CHICAGO – Researchers conducted a retrospective analysis of consecutive, prospectively molecularly profiled patients with advanced cancer who participated in a large, personalized medicine trial. They found that using molecular tests of tumors to select targeted therapy resulted in slower cancer growth and prolonged survival across a diverse set of cancer types. Of the 1,307 patients with at least one genetic change in the cancer, the 3-year overall survival rate was 15% in the matched targeted group compared to 7% in the non-matched group. The 10-year overall survival rate was 6% for the matched group and 1% in the non-matched group. Overall survival in the matched group plateaued, starting at 3.2 years (11% were still alive).
CHICAGO – An analysis of pooled data from nine randomized phase III trials of more than 8,000 men with advanced prostate cancer who received chemotherapy shows chances of survival are as good for black men as white men. The median survival was the same in black men and white men overall (21 months), but black men had a 19% lower risk for death than white men when researchers adjusted for various important risk factors that affect survival.
CHICAGO – An analysis of cancer registry data from a California hospital system shows that women with head and neck cancer were less likely to receive intensive chemotherapy (35% vs. 46%) and radiation (60% vs. 70%) compared to men. Controlling for factors such as age and serious medical conditions, a mathematical model also shows that the ratio of cancer to non-cancer mortality was two times higher for women than the ratio for men. When taken collectively, the findings raise the possibility women with head and neck cancer may be undertreated. The authors explain that there are some confounding factors, so further prospective investigation is necessary to fully address this possibility.
CHICAGO – A federally funded randomized study demonstrated that the use of geriatric assessment in routine care of older adults with advanced cancer significantly improved doctor-patient communication about age-related concerns as well as patient satisfaction with the communication.
CHICAGO – An analysis of health claims data from two demographically similar regions on either side of the U.S. and Canada border shows that a common treatment for advanced colorectal cancer costs twice as much in Western Washington State (WW) than in British Columbia (BC) -- $12,345 vs. $6,195 monthly per patient. Despite the higher cost, the patients on the U.S. side of the border are not living longer than those on the Canadian side.
CHICAGO – In a prospective clinical trial of 100 men with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer, the response to the hormone treatment abiraterone (Zytiga®) was greater and longer lasting in black men than in white men. Black men were more likely to have a decline in prostate-serum antigen (PSA) -- a sign of prostate cancer response -- and had a 5-month longer median time to PSA worsening than white men (16.6 vs. 11.5 months).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A federally funded, randomized clinical trial of 357 people receiving radiation for head and neck cancer, using mobile and sensor technology to remotely monitor patient symptoms, resulted in less severe symptoms related to both the cancer and its treatment (both general and cancer-related).
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI)-supported randomized clinical trial of cancer survivors showed that eight weeks of either acupuncture or cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) decreased the severity of insomnia among cancer survivors, though improvements were greatest among patients receiving cognitive behavioral therapy. The study will be presented at the upcoming 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – An economic model comparing different types of genetic testing in metastatic non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) found that using next-generation sequencing (NGS) to test for all known lung cancer-related gene changes at the time of diagnosis was more cost-effective and faster than testing one or a limited number of genes at a time.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A phase III randomized clinical trial of 4,089 women with HER2-positive, early-stage breast cancer found that taking trastuzumab (Herceptin) for 6 months was non-inferior to the current standard of 12 months. The disease-free survival rate at four years was 89.4% with 6 months of therapy and 89.8% with 12 months of therapy. In addition, only 4% of women in the 6-month arm stopped trastuzumab early because of cardiac problems, compared with 8% in the 12-month arm.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – In a federally funded, randomized phase III clinical trial performed by the Children’s Oncology Group (COG), 90% of children and young adults with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (T-ALL) or T-cell lymphoblastic lymphoma (T-LL) were alive four years after starting treatment regimens on this trial, and 84% were cancer free. These are the highest survival rates for these T-cell malignancies reported to date, according to the authors.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. – An analysis of 1,800 lung cancer screening sites nationwide found that only 1.9% of more than 7 million current and former heavy smokers were screened for lung cancer in 2016, despite United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) and ASCO screening recommendations. This study, the first assessment of lung cancer screening rates since those recommendations were issued in 2013, will be presented at the upcoming 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago.
Data from a new survey show that as many as 80% of oncologists have discussed medical marijuana use with their patients. According to the authors, this is the first nationally-representative survey to examine oncologists’ practices and beliefs on the subject since the implementation of state medical marijuana laws. The research published online today in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) will recognize Douglas W. Blayney, MD, FASCO, medical oncologist and Professor at Stanford University School of Medicine, with the Joseph V. Simone Award and Lecture for Excellence in Quality and Safety in the Care of Patients with Cancer. Dr. Blayney will be presented the award at the 2018 ASCO Quality Care Symposium September 28-29, in Phoenix, Arizona.
The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) announced today that Trevor Royce, MS, MD, MPH, and Sheetal Kircher, MD, have been selected for the ASCO Health Policy Fellowship Program. Now entering its third year, the fellowship program offers oncologists the opportunity to gain the knowledge-base, skills, and experience necessary to shape regulatory and legislative policies that directly affect the practice environment and impact patients with cancer and their care teams.