Have You Heard?

A Compilation of Quotes From Oncology-Related News

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“It’s not a matter of if a child will be seriously poisoned or killed. It’s a matter of when.”

Lee Cantrell, PharmD, Director of the San Diego Division of the California Poison Control System and Professor of Clinical Pharmacy at the University of California, San Francisco, commenting on the potential dangers of “e-liquids,” electronic cigarette refills containing liquid nicotine along with flavorings and other chemicals. (Richtel M: Selling a poison by the barrel: Liquid nicotine for e-cigarettes. The New York Times, March 20, 2014)


“There is a contradiction in having these dangerous and devastating tobacco products on the shelves of a retail chain that services health care needs.”

Excerpted from a letter written by a group of state attorney generals to retailers with pharmacies in their stores, urging them to stop selling tobacco products. (Chris Isadore @CNNMoney, March 17, 2014)


“We are going to have to be more thoughtful about the patients included and the types of trials. We want to run trials that have an impact instead of conducting large trials that cost millions of dollars and find an improvement in progression-free survival of 5 weeks, for example.”

Robert Dreicer, MD, Chair of the Department of Solid Tumor Oncology, Cleveland Clinic, remarking on ASCO’s call to employ clinical trial designs that aim to significantly extend the lives of people with cancer. (Nelson R: Time for ‘smaller and smarter’ clinical trials, says ASCO. Medscape Medical News, March 18, 2014)


“There is a marked deterioration of access to the premier cancer centers for people who are signing up for these plans.”

Dan Mendelson, CEO of Avalere Health, a market research firm in, Washington, DC, noting that some of the leading cancer centers are often not included in insurance plans offered under the Affordable Care Act.  (Alonso-Zaldivar R: Health law concerns for cancer patients. Associated Press, March 19, 2014)


“One can happen. Two all of a sudden raises eyebrows.”

Noah Kauff, MD, Director of the Ovarian Cancer Screening and Prevention Service and attending physician on the Clinical Genetics Service, at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, discussing a study, presented at the Society of Gynecologic Oncology Annual Meeting, that found four cases of aggressive uterine cancer years in women with BRCA 1 mutations years after the women had surgery to remove their ovaries. (Marchione M: Study ties breast gene to high-risk uterine cancer. Associated Press, March 24, 2014)


“It is possible that ceritinib may become another standard therapy for patients with ALK-positive lung cancer.”

Alice Shaw, MD, PhD, thoracic oncologist at Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, Boston, and lead author of an article in The New England Journal of Medicine reporting that ceritinib was highly active in patients with advanced, ALK-rearranged non–small cell lung cancer, including patients with disease progression during treatment with crizotinib (Xalkori). (Reinberg S: Experimental drug shows promise for drug-resistant lung cancer. HealthDay, March 26, 2014). ■

Have You Heard? is compiled by ­Charlotte Bath.