TOP - July 2020, Vol 13, No 4

The combination of the checkpoint inhibitor durvalumab (Imfinzi), the poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitor olaparib (Lynparza), and chemotherapy with paclitaxel used as neoadjuvant therapy improved the pathologic complete response (pCR) of patients with high-risk HER2-negative stage II or III breast cancer compared with the physician’s choice of chemotherapy.
A bispecific chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T-cell product directed against CD19 and CD22 antigens induced a complete response (CR) in 5 of 12 (42%) evaluable children and young adults with relapsed or refractory acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL).
Data from the TRACERx lung study suggest that circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) may be a biomarker for the detection of postsurgical minimal residual disease (MRD) in patients with non–small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), suggesting which patients are at increased risk for disease relapse and will require more aggressive adjuvant therapy.
The addition of the checkpoint inhibitor atezolizumab (Tecentriq) to the 2 targeted therapies—the BRAF inhibitor vemurafenib (Zelboraf) and the MEK inhibitor cobimetinib (Cotellic)—improved progression-free survival (PFS) and the duration of responses compared with the 2 targeted therapies plus placebo in patients with newly diagnosed advanced melanoma and BRAF V600E/K mutation, according to the phase 3 IMspire150 clinical trial.
Tumors with KRAS mutation are notoriously difficult to treat. Early data presented at the 2020 American Association for Cancer Research virtual annual meeting suggest 2 new routes for the treatment of cancers with KRAS mutation, including (1) the combination of a RAF/MEK inhibitor and an FAK inhibitor, and (2) the use of onvansertib, an investigational competitive inhibitor of the PLK1 enzyme, together with chemotherapy.
Two studies presented at the 2020 American Association for Cancer Research virtual annual meeting confirm the value of different liquid biopsies in the early detection of different types of cancer.
To address the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on oncology delivery systems and the management of patients, the Association for Value-Based Cancer Care (AVBCC) has held numerous webcasts as part of its series titled COVID-19 Impact on Cancer Care and Road to Recovery.
A biosimilar is a “highly similar” copy of a biologic drug, but it is not a generic. This definition understandably causes confusion among patients and providers alike, but it is an important distinction, according to Jim Koeller, MS, FHOPA, Professor, Pharmacotherapy, The University of Texas at Austin.
For most patients with early-stage testicular germ cell tumors, surgery is curative and mitigates the risk for long-term toxicities associated with chemotherapy and radiation, according to results presented by Clint Cary, MD, MPH, Associate Professor, Department of Urology, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, at the 2020 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium.
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