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Featured Oncology News

FDA Advances Efficient Approaches to Designing and Conducting Cancer Clinical Trials

(FDA.gov/FDA Voice) Aug 14, 2018 - Over the past decade, advances in understanding of cancer biology have led to the development of targeted treatments that are more effective than the chemotherapies of the past century. These therapies are demonstrating response rates large in magnitude or response durations prolonged in early trials, or both. Patient demand to enter these trials has increased, and so have calls to expedite the drug development and approval processes, all while maintaining high standards for safety and efficacy. We never lose sight of our dedication to patients faced with a life-threatening disease and to making progress in the fight against cancer.

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When Insurance Wouldn't Pay, Parents Funded Cancer Patient's $95,000 Lifesaving Treatment

(CNN) Aug 15, 2018 - Kate Weissman sits at the edge of the patient table. Her oncologist goes over her medical records and says her most recent scans show no recurrence of cervical cancer. "I am remarkably happy," says Dr. Whitfield Growdon, a surgical oncologist who specializes in personalized care at Massachusetts General Hospital. Weissman perks up and claps her hands. "Two years," she says. "We made it two years."

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Should Coffee Come With Cancer Warnings? California Says No

(New York Times) Aug 15, 2018 - In every cup of coffee, there is a chemical linked to cancer. That undisputed fact led a Los Angeles judge to rule this spring that coffee companies must provide cancer warnings to coffee drinkers. The ruling cast a shadow on a daily and often essential rite for more than 100 million Americans. But now, the State of California has intervened, telling coffee drinkers not to worry. An agency has proposed a rule declaring that not only does coffee pose no significant risk of cancer, it may actually have health benefits.

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Oncology Clinical News

Medically Underserved Women In The Southeast Rarely Receive BRCA Tests

(VUMC Reporter) Aug 14, 2018 - Medically underserved women in the Southeast diagnosed with breast cancer or ovarian cancer missed out on genetic testing that could have helped them and their relatives make important decisions about their health, according to new research from Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center.

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Ovarian Cancer Genetics Unravelled

(Imperial College London [UK]) Aug 13, 2018 - All patients studied with high grade serous ovarian cancer showed more than one signature, suggesting that multiple mechanisms change ovarian cancer cells during the life of these cancers. This might explain why the disease is so hard to beat with therapies targeting just a single mechanism.

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Phase 1 Trial Results Suggest New Direction For Heavy-Smoking Head And Neck Cancer Patients

(UCCC/Colorado Cancer Blogs) Aug 14, 2018 - Patients with a greater than 10 pack/year history of smoking tend to develop an especially dangerous form of head and neck squamous cell cancer (HNSCC) for which prognosis remains poor and treatments have changed little during the past two decades. Recent phase 1 clinical trial results suggest a possible new direction for these patients.

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Research Identifies Potential Guidance for Gastric Cancer Treatment

(NFCR) Aug 14, 2018 - Researchers from Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center and Tianjin Medical University Cancer Institute and Hospital (TMUCIH) have discovered that gastric cancer tissue samples bearing mutation of a specific gene, MUC16, too are associated with higher tumor mutation loads.

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Urea Dysfunctions in the Liver May Signal Cancer

(Medical News Today) Aug 15, 2018 - The urea cycle is the main way that the human body disposes of nitrogen waste. New research suggests that disruptions in this process may be an early sign of cancer.

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Stress Hormone Is Key Factor In Failure Of Immune System To Prevent Leukemia

(University of Kent [UK]) Aug 14, 2018 - The human stress hormone cortisol has been identified by scientists at the University as a key factor when the immune system fails to prevent leukemia taking hold.

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Third Dosing Cohort to be Initiated in MAGE-A4 SPEAR T-cell Basket Study After Favorable Review of Safety from One Billion Cell Dose Cohort

(Morningstar) Aug 15, 2018 - Adaptimmune Therapeutics plc, a leader in T-cell therapy to treat cancer, today announced a favorable review of safety data from the second dose cohort of patients who received one billion transduced SPEAR T‑cells targeting MAGE-A4 in the ongoing basket study in nine solid tumor indications.

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Oncology Business and Policy News

Novocure and US Oncology Research Announce Collaboration on PANOVA-3 Trial for Patients with Advanced Pancreatic Cancer

(MarketWatch) Aug 15, 2018 - US Oncology Research will open 10 clinical trial sites, enrolling patients in Novocure’s PANOVA-3 trial to test the efficacy of Tumor Treating Fields combined with nab-paclitaxel and gemcitabine in patients with unresectable locally advanced pancreatic cancer.

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Five Predictions For AI And Real-World Data In Oncology

(Forbes) Aug 14, 2018 - As progress in oncology care is advancing faster than ever -- especially due to the work of artificial intelligence (AI) and real-world data for clinical decision making -- it can be difficult to distinguish what is hype and what will be realized in the near future.

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Trailblazing Researchers in Immunotherapy Selected to Receive America's Most Distinguished Prize in Medicine

(Albany Medical College) Aug 15, 2018 - Three visionary scientists whose work has led to a revolutionary new way to treat cancer and other diseases have been announced as the recipients of the 2018 Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research.

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RMA of New York and Mount Sinai Health System Launch Oncofertility Program

(Mount Sinai) Aug 14, 2018 - Empowers cancer patients by increasing awareness of and access to fertility preservation options.

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First Opinion: Dense Breast Tissue Can Complicate Mammograms. Women Need To Know If They Have It

(STAT) Aug 15, 2018 - Most women — and their doctors — tend to think of mammography as a one-scan-works-for-all test. I learned the hard way that it isn’t.

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Mundipharma Brings Its Cancer Supportive Care Expertise To Vietnam After Signing Agreement with Helsinn Group for ALOXI® (palonosetron HCl)

(Virginian-Pilot) Aug 15, 2018 - Mundipharma brings its cancer supportive care expertise to Vietnam after signing agreement with Helsinn Group for ALOXI® (palonosetron HCl).

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Broader Healthcare and Pharma News

Express Scripts Staking Out Million Dollar Gene Therapies

(Reuters) Aug 15, 2018 - Express Scripts Holding Co built a multi-billion enterprise pressuring drug companies to lower their prices for U.S. patients. Now it is quietly building a side business: getting paid to help drug companies dispense a new generation of high-priced drugs.

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CVS Launches Program Targeting Expensive New Drugs

(The Hill) Aug 14, 2018 - CVS Caremark will allow its clients to exclude coverage of drugs with extremely high launch prices under a new program the company said is aimed at pressuring manufacturers to lower drug costs.

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As Alzheimer’s Drug Developers Give Up On Today’s Patients, Where Is The Outrage?

(STAT) Aug 15, 2018 - Although the latest analysis of experimental Alzheimer’s drugs finds that literally zero are being tested in late-stage clinical trials to treat moderate to severe Alzheimer’s, no patient advocacy groups uttered a peep in protest.

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