Nivolumab Shows Durable Benefit for Advanced Melanoma

Excerpt:

“Patients with surgically resected stage III or stage IV melanoma at high risk for recurrence maintained longer RFS after adjuvant treatment with nivolumab then standard ipilimumab, according to long-term efficacy results from the CheckMate 238 clinical trial presented at ASCO Annual Meeting.

“‘These more mature data continue to demonstrate durable clinical benefit with nivolumab and further support its use for resected stage III or IV melanoma,’ Jeffrey S. Weber, MD, PhD, deputy director of Perlmutter Cancer Center at NYU Langone Health, said during his presentation.”

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Abiraterone May Be More Effective in Black Men With Prostate Cancer

Excerpt:

“Black men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) who received hormonal therapy with the adrenal inhibitor abiraterone had greater and longer-lasting responses compared with white men, according to the results of a late-breaking study (abstract LBA5009) presented at the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, held in Chicago June 1–5.

“The prospective study found that black men were more likely to have a decline in prostate-specific antigen (PSA) and had a longer median time to PSA worsening than white men. The findings were presented by Daniel George, MD, professor of medicine and surgery at Duke University.”

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No Survival Bump With More Frequent PSA Screens for Localized Prostate Cancer

Excerpt:

“Undergoing more frequent prostate-specific antigen (PSA) screening after radical prostatectomy or primary radiation for localized prostate cancer was not associated with improved overall survival (OS), regardless of disease risk, according to results of the AFT-30 study (abstract 6503) presented at the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting, held June 1–5 in Chicago.

“‘Based on our study results, PSA testing every 3 to 6 months may represent overutilization of care,’ said Ronald Chen, MD, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. ‘This study provides empiric data to inform future guidelines and clinical practice.'”

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First Study of Neoadjuvant Use of PARP Inhibitor Shows Promise for Early-Stage, BRCA+ Breast Cancer Patients

Excerpt:

In a small Phase II study of early-stage breast cancer patients with BRCA1/2 mutations, researchers at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center found that more than half of the women who took the PARP inhibitor talazoparib once daily prior to surgery had no evidence of disease at the time of surgery. If further validated in larger, confirmatory trials, the oral medication could replace chemotherapy for these patients.

“The trial, which expands upon a feasibility study published in npj Breast Cancer, was presented today as an oral presentation at the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting by Jennifer Litton, M.D., associate professor of Breast Medical Oncology.”

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New Approach to Immunotherapy Leads to Complete Response in Breast Cancer Patient

Excerpt:

A novel approach to immunotherapy developed by researchers at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) has led to the complete regression of breast cancer in a patient who was unresponsive to all other treatments. This patient received the treatment in a clinical trial led by Steven A. Rosenberg, M.D., Ph.D., chief of the Surgery Branch at NCI’s Center for Cancer Research (CCR), and the findings were published June 4, 2018 in Nature Medicine. NCI is part of the National Institutes of Health.

” ‘We’ve developed a high-throughput method to identify  present in a cancer that are recognized by the immune system,’ Dr. Rosenberg said. ‘This research is experimental right now. But because this new approach to immunotherapy is dependent on mutations, not on cancer type, it is in a sense a blueprint we can use for the  of many types of cancer.’ ”

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Many Women With Breast Cancer May Not Need Chemo, but Beware Misleading Headlines

Excerpt:

Findings from a major international clinical trial suggest a significant number of women with the most common form of early-stage breast cancer do not need chemotherapy after surgery.

“The results of the so-called TAILORx trial were presented yesterday at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology and concurrently published in the New England Journal of Medicine.”

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ALEX Trial Results Show Alectinib Further Outpacing Crizotinib in ALK+ NSCLC

Excerpt:

Updated results of the global phase III ALEX trial comparing alectinib with crizotinib as first-line treatment against ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer show a median progression-free survival (PFS) of 34.8 months in 152 patients treated with alectinib versus 10.9 months in 151 patients treated with crizotinib.

” ‘Think of it like a horse race, only it’s not about who crosses the finish line first, but how far the horses can run,’ says D. Ross Camidge, MD, Ph.D., the Joyce Zeff Chair in Lung Cancer Research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, director of Thoracic Oncology at the CU School of Medicine, and the study’s first author. ‘In this trial, it’s as if half of the people “riding” crizotinib had exhausted their horses at about 11 months. For patients on alectinib, when this trial first started reporting data last year, more than half were still on their horses, still running. Now enough time has elapsed to estimate the median performance of these alectinib ‘horses’ more accurately.’ ”

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Keytruda Alone Bests Chemo in Advanced NSCLC

Excerpt:

“Patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) treated with pembrolizumab (Keytruda) had a greater median survival than patients treated with standard chemotherapy, even if the former had low levels of PD-L1, researchers reported here.

“Depending on the percentage of PD-L1 expression in the tumor, survival was between 4 and 8 months longer for patients treated with immunotherapy alone versus those treated with chemotherapy, according to Gilberto Lopes, MD, MBA, of the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami, and colleagues.”

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Six Tips to Spot Cancer ‘Fake News’

Excerpt:

Cancer is a popular topic for the media, as people care and worry about it in equal measure.

“News reports help people find out what researchers are working on, and how charitable donations are being spent. They also helps generate interest in the amazing science going on. But perhaps most of all, health stories and clinical trial results have a direct impact on people, raising interest in the latest discoveries further.

“And when it comes to , the emotion that’s tied to the subject means that scientific results must be discussed in a measured and accurate way. And most of the time that’s exactly what happens.”

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