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TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7

TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7 published on October 20, 2011 in Cancer Center Profile

Offering medical, surgical, and radiation oncology, the Hallmark Health Hematology and Oncology Center provides local access to personalized, comprehensive, high-quality cancer care. Located in Stoneham, Massachusetts, about 7 miles north of Boston, the center is part of Hallmark Health System, which also includes 2 community hospitals, Lawrence Memorial Hospital of Medford and Melrose-Wakefield Hospital.

WASHINGTON, DC—Genetic differences among African-American and white men seem to be root causes of the prostate cancer disparities between the 2 groups, according to new data. Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer among men in the United States, with occurrences and mortality rates higher in African- American men compared with white men. Studies show that prostate cancer is a disease conferred by multiple gene mutations, numerous alterations in gene expression, and changes in genome composition.

TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7 published on October 20, 2011 in In the News

Prostate-specific antigen (PSA)-based screening has not been shown to reduce prostate cancer–specific mortality, but is associated with harms related to subsequent evaluation and treatments, some of which may be unnecessary, according to a new analysis of the evidence by the US Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) published online in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7 published on October 20, 2011 in In the News

For women with advanced breast cancer resistant to hormonal therapy, combining everolimus and exemestane improves progression-free survival (PFS) by nearly 7 months compared with exemestane alone, according to phase 3 trial results reported at the European Multi - disciplinary Cancer Conference. The Breast Cancer Trials of Oral Everolimus (BOLERO) randomized 724 patients in 24 countries who had been treated previously with letrozole or anastrozole. Previous therapy also included tamoxifen, fulvestrant, and chemotherapy.

TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7 published on October 20, 2011 in In the News

The antibody-guided drug conjugate trastuzumab emtansine (T-DM1) as initial therapy prolonged progression-free survival (PFS) for patients with HER2+ metastatic breast cancer compared with docetaxel plus trastuzumab, according to trial results reported at the European Multidisciplinary Cancer Conference.

The conjugate delivers trastuzumab directly to tumor cells by attaching the drug to DM1 using a stable linker. This limits the drug’s exposure to normal cells, thus producing fewer side effects than the drug delivers through traditional means.

TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7 published on October 20, 2011 in In the News

Upfront zoledronic acid significantly and progressively increases bone mineral density (BMD) in postmenopausal women with early breast cancer receiving letrozole for 5 years, according to results of the Zoledronic Acid–Letrozole Adjuvant Synergy Trial (Z-FAST).

TOP - October 2011 Vol 4, No 7 published on October 20, 2011 in In the News

ADT Did Not Increase Cardiovascular Mortality Adding androgen-deprivation therapy (ADT) to radiation in men with clinically localized prostate cancer was not associated with increased cardiovascular mortality compared with radiation therapy alone, according to results of a multivariate analysis presented at the annual meeting of the American Society for Radiation Oncology.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved denosumab (Prolia, Amgen) to increase bone mass in patients at high risk for fracture receiving androgen- deprivation therapy for nonmetastatic prostate cancer or adjuvant aromatase inhibitor therapy for breast cancer. This monoclonal antibody that binds to RANKL was approved based on results of 2 randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials. One trial randomized 1468 men with prostate cancer.

The FDA has granted 510k marketing clearance to an invitro diagnostic assay (NADiA ProsVue, Iris International) for determining rate of change of serum total prostate-specific antigen over a period of time. A slope of 3 assays is indicated for use as a prognostic marker in conjunction with clinical evaluation to aid in identifying those patients at reduced risk for recurrence of prostate cancer for the 8-year period following prostatectomy.

The FDA issued a statement warning physicians of changes in the package insert for bevacizumab (Avastin, Genentech) regarding newly identified risks.

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