Does Efficacy Require Toxicity, or Is It Time to Reconsider Presurgical Endocrine Therapy for Estrogen-Receptor-Positive Breast Cancer?

Excerpt:

“Neoadjuvant endocrine therapy – designed to reduce the size of breast tumors before surgical removal – appears to be as effective as neoadjuvant chemotherapy for patients with localized, estrogen-receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer with considerably fewer side effects. The study conducted by a Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) Cancer Center research team appears in the current print issue of JAMA Oncology and was published online earlier this year.”

Go to full article.

If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our ASK Cancer Commons service.


Tamoxifen Linked to Reduced Contralateral Breast Cancer Risk

Excerpt:

“Use of tamoxifen and aromatase inhibitors during and after breast cancer treatment were found to reduce the risk of contralateral breast cancer in a community healthcare setting, according to a study published in JAMA Oncology.

“The authors of the real-world retrospective study found that among estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer patients who survived at least 5 years, tamoxifen use for 4 years or more prevented an estimated three contralateral breast cancer cases for every 100 women by year 10. This absolute risk reduction is consistent with prior results from tamoxifen clinical trials, according to study authors led by Gretchen L. Gierach, PhD, MPH, of the division of cancer epidemiology and genetics at the National Cancer Institute.”

Go to full article.

If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our ASK Cancer Commons service.


Encouraging Results For Ribociclib In Advanced Breast Cancer

Excerpt:

“At the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress this week, investigators presented data for a new and potentially important drug, ribociclib (Novartis). This oral medication is clearly active in hormone receptor-positive (ER+ or PR+) breast cancer. The findings of the MONALEESA trial were published in the NEJM.

“The main result is that for the most common form of advanced breast cancer, adding ribociclib to letrozole significantly improved progression-free survival (PFS), as compared to adding a placebo. After a year and a half (18 months) in this randomized, controlled clinical trial, PFS among women receiving ribociclib was 63.0%, vs. 42.2% in the placebo arm. That’s a big difference, when you consider that 99% of the patients on the study have stage 4, metastatic breast cancer.”

Go to full article.

If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our Lifeline service.


Results of Two Practice-Changing Breast Cancer Trials Upheld

Excerpt:

“Results of two pivotal breast cancer trials reported at the 2016 ASCO Annual Meeting confirmed the practice-changing findings that resulted from earlier findings.

“The phase III PALOMA-2 trial confirmed results from the smaller, open-label phase II PALOMA-1 trial that led to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of the cyclin-dependent kinase 4/6 inhibitor palbociclib (Ibrance). The drug was approved in combination with letrozole for the first-line treatment of metastatic disease.

“ ‘These data represent the longest front-line improvement in median progression-free survival seen to date in women with advanced estrogen receptor (ER)-positive breast cancer,’ said Dennis Slamon, MD, Director of Clinical/Translational Research and Professor of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, and Director of the Revlon/UCLA Women’s Cancer Research Program.”

Go to full article.

Do you have questions about this story? Let us know in a comment below. If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our Ask Cancer Commons service.


New Research on Triple Negative Breast Cancer Emerges at ASCO 2016


The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) meeting of 2016 is behind us, but oncologists, patients, and journalists are still analyzing the most interesting presentations made there. Below, we describe some of the more prominent results in triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), both promising and disappointing.

Continue reading…


Palbociclib Addition to Letrozole Improved PFS in ER+/HER2- Breast Cancer

Excerpt:

“Palbociclib (Ibrance), when added to letrozole, increased the median progression-free survival (PFS) rate in patients with ER-positive, HER2-negative advanced or metastatic breast cancer by >10 months, according to results from the phase III PALOMA-2 trial presented at the 2016 ASCO Annual Meeting. 

“The risk of disease progressed was reduced by 42 with the addition of palbociclib, a CDK4/6 inhibitor, when compared with letrozole alone. The combination of palbociclib and letrozole was granted an accelerated approval in February 2015, based on the phase II PALOMA-1 study. These results from PALOMA-2 provide confirmation of the combination’s benefits in the frontline setting.

“ ‘These data represent the longest frontline improvement in median PFS seen to date in women with advanced ER+ breast cancer,’ senior study author Dennis J. Slamon, MD, PhD, chief of the Division of Hematology/Oncology in the UCLA Department of Medicine, said when presenting the findings at ASCO.”

Go to full article.

Do you have questions about this story? Let us know in a comment below. If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our Ask Cancer Commons service.


Advanced Breast Cancer Slowed with Avastin Combo (CME/CE)

Excerpt:

“Adding bevacizumab (Avastin) to letrozole (Femara) improved progression-free survival (PFS) in estrogen receptor-positive metastatic breast cancer (ER+MBC) but not other outcomes, an open-label, multicenter phase III trial showed.

“While median PFS increased by 4.6 months in patients who received combined therapy versus letrozole alone, there was no significant difference in overall survival (hazard ratio 0.87; 95% CI 0.65-1.18; P=0.188), Maura N. Dickler, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and colleagues reported online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

“In addition, there was a marked increase in grade 3 to 4 toxicities, particularly hypertension (24% versus 2%) and proteinuria (11% versus 0%), the researchers said, emphasizing that the role of bevacizumab in this setting will need to be clarified with research on predictive markers.”

Go to full article.

Do you have questions about this story? Let us know in a comment below. If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our Ask Cancer Commons service.


Oncotype Dx Gene Test Has a Big Impact on Oncologists' Chemo Recommendations

Excerpt:

“The 21-gene Recurrence Score (RS) assay significantly influenced clinicians’ decisions to recommend breast cancer patients for adjuvant chemotherapy, analysis of a population-based dataset showed.

“Used to predict disease recurrence and benefit of chemotherapy in estrogen receptor-positive, lymph node-negative early-stage breast cancer (EBC), the assay had the strongest association with recommendation for chemotherapy, with an adjusted odds ratio (aOR) of 83 for high assay scores and 12 for intermediate scores, both relative to low scores.

“Test use was significantly associated with younger age, white race, academic centers, private insurance, and pT2/pN0(i+) grade 2 to 3 disease, Peter Kabos, MD, of the University of Denver, Aurora, CO, and colleagues reported online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.”

Go to full article.

Do you have questions about this story? Let us know in a comment below. If you’re wondering whether this story applies to your own cancer case or a loved one’s, we invite you to use our Ask Cancer Commons service.


Study Refines the Risk for Breast Cancer Recurrence

“The risk for local recurrence of breast cancer decreases as event-free survival lengthens, according to an analysis of a large database from the Netherlands.

“The study, which also demonstrated that recurrence risk varies substantially by subtype, should help physicians counsel women with breast cancer.

” ‘The risk of local recurrence as a first event within 5 years after diagnosis was low overall, at 3%. It differed by subtype, with ER-positive, PR-positive, HER2-negative breast cancer with the lowest risk and triple-negative with the highest risk,’ said Martine Moossdorff, MD, who is currently a doctoral candidate at Maastricht University Medical Center, in the Netherlands.”