The Lynx Group

March 2014, Vol 5, No 2

In early clinical studies, bevacizumab (Avastin) showed clinical activity in patients with recurrent glioblastoma. A new randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial investigated whether the use of bevacizumab would improve the OS and PFS of patients with newly diagnosed glioblastoma (Gilbert MR, et al. N Engl J Med. 2014;370:699-708).
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Chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), a monoclonal disorder characterized by progressive accumulation and proliferation of functionally incompetent B-cells, is the most frequently diagnosed leukemia in the United States.
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Among adult survivors of childhood cancer, the lack of health insurance is a major obstacle to obtaining the recommended follow-up care. The goal of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) enacted in 2010 was to broaden insurance coverage for all Americans. A new commentary by Mueller and several health policy experts addressed the questions regarding how several provisions in the ACA could help adult survivors of childhood cancers overcome insurance-based barriers to receiving the recommended follow-up care for patients with cancer (Mueller EL, et al. J Clin Oncol. 2014;32:615-617).
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Currently, the US Food and Drug Administration–approved second-line treatments for non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) include monotherapy with docetaxel (Taxotere), erlotinib (Tarceva), or pemetrexed (Alimta). A recent phase 3 clinical trial explored the safety and efficacy of nintedanib (Vargatef)—a potent oral angiokinase inhibitor—in combination with do­cetaxel, as a second-line treatment in patients with NSCLC (Reck M, et al. Lancet Oncol. 2014;15:143-155).
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Patients with multiple myeloma (MM) who are not fit to undergo stem-cell transplantation (SCT), typically receive melphalan (Alkeran) plus prednisone in combination with either thalidomide (Thalomid) or bortezomib (Velcade). Recent studies are exploring the clinical benefit of the 4-drug induction regimen of melphalan, prednisone, bortezomib, and thalidomide, followed by maintenance with bortezomib plus thalidomide (VMPT-VT). In a recent phase 3 clinical trial, a total of 511 patients with newly diagnosed MM who were not candidates for SCT were randomized to receive VMPT-VT (N = 254) or bortezomib, melphalan, and prednisone (VMP; N = 257). The patients’ median age was 71 years, and 27% of the patients were aged >75 years (Palumbo A, et al. J Clin Oncol. 2014;32:634-640).
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Boston, MA—Biomarker development and validation are essential for the rational use of emerging cancer treatments, said presenters at the second Global Biomarkers Consortium annual conference.
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Boston, MA—Incorporating genomics into the practice of medicine requires the demonstration of the ability of biomarkers to impact clinical decision-making, and ensuring that patients receive the best therapy based on genomic findings. Scott A. Tomlins, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pathology and Urology, University of Michigan Medical School, Ann Arbor, reviewed efforts to realize genomic medicine into prostate cancer diagnosis and management at the second Global Biomarkers Consortium annual conference.
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Results of a study reported at the 2014 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium showed that at 1.5 years after the last injection of this therapy, minimal myelosuppression and minimal nonhematologic adverse events were reported, and there were no reports of cancers of concern, including acute myelogenous leukemia (AML), myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), and primary bone cancer
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San Francisco, CA—Longer-term follow-up of a large randomized phase 3 trial suggests that quality of life (QOL) is improved when patients with high-risk prostate cancer have a shorter versus longer course of androgen- deprivation therapy (ADT) plus radiotherapy as primary treatment. In this follow-up study, 18 months of ADT were found to improve QOL versus 36 months of ADT when added to radiotherapy.
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San Francisco, CA—Men with castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) had inferior time duration to prostate-specific antigen (PSA) progression and of progression-free survival (PFS) if they received the androgen receptor agonist enzalutamide (Xtandi) after the taxane docetaxel (Taxotere) rather than before, according to data from a retrospective study presented at the 2014 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.
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