In the October issue, we published an article about the results of a meta-analysis reported at ASCO 2012 that supported the new guidelines that recommend weight-based chemotherapy dosing for obese cancer patients.
Oncology experts from all over the globe arrived in Vienna, Austria, to attend the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2012 Congress. Attendance broke all records, with 16,394 delegates, many of them from outside of Europe: 1116 from the United States, 539 from Japan, 479 from China, 292 from Argentina, and 258 from Brazil. Following are some highlights from the Presidential Symposia and papers proffered at the meeting.
Joseph C. Alvarnas, MD, discussed new drugs that might improve outcomes for relapsed/refractory acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) at the National Comprehensive Cancer Network 7th Annual Congress on Hematologic Malignancies.1 Alvarnas is director of medical quality and clinical associate professor at City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center in Duarte, California.
The management of relapsed/refractory acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a vexing problem and requires extensive, aggressive supportive care throughout the course of therapy, explained Joseph C. Alvarnas, MD, City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center, Duarte, California, in a presentation at the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) 7th Annual Congress on Hematologic Malignancies.1
Neuroendocrine tumors are highly vascular, expressing vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and demonstrating angiogenesis. Since the mTOR inhibitor everolimus has antiangiogenic activity, RADIANT-3 investigators evaluated several VEGF pathway tumor markers for their prognostic and predictive potential. The results were presented by James C. Yao, MD, in an abstract presentation at ESMO.1
Interest in pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors (pNETs) has grown since the recent approval of targeted agents for advanced disease, as was evident by the attendance at several sessions during the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2012 Congress in Vienna, Austria.1
Doxepin, a tricyclic antidepressant approved for the treatment of depression and anxiety, as well as moderate pruritus, significantly improved oral mucositis pain in patients treated with radiation therapy for head and neck cancer in a phase 3 trial.1 In the study, doxepin was combined with water and used as an oral rinse.
Sildenafil is often used by men treated with radiation or radical prostatectomy for prostate cancer to achieve an erection sufficient for sexual intercourse, and it is effective to varying degrees when used on an as-needed basis. A randomized controlled trial has found that prophylactic daily use of sildenafil improved overall sexual function, as well as domains of sexual function, in prostate cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy.1 This is the first time a phase 3 study has demonstrated the effectiveness of prophylactic sildenafil in the setting of radiation.
If the abstracts presented at ESMO were any indication, the US Food and Drug Administration approval of crizotinib only opened the door to a virtual roomful of next-generation ALK inhibitors. While crizotinib targets only the 5% of non–small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients with the ALK genetic translocation, it makes a huge impact on this subset, doubling the time that patients with advanced disease spend in remission.
Onco360 is an oncology pharmaceutical services company dedicated to advancing the continuum of pharmaceutical cancer care for patients. To that end, the company has developed specialized clinical and supportive care oncology pharmacy care programs and services that are managed by board-certified oncology pharmacists (BCOPs) with the goal of providing quality services and improving outcomes for patients.