workers and volunteers who responded to the September 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center (WTC), pointing to newly emerging risks that require ongoing monitoring ...

Study Finds High Tumor Mutational Load Is a Predictor of Response to Immunotherapy in Some Cancers

Although the emergence of immune checkpoint inhibitors over the last decade has revolutionized the treatment of patients with metastatic cancers, only a minority of patients experience long-lasting benefit from the therapy. A study investigating the association between tumor mutational burden and...

palliative care
issues in oncology

Impact of Survival Predictions on Aggressive End-of-Life Care Among Patients With Metastatic Cancer

In a single-institution study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Sborov et al found that inaccurate prediction of life expectancy can be associated with greater likelihood of aggressive end-of-life care among patients with metastatic cancer receiving palliative radiation therapy. Study...

solid tumors
prostate cancer

Common Markers of Tumor Hypoxia Found Across Cancer Types

Unlike healthy tissues, tumors thrive in low-oxygen environments, often acquiring the ability to resist treatment and spread to other sites in the body. Despite being a well-known cause of therapy resistance and metastasis, the impact of hypoxia on tumor cells is poorly understood. Researchers have ...

Germline DNA Repair Mutations and Outcomes in Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer

A subset of patients with aggressive prostate cancer are carriers of germline BRCA2 mutations, which are also linked to hereditary breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and pancreatic cancer. Study findings also showed family members of patients with prostate cancer who carry BRCA2 and DNA-repair...

Effectiveness of Advanced Practice Providers in Providing Survivorship Care

In a single-center retrospective analysis reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Thom et al found that advanced practice providers—nurse practitioners and physician assistants—were effective in providing survivorship care to adult patients with cancer in accordance with Institute ...

lymphoma
immunotherapy

Is There a Benefit to Adding Rituximab to Methotrexate-Based Chemotherapy in Primary CNS Lymphoma?

In a phase III trial (HOVON 105/ALLG NHL 24) reported in The Lancet Oncology, Bromberg et al found no significant benefit of the addition of rituximab to high-dose methotrexate-based chemotherapy in patients with newly diagnosed primary central nervous system (CNS) lymphoma. Study Details In the...

pancreatic cancer
immunotherapy

VISTA Checkpoint Implicated in Pancreatic Cancer Immunotherapy Resistance

Researchers have identified a new potential immunotherapy target in pancreatic cancer, which so far has been notoriously resistant to treatment with immune checkpoint blockade drugs effective against a variety of other cancers. A research team from The University of Texas MD Anderson ...

Comorbidities and Cancer Clinical Trial Enrollment

Patients diagnosed with cancer who also have other illnesses or conditions, such as hypertension, asthma, or a prior cancer, are less likely to talk with their health-care provider about a cancer clinical trial, are less likely to be offered to join a clinical trial, and are ultimately less likely...

Hybrid Minimally Invasive Esophagectomy vs Open Esophagectomy in Esophageal Cancer

In a French phase III trial reported in The New England Journal of Medicine, Mariette et al found that a hybrid minimally invasive surgical procedure was associated with reduced postoperative complications vs transthoracic open esophagectomy in patients with resectable cancer of the middle or lower ...

FDA Approves Cabozantinib for Previously Treated Hepatocellular Carcinoma

On January 14, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved cabozantinib (Cabometyx) tablets for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma who have been previously treated with sorafenib. The FDA’s approval of cabozantinib was based on results from the phase III CELESTIAL trial....

lymphoma
immunotherapy

Nivolumab in Relapsed or Refractory DLBCL Ineligible for or After Failure of Autologous Transplantation

In a phase II trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Ansell et al found that nivolumab was associated with low response rates among patients with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) who were ineligible for or experienced failure of autologous hematopoietic cell ...

Al Identifies Features of Tumor Cells in High-Risk Ovarian Cancer  

Scientists have developed a new test that scans the shapes of tumor cells to select women with especially aggressive ovarian cancer. A team at The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), London, created an artificial intelligence (AI) tool that looks for clusters of cells within tumors with misshapen...

hepatobiliary cancer
issues in oncology

Role of Donor Race in Liver Transplant Outcomes in African American Patients With Hepatocellular Carcinoma

Among African American adults undergoing liver transplant to treat hepatocellular carcinoma, patients whose organ donor was also African American lived significantly longer than those with a racially unmatched donor, report authors of a new study using national data. Their findings were published...

Response to Induction Chemotherapy and Outcomes With Definitive Chemoradiotherapy or Surgery in Sinonasal Undifferentiated Carcinoma

In a single-center experience reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Amit et al found that among patients with sinonasal undifferentiated carcinoma with a favorable response to induction chemotherapy, disease-specific survival was better in those receiving definitive concurrent...

lung cancer
immunotherapy

Updated Survival Analysis of KEYNOTE-024: Pembrolizumab vs Platinum-Based Chemotherapy in Previously Untreated, Advanced NSCLC

As reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology by Reck et al, an updated analysis of the phase III KEYNOTE-024 trial indicates continued overall survival benefit of first-line pembrolizumab vs platinum-based chemotherapy in patients with advanced non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with a...

colorectal cancer
solid tumors
hematologic malignancies
pancreatic cancer
symptom management

FDA Pipeline: Designations for Treatments of Graft-vs-Host-Disease, Colorectal Cancer, Pancreatic Cancer, and More

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued the following new designations and clearances: Fast Track Designation for Itolizumab for the Treatment of Acute Graft-vs-Host Disease The FDA granted Fast Track designation to itolizumab for the treatment of acute graft-vs-host ...

breast cancer
gynecologic cancers
issues in oncology

BRCA Exchange: Resource Aggregates Data on BRCA Variants

A global resource that includes data on thousands of inherited variants in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes is available to the public. The BRCA Exchange was created through the BRCA Challenge, a long-term demonstration project initiated by the Global Alliance for Genomics and...

skin cancer
immunotherapy

Molecular Profiles of BRAF-Mutant Melanomas and Response to Therapy

A study investigating the clinicopathologic features of BRAF V600E– and V600K–mutant melanomas and whether genotype affects response to immunotherapy found that the mutations not only have different clinical phenotypes, but also different molecular features and different...

Study Identifies Prognostic Biomarker in HPV-Related Head and Neck Cancers

A study investigating how to identify and treat patients with high- and low-risk human papillomavirus (HPV)-related oropharyngeal squamous cell carcinoma has demonstrated variations in HPV-related molecules among HPV-positive cases of the disease. Using their findings, the investigators developed a ...

issues in oncology
global cancer care

Patient Navigation Program Reduces Time to Treatment in Patients With Cancer

Global Cancer Institute recently announced the results of its Patient Navigation Program in Mexico City. The average time to referral before the program’s inception was 5 months, but the implementation of patient navigators reduced that average to 7 days. These findings were published by ...

leukemia
myelodysplastic syndromes

Study Finds Elevated Risk of MDS and AML After Chemotherapy for Most Solid Tumors

Findings from a new study by researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) show that patients treated with chemotherapy for most solid tumors from 2000 to 2014 experienced an increased risk of therapy-related myelodysplastic syndrome/acute myeloid leukemia (MDS/AML). The study, which used U.S. ...

Pembrolizumab in Pretreated Advanced Esophageal Adenocarcinoma or Squamous Cell Carcinoma

As reported in JAMA Oncology by Shah et al, the phase II KEYNOTE-180 trial has shown that pembrolizumab produces durable responses in some patients with pretreated locally advanced or metastatic esophageal adenocarcinoma or squamous cell carcinoma. Study Details In the trial, 121 patients with...

issues in oncology
symptom management

Incidence of Acute Kidney Injury in Patients Receiving Systemic Therapy for Cancer

In a Canadian population–based cohort study reported in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Kitchlu et al found that acute kidney injury (AKI) is common in patients receiving systemic therapy for newly diagnosed cancer and has increased in incidence in recent years. Study Details...

Immediate vs Deferred Cytoreductive Nephrectomy in Patients With Metastatic Renal Cell Carcinoma Treated With Sunitinib

In a trial with a modified primary endpoint due to slow accrual reported in JAMA Oncology, Bex et al found that deferred cytoreductive nephrectomy after sunitinib did not improve 28-week progression-free rate (PFR) vs immediate nephrectomy followed by sunitinib in patients with metastatic renal...

27% Drop in Overall U.S. Cancer Mortality Rate From 1991 to 2016

A steady 25-year decline has resulted in a 27% drop in the overall cancer death rate in the United States between 1991 and 2016. The data come from “Cancer Statistics, 2019,” the American Cancer Society’s annual report on cancer rates and trends. The report was published in CA: A...

Higher Incidence of Brain and CNS Tumors Among People Living in Appalachia

A recent study published by Ostrom et al in the Journal of Neuro-Oncology showed that compared to the rest of the United States, the Appalachian region has a 5% higher incidence of malignant primary brain tumors and other central nervous system (CNS) tumors, a higher mortality rate due to ...

Unplanned Hospitalizations in the Year After Cancer Diagnosis

In a California population–based cohort study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Whitney et al found that 67% of hospitalizations in the year after cancer diagnosis were unplanned, with 67% of such hospitalizations originating in the emergency department. The study involved data...

Overall Survival of Black vs White Men Receiving Docetaxel Regimens for Metastatic Castration-Resistant Prostate Cancer

In an analysis reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Halabi et al found that overall survival was improved for black men vs white men receiving regimens containing docetaxel and prednisone for metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer. As noted by the investigators, several studies...

prostate cancer
immunotherapy

MSI-H/dMMR Tumors in Prostate Cancer and Response to Immune Checkpoint Blockade

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Abida et al found that approximately 3% of patients with prostate cancer had microsatellite instability–high (MSI-H)/mismatch repair–deficient (dMMR) tumors and that some of these patients exhibited durable responses to treatment with immune...

Association Between Sun Exposure and BMI in the Development of Nonmelanoma Skin Cancer

Exposure to the sun, whether cumulative or intermittent, is a known risk factor for the development of nonmelanoma skin cancer (NMSC). Past studies have found that greater body mass index (BMI) actually lessens the risk of women developing NMSCs. With this in mind, researchers sought to determine...

prostate cancer
issues in oncology

Gleason 6 Score May Underestimate Prostate Cancer Mortality Risk in Black Men

Black men diagnosed with prostate cancer classified as low risk may actually have a more aggressive form of the disease that is more likely to be fatal than in nonblack men placed in the same prognostic category, according to results from a new study published as a research letter by Mahal et al in ...

Detection of Relapse in Children and Adolescents With Nongerminomatous Malignant Germ Cell Tumors

In a report from the Children’s Oncology Group published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Fonseca et al found that relapse in children and adolescents with nongerminomatous malignant germ cell tumors (MGCTs) was most frequently identified by tumor markers rather than imaging. Study...

Neoadjuvant Degarelix vs Triptorelin in Premenopausal Women Receiving Letrozole for Locally Advanced, Endocrine-Responsive Breast Cancer

In a phase II trial reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Dellapasqua et al found that neoadjuvant treatment with the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) antagonist degarelix was more effective than the GnRH agonist triptorelin in achieving ovarian function suppression (OFS) in...

Risk of Intracranial Malignancy After Stereotactic Radiosurgery for Nonmalignant Conditions

In a retrospective cohort study reported in The Lancet Oncology, Wolf et al found that patients undergoing Gamma Knife stereotactic radiosurgery for nonmalignant neurosurgical conditions did not appear to be at long-term increased risk of radiation-associated secondary intracranial malignancy or...

colorectal cancer
issues in oncology

2018 Young-Onset Colorectal Cancer Survey Report Covers Disease Stage at Diagnosis and More

Nearly three-quarters of patients with young-onset colorectal cancer are diagnosed with an advanced stage of the disease, a significantly higher percentage than has been reported for their more mature peers, according to a report from the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. The findings of...

Quality of Life and Patient- and Clinician-Reported Cumulative Toxicity

New research has found that quality of life for people with cancer is reduced by an accumulation of low-level toxicities just as much as it is from high-level adverse events. Additionally, patient-reported outcomes were more likely to reflect the impact on a patient’s physical well-being than ...

Analysis of Cause of Death in Patients With Follicular Lymphoma in the Rituximab Era

In a pooled analysis of French and U.S. follicular lymphoma cohorts reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Sarkozy and colleagues found that lymphoma was the most common cause of death during the first decade of the rituximab era in treatment of the disease. The study involved data from...

sarcoma
issues in oncology

Regionalization of Surgery for Retroperitoneal Sarcoma Surgery to High-Volume Hospitals

In a study reported in the Journal of Oncology Practice, Villano et al found that regionalization of retroperitoneal sarcoma surgery—recognized as a complex cancer surgery—to high-volume hospitals has been slower than that observed for similarly complex pancreatic cancer surgery over...

Maintenance Olaparib in Newly Diagnosed Advanced Ovarian Cancer

As reported in The New England Journal of Medicine by Moore et al, the phase III SOLO-1 trial has shown that maintenance with olaparib, following complete or partial response to platinum-based chemotherapy, significantly prolonged progression-free survival vs placebo in...

Negative Colonoscopy and Long-Term Risk of Colorectal Cancer

Ten years after a negative colonoscopy, patients who were rescreened for colorectal cancer had a lower risk of being diagnosed with and were less likely to die from colorectal cancer compared with those who did not undergo colorectal cancer screening, according to a study published by Lee et al...

issues in oncology
cost of care

New Study Examines Orphan Drug Exclusivity and Pricing

A new report commissioned by the National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) and published by the IQVIA Institute demonstrates that the 7-year market exclusivity granted to drugs designated under the Orphan Drug Act of 1983 for rare diseases is working as intended. In nearly every case, orphan...

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