Newsweek’s Aimee Swartz writes about how Cancer Commons aims to change the treatment landscape in a new feature article. From the piece:
But what about those patients who’ve had an exceptional response outside a clinical trial? After all, only about 3 percent of the 1.7 million people diagnosed with cancer each year in the U.S. take part in one. “Surely there are other super responders, but unless these cases are published in medical journals or shared at medical meetings, we just are not hearing about them,” Carbone says. It is not uncommon for research data to be published years after being generated.
This is where Tenenbaum re-enters the picture. He drew on his experience as a super responder to start Cancer Commons. The nonprofit organization, based in Palo Alto, California, aims to place data relating to exceptional responders in a free, searchable online database. “If there was another patient who had similar mutations as me and who had a miraculous response to a drug, I’d want to know before I made any decisions about my treatment. Wouldn’t you?” he says.
Tomorrow, Cancer Commons Executive Director William Wong will speak at the C-Change Big Data Meeting in Alexandria, VA. C-Change is an organization that brings together cancer leaders from across the U.S. to discuss major issues in the field. William will show how Cancer Commons is using data to improve the patient experience at every stage of treatment.
The Arizona Capitol Times tells the story of how Marty Tenenbaum’s personal experience with cancer led him to found Cancer Commons:
The result of Tenenbaum’s quest for effective personalized medicine is the nonprofit network of patients, doctors and scientists known as Cancer Commons. The organization’s mission is to ensure that patients and physicians have the knowledge they need to make the best possible personalized treatment decisions while continuously updating that knowledge based on each patient’s response.
The project is ongoing for Tenenbaum and his staff, since the more information they gather from individual cancer patients, the more specific – and effective – their treatments can be.
“It’s what gets me up every morning. It’s huge,” he said.
Update: This event has passed, but you can watch the full conversation here:
See Cancer Commons founder Marty Tenenbaum discuss “Big Questions, Big Data, and Big Science” on March 19 in Phoenix, Arizona. The event is hosted by AZBio, and will feature Marty in conversation with Joshua LaBaer, MD, PhD, of Arizona State University’s Biodesign Institute. Visit the event page to learn more and register to attend.
Seventeen years ago, Cancer Commons founder Marty Tenenbaum learned he had melanoma. He leapt into action. He wanted the best treatment options he could possibly find.
“When you’re diagnosed, you’re put into this strange new world with no guidance,” Marty said. “You hit the search engines, and you’re just overwhelmed with information that’s mostly irrelevant, incomprehensible, or out of date.” Continue reading…
See Cancer Commons founder Marty Tenenbaum speak about the exciting projects underway at Cancer Commons at the upcoming 2014 SINAInnovations conference on Wednesday, Nov 19. The conference is being held by the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. From the conference website:
This year’s theme “Engineering and Medicine” will include keynote addresses, short talks, lunchtime breakout sessions and demos in areas focusing on breakthroughs in material science, nanotechnologies and imaging; advances in genomics technologies; mobile application development and wearable technologies; cultivating how medicine and engineering interface and how advances in engineering are transforming medicine, biology and global health.
Register to be there in person in New York, NY, or visit the SINAInnovations website at 9:05 am EST (12:05 pm PST) on Nov 19 to see Marty speak via the live Webcast.
Pathfinder supporter Heather Rangel held a special fundraising event for Cancer Commons on Monday. The party celebrated the life of her good friend Jackie Tran, who recently passed from ovarian cancer. In Jackie’s honor, Heather brought together her friends and family to raise funds for Cancer Commons. The night opened with poignant words from Heather and Cancer Commons founder Marty Tenenbaum, as well as an uplifting video that encouraged gratitude. A performance by the band Rusted Root drew guests to the dance floor for a joyful celebration.
Come support Cancer Commons and celebrate the life of Jackie Tran, a close friend of our Pathfinder donor Heather Rangel. The event features the band Rusted Root, and will take place at the Fox Forum in Redwood City, CA, on Monday, November 3 at 7 PM. Please feel free to invite your friends and family. Every dollar raised will go towards creating the world’s most valuable resource for cancer patients. Click here to purchase your ticket(s).
Cancer Commons aims to put the most up-to-date information about cancer treatment into the hands of patients. To keep this information current, Cancer Commons’ Chief Scientist Emma Shtivelman and collaborators periodically comb the scientific literature to compile and publish review papers that serve as “consensus models” of different cancer types and how they’re treated. A new consensus model was recently published for prostate cancer in the scientific journal Oncotarget.
The new consensus model describes the molecular underpinnings of prostate cancer, and how different genetic mutations and other molecular-scale changes are used to develop different treatments. The model serves as the scientific foundation of the personalized, patient-friendly information Cancer Commons provides to prostate cancer patients, and it will be updated as new insights emerge.