Oncology NEWS International Vol 16 No 8

Induction chemo increases survival in unresectable NSCLC

August 01, 2007

Pretreatment with induction chemotherapy appears to give certain inoperable non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients who undergo radiation and concurrent chemotherapy (chemoradiation) a small but statistically significant increase in overall, 5-year, and distant-metastasis-free survival, compared with concurrent chemoradiation alone, the standard of care.

Superselective chemo strategies for HCC

August 01, 2007

Delivery of chemotherapy to hepatic artery branches that only or mainly feed a tumor—so-called superselective chemoembolization and chemoinfusion—yields favorable outcomes in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC)

Zevalin/R after CHOP-R doubles CRs in follicular NHL

August 01, 2007

Among patients with follicular non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma (F-NHL), adding 90yttrium-ibritumomab tiuxetan (Zevalin) plus extended-dose rituximab (Rituxan) to a short course of CHOP plus rituximab (CHOP-R) increased complete response rates with acceptable toxicity

TH vs TCH in metastatic breast cancer: 'Take your pick'

August 01, 2007

In the first overall survival analysis of the BCIRG 007 study in metastatic breast cancer, the addition of carboplatin to a docetaxel (Taxotere)/trastuzumab (Herceptin) regimen did not improve overall survival.

Sunitinib prolongs PFS in RCC: update

August 01, 2007

An updated analysis from the pivotal phase III trial of sunitinib (Sutent) in 750 previously untreated patients with metastatic renal cell cancer (RCC) has reaffirmed the superior efficacy of sunitinib, compared with interferon-alfa (IFN-a) and shown that the agent prolongs progression-free survival (PFS) across all patient groups

ACS studies link patients' insurance status to cancer outcomes

August 01, 2007

Previous studies have shown that uninsured adults or those in public programs are less likely to receive preventive cancer care. Two new studies from American Cancer Society (ACS) researchers have found that people who were uninsured or enrolled in Medicaid were more likely to present with late-stage cancer than those with private medical insurance

US consumers are shielded from the cost of healthcare

August 01, 2007

In the article "Trustee warns that Medicare is heading for insolvency" (Oncology NEWS International July 2007, page 26), Dr. Thomas Saving made some excellent recommendations for changing how Medicare is financed.

Don't Interrupt Imatinib in GIST Patients

August 01, 2007

Interrupting imatinib (Gleevec) therapy in advanced gastrointestinal stromal tumor (GIST) patients who have had a long-lasting response results in a high risk of rapid progression, according to results of a clinical trial (BFR14) presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology 43rd Annual Meeting

New phase III trial of Velcade in newly diagnosed myeloma

August 01, 2007

Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has initiated a randomized, multicenter, company-sponsored phase III trial to determine the most effective Velcade (bortezomib)-based combination therapy with approved agents for the treatment of newly diagnosed multiple myeloma patients who are ineligible for stem cell transplantation

Nilotinib active, safe in imatinib resistant/intolerant CP-CML

August 01, 2007

Nilotinib (Tasigna), a second-generation tyrosine kinase inhibitor currently under FDA review, is highly active and safe in imatinib (Gleevec)-resistant or intolerant patients with chronic myeloid leukemia in chronic phase (CP-CML).

HPV vaccine protects older women, too, study shows

August 01, 2007

A candidate vaccine against human papillomavirus (HPV) produced by GlaxoSmithKline, AS04 (Cervarix), provides extended protection against HPV 16 and 18 not only for young women but also for women up to the age of 55

Doxil improves TTP in breast ca

August 01, 2007

After first-line treatment with chemotherapy for metastatic breast cancer, maintenance therapy with pegylated liposomal doxorubicin (Doxil) may significantly improve time to progression (TTP), according to a multicenter phase III study from the Spanish Cooperative group GEICAM reported at the 43rd Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (abstract 1007).

Very small pancreatic cystic tumors: observe or treat?

August 01, 2007

Very small pancreatic cystic tumors are safe to observe, rather than treat, in patients with no symptoms and no radiographic features associated with malignancy, according to a study of patients with neoplasms less than 3 cm in size.

ODAC advises FDA to wait for survival data on Orplatna

August 01, 2007

GPC Biotech had sought accelerated approval for its drug for the treatment of hormone-refractory (androgen-independent) prostate cancer (HRPC) that had failed prior chemotherapy on the basis of findings from a protocol-specified preliminary analysis that showed a 33% reduction in the risk of disease progression

Evista gets ODAC nod to prevent breast ca

August 01, 2007

Despite the concerns of some members of the Oncologic Drugs Advisory Committee (ODAC) and the opposition of several advocacy groups, the panel recommended that the Food and Drug Administration approve two cancer-related indications for Evista (raloxifene), Eli Lilly's selective estrogen-receptor modulator (SERM).

Methylnaltrexone reduces opioid-induced constipation

August 01, 2007

In a 3-month extension study of the methylnaltrexone phase III MNTX-302 trial, the investigational agent continued to produce laxation in patients with advanced illness being treated with opioids for pain

Recent European oncology drug approvals

August 01, 2007

Swiss drug regulators have become the first to approve Novartis' Tasigna (nilotinib) for the treatment of patients with Ph+ chronic myeloid leukemia who are resistant or intolerant to imatinib (Gleevec)