ONCOLOGY Vol 11 No 2 | Oncology

Postmastectomy Radiation: Then and Now

February 01, 1997

Dr. Fowble's well-written review concludes that, in certain subgroups of patients with breast cancer (ie, patients with primary tumors larger than 5 cm, four or more positive axillary lymph nodes, or tumor involvement of the pectoralis fascia),

Key Gene Plays Crucial Role in Malignant Transformation

February 01, 1997

A major gene essential for controlling the synthesis of hereditary material and cell proliferation is also critically involved in determining the extent of malignant growth of cancer cells, reports a study published in a recent issue of the Proceedings of

Gene Associated With Spread of Prostate Cancer Identified

February 01, 1997

Researchers at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center have identified a gene that may control the metastatic spread of prostate cancer and tumor growth. If confirmed, the preliminary findings may eventually help doctors identify patients whose

Lurie Cancer Center Support Grant Renewed

February 01, 1997

Steven T. Rosen, MD, FACP, director of the Robert H. Lurie Cancer Center of Northwestern University, announced that the Center has been awarded a 4-year competitive renewal of its Cancer Center Support Grant (CCSG) from the National

Investigators Pinpoint Gene That Suppresses Spread of Melanoma

February 01, 1997

A new gene, designated KiSS-1, has been isolated from cells of malignant melanoma, in which metastatic potential was suppressed by the introduction of normal human chromosome 6. According to the research report in the December 4th

New Technology Helps Scientists Study Early Cancer

February 01, 1997

For years, doctors have looked at tissue biopsies and spotted unusual cells that seem to have early signs of cancer. The problem is that, until recently, doctors have never had the right tools to extract the cells from the tissue, leaving them with no

NCI Launches Study of High-Dose Chemotherapy With Stem-Cell Transplants for Ovarian Cancer

February 01, 1997

In an effort to resolve one of the ongoing controversies in cancer care, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) has launched the first large national study of high-dose chemotherapy for ovarian cancer with transplantation of bone marrow blood stem cells.

Raising the US Retirement Age Could Save Billions in Social Security Payments

February 01, 1997

Raising the normal retirement age in the United States to age 70 could save the federal government billions of dollars each year and help shore up the ailing Social Security trust fund over the long term, according to two university researchers.

Molecule May Be a Marker for Deadly Prostate Cancer

February 01, 1997

Improved diagnostic techniques for prostate cancer, the most common cancer among American men, have led to a threefold increase in the rate of diagnosis since 1988. But that presents physicians with a dilemma: Many of these early cancers are

Antiestrogens: Past, Present, and Future

February 01, 1997

Within the last 25 years, laboratory research on estrogen receptors and the development of the antiestrogen tamoxifen has dramatically refined and expanded the role of hormonal therapy in the treatment of breast cancer. An assessment of antiestrogens and their role in breast cancer therapy clinical practice was the focus of a roundtable symposium entitled "Antiestrogens: Past, Present, and Future," held in July 1996. The articles compiled in this supplement detail the discussions at the meeting of significant issues related to antiestrogen therapy, including patient selection, duration of treatment, secondary effects, and development of new antiestrogenic compounds.

Clinical Studies of IL-11, New Platelet Growth Factor, Presented

February 01, 1997

Recombinant human interleukin-11 (IL-11 [Neumega]) stimulates platelet production and inhibits inflammation in clinical studies in cancer patients, according to research presented at a symposium held last summer in New York City. The potential

Oral Vinorelbine Promising and Well Tolerated in Patients With Advanced Breast Cancer

February 01, 1997

A group of French scientists concluded that oral vinorelbine (Navelbine) administered at a weekly dose of 80 mg/m² is well tolerated by patients with advanced breast cancer. While intravenous vinorelbine has previously proven to be highly effective

Cigarette Smoking Before and After an Excise Tax Increase and an Antismoking Campaign--Massachusetts, 1990-1996

February 01, 1997

In November 1992, residents of Massachusetts approved a ballot petition (Question 1) that increased the tax on each pack of cigarettes from 26¢ to 51¢ beginning January 1, 1993, and requested that the legislature spend the proceeds on tobacco

Viatical Proceeds Tax-Free if Individuals Qualify

February 01, 1997

Physicians can expect to see more requests for medical records by companies offering viatical settlements to terminally ill or chronically ill patients who meet certain criteria as certified by their physicians. The viatical industry, which has been marketing its services primarily to AIDS patients through gay publications and networks, is maturing as a result of new federal legislation granting tax-free status to the proceeds and as viatical companies expand their marketing efforts to the population at large.

The Crisis of Cancer: Psychological Impact on Family Caregivers

February 01, 1997

Drs. Blanchard, Albrecht, and Ruckdeschel provide a whirlwind tour of research on families and cancer. The article has an ambitious mission. It attempts to establish how cancer affects families, through a review of studies that assess the psychological

Postmastectomy Radiation: Then and Now

February 01, 1997

Postmastectomy radiotherapy has been used since the early part of the 20th century in an effort to decrease local recurrences and potentially improve survival. It clearly reduces the rate of local chest-wall failure following mastectomy, increases relapse-

Breast Cancer Prevention Strategies

February 01, 1996

In this issue, Love and Vogel bring attention to the fact that most breast cancers are not inherited but are the result of several, varied hormonal influences. This is an important message because prevention of breast cancer for some women can be accomplished by hormone manipulation from moderate exercise, maintaining low body mass, abstention from alcohol, and lactation. The authors discuss the physiologic role of delayed pregnancy but avoid the issue in terms of preventive strategy. Many women choose to delay pregnancy in pursuit of career development for economic reasons. This makes for a difficult choice in terms of breast cancer risk, but one that should be addressed. The article proposes that lobular maturation and exposure of the breast to hormones are two key processes in breast cancer. Indeed, emerging data also suggest that excess hormonal exposure in utero may influence adult breast cancer risk.

The Crisis of Cancer: Psychological Impact on Family Caregivers

February 01, 1997

Blanchard et al provide an excellent review of the literature on the psychosocial adjustment of caregivers of the cancer patient. The importance of caregiver function and adaptation to the clinical status of the cancer patient is generally conceded, but the

Breast Cancer Prevention Strategies

February 01, 1997

The National Cancer Act of 1971 was established when then President Nixon declared the "war on cancer." Since that time, no magic bullet has been discovered, and it is apparent that we have not been victors in the war against the nation's second leading killer. Overall cancer rates have continued to rise, with only a slight decrease in mortality from breast and other cancers. Nevertheless, remarkable progress has been made in the cure of childhood cancers, Hodgkin's disease, and testicular cancer.[1,2]

Antiestrogens: Future Prospects

February 01, 1997

Tamoxifen is currently the endocrine therapy of choice for early and advanced breast cancer. Attempts to improve the therapeutic efficacy have included altering the triphenylethylene ring structure of tamoxifen, forming

Clinical Efficacy of Tamoxifen

February 01, 1997

In 1977, tamoxifen, a nonsteroidal antiestrogen, was approved in the United States for the management of advanced breast cancer in postmenopausal women. Since that time, tamoxifen's therapeutic role has grown to

Postmastectomy Radiation: Then and Now

February 01, 1997

With the increased use of doxorubicin-based chemotherapy, chemoendocrine therapy, and high-dose chemotherapy with autologous bone marrow transplantation or peripheral blood progenitor-cell reinfusion, the role

Breast Cancer Prevention Strategies

February 01, 1997

The ultimate goal of breast cancer prevention strategies is to reduce the incidence of this disease in populations. Greater understanding of recently identified associations of lactation, alcohol, exercise, and diet with breast

Clinical Relevance of Laboratory and Animal Data on Tamoxifen

February 01, 1997

Tamoxifen is being evaluated in clinical trials as a preventive agent in women at high risk for breast cancer. This new, potentially long-term therapeutic role has generated some concerns regarding safety, based on the results of

Benign and Hyperplastic Endometrial Changes Associated With Tamoxifen Use

February 01, 1997

For nearly 20 years, tamoxifen has been successfully used in the management of breast cancer. Tamoxifen is a mixed estrogen agonist/antagonist that has a proliferative effect on the endometrium. The drug has been

Tamoxifen Treatment for Breast Cancer: Concept to Gold Standard

February 01, 1997

Tamoxifen is currently the endocrine treatment of choice for all stages of breast cancer and is the gold standard for antiestrogen treatment. Over the last 25 years, the drug has revolutionized breast cancer therapy. The extension of the use of this agent has occurred because of open dialogue between the laboratory and the clinic, in which laboratory findings led to extension of clinical use. Tamoxifen was originally discovered as part of a contraceptive research program at ICI Pharmaceuticals (now Zeneca). On the basis of the estrogen dependence of many breast cancers, tamoxifen, a potent antiestrogen, was predicted to have anticancer activity. Laboratory and animal studies demonstrated efficacy in breast cancer and an ability to block binding of estradiol to the estrogen receptor of human breast cancer. Preclinical studies showed the benefit of long-term vs short-term tamoxifen treatment, a finding duplicated in the clinic. [ONCOLOGY 11(Suppl 1):7-13, 1997]

Risks and Benefits of Tamoxifen Therapy

February 01, 1997

Tamoxifen is the most widely prescribed endocrine therapy for breast cancer, with more than 7.5 million woman-years of clinical experience. Tamoxifen has both antiestrogenic and estrogenic activity. The antiestrogenic activity

Comentary (Steinherz): Toxicity of CNS Prophylaxis for Childhood Leukemia

February 01, 1997

Over the past 20 years, dramatic improvements have been made in the treatment of childhood malignancies. Today, most children who have cancer are expected to survive their disease and become healthy, productive members of society. Children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) are a good example. Although pediatric ALL was an invariably fatal disorder in the past, children with this cancer now have a 5-year event-free survival rate of more than 70%.

Toxicity of CNS Prophylaxis for Childhood Leukemia

February 01, 1997

Long-term neurotoxicity associated with central nervous system (CNS) prophylaxis for childhood acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), primarily involving physical growth and cognitive development, is an ongoing

High Costs of Recurrence Avoided With Adjuvant Treatment, According to Medico-economic Evaluation

February 01, 1997

Considering the high cost of cancer recurrence, the incremental cost of adjuvant treatment appears to be reasonable, particularly if recurrences can be avoided, maintain a group of French researchers. Dr. C. Bercez at the Oscar Lambret

The Crisis of Cancer: Psychological Impact on Family Caregivers

February 01, 1997

Cancer causes changes in the family's identity, roles, and daily functioning. Studies document that spouses are as distressed as cancer patients and that spousal and patient distress are correlated. Three major areas of caregiver

Tamoxifen's Impact on the Management of Breast Cancer: Patient Perspectives

February 01, 1997

Tamoxifen citrate has been prescribed to millions of women with breast cancer and has been one of the most important advances in breast cancer treatment over the past 25 years. Because she is a female physician, the