Furthering Clinical Trials and Improving Outcomes for Patients With Lung Cancer: Ross Camidge, MD, PhD

The outcomes of patients with lung cancer have improved significantly in recent years, largely due to the treatment targeting the cancer's specific genetic profile and the impact of immunotherapy, often in different groups of patients. In this interview, Ross Camidge, MD, PhD, Director of Thoracic Oncology at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, discusses the importance of considering multiple factors when deciding on clinical trials for patients. Oncology Data Advisor: When would you recom...
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Utilizing Biomarker Testing to Improve Lung Cancer Survival: Beth Sandy, MSN, CRNP

The survival rate for lung cancer has improved significantly in recent years, largely due to the adoption of biomarker testing and the development of targeted therapies. In this interview in honor of Lung Cancer Awareness Month, Beth Sandy, MSN, CRNP, Outpatient Thoracic Oncology Nurse Practitioner at the University of Pennsylvania Abramson Cancer Center, discusses the importance of utilizing biomarker testing in order to determine treatment options for patients with lung cancer. Oncology Data A...
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Lung Cancer Screening Adherence After Baseline Screening Is Lower Than Reported

Patients who undergo baseline lung cancer screening are less likely to adhere to screening recommendations compared with the screening rates of patients who participate in randomized clinical trials, according to a meta-analysis now published in JAMA Network Open. Undergoing regular cancer screening has been shown to reduce the risk of cancer mortality. Data from the 2018 National Health Interview Survey found that approximately 70% of eligible women underwent breast cancer screening within the ...
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Brigatinib More Effective Than Crizotinib in ALK-Positive Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

A second interim analysis of the phase 3 ALTA-1L trial shows that brigatinib demonstrates superior results in patients with advanced ALK inhibitor-naive ALK-positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) compared with crizotinib. Crizotinib is not the most effective therapy for patients with ALK-positive NSCLC, as disease progression occurs frequently in the central nervous system, possibly due to poor drug penetration. In previous phase 1/2 trials, brigatinib, a next-generation ALK inhibitor with ...
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Capmatinib Approved: Metastatic Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer

The FDA has granted accelerated approval to capmatinib (TabrectaTM, Novartis) for adults with metastatic non­-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with mutations that lead to mesenchymal-epithelial transition (MET) exon 14 skipping. In addition, the FDA approved the FoundationOne® CDx (F1CDx) assay (Foundation Medicine, Inc.) as a companion diagnostic. Approval was based on the phase 2 GEOMETRY mono-1 trial (NCT02414139), a multicenter, nonrandomized trial evaluating capmatinib in patients with MET ex...
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Lung Cancer Screening Program Websites: Faulty Advertising?

Although lung cancer screening can help to save lives, it is not without significant risks. Patients need to be given information about both benefits and risks so that they can make an informed decision regarding whether to undergo screening. However, an analysis of screening program websites has now shown that many provide a biased, overly positive perspective of screening rather than a well-balanced portrayal of risks and benefits. The National Lung Screening Trial found that screening with lo...
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Pembro/Pemetrexed-Platinum: How Does It Affect Patient QOL?

In patients with previously untreated, metastatic, non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), pembrolizumab plus pemetrexed-platinum has proven to be an effective treatment compared with pemetrexed-platinum alone in increasing the proportion of patients who experience a complete or partial response, as shown in the KEYNOTE-189 study. Based on the results of this study, the FDA recently approved a new indication for pemetrexed in this combination for the first-line treatment ...
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The Deadly Consequences of Fine Particle Air Pollution

A new study finds an association between fine particulate matter (PM2.5) air pollution and deaths from nine different causes, including cardiovascular disease, cerebrovascular disease, hypertension, dementia, and lung cancer, among others. Furthermore, 99% of PM2.5-associated deaths were linked to levels of PM2.5 exposure currently deemed acceptable by US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recommendations. Atmospheric particulate matter with a diameter of less than 2.5 micrometers, PM2.5, is ...
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Racial, Age-Related Disparities in Lung Cancer Treatment

A new study reports that only 62.1% of US patients with lung cancer receive treatment that adheres to guidelines, and elderly and non-Hispanic black patients are disproportionately represented among those whose cancer is undertreated. For the study, now published in Annals of the American Thoracic Society, the researchers evaluated whether 441,812 lung cancer cases in the US National Cancer Database diagnosed between 2010 and 2014 received treatment that adhered to the National Comprehensive Can...
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Yogurt and Fiber Intake May Reduce Lung Cancer Risk

Researchers have discovered that consuming more dietary fiber and yogurt decreases an individual's chance of developing lung cancer. Yogurt, a probiotic food, and dietary fiber, a huge source of prebiotics, offer many health benefits by modulating the gut microbiota and metabolic pathways. "Our findings have no immediate clinical impacts on [patients with] lung cancer, but do have a major public health impact on lung cancer prevention," stated lead researcher, Xiao-Ou Shu, MD, PhD, Professor of ...
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Tumor Treating Fields Plus Chemo Effective for Mesothelioma

By delivering low-intensity alternating electric fields, Tumor Treating Fields (TTFields), a regional, antimitotic therapy, has been deemed effective in treating solid tumors. Researchers set out to discover if TTFields would be successful in combination with systemic chemotherapy for treatment-naive patients with unresectable malignant pleural mesothelioma. For this phase 2 study, published in The Lancet Oncology, the investigators enrolled 80 patients from 12 European academic and non-academic...
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Finding Solutions in Advanced NSCLC Without Driver Mutations: Jamie E. Chaft, MD

​Many patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) present with advanced disease, which is highly resistant to chemotherapy. Recently, the use of tumor histology and relevant molecular biomarkers in determining optimal treatment strategies has improved outcomes for some patients, yet a number of targeted therapies are not applicable to patients without driver mutations. In this interview with i3 Health, Jamie E. Chaft, MD, a medical oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and an...
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Metabolomic Biomarkers Predict Lung Cancer Type, Survival

Investigators are utilizing magnetic resonance spectroscopy to identify metabolomic biomarkers that can predict type, stage, and survival in patients with early-stage lung cancer. Due to lack of early screening methods, lung cancer is commonly not diagnosed until the later stages, resulting in a mortality rate of over 70%. Low-dose spiral computed tomography (LDCT) can detect small lung nodules but is not considered an effective screening tool due to its high cost and radiation hazards. The rese...
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Findings Confirmed: CT Screening Reduces Lung Cancer Deaths

​The extended follow-up of the National Lung Screening Trial (NLST) confirms the study's previous finding: low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) scans reduce mortality from lung cancer to a greater extent than do chest radiographs. The NLST randomly assigned 53,452 high-risk current and former smokers at 33 medical institutions in the United States to receive three annual screenings, done using either LDCT or chest radiographs. Results reported in 2011 after a median of 6.5 years of follow-up demo...
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Increasing Eligibility for Lung Cancer Screening With Ping Yang, MD, PhD

​Screening is essential to reducing deaths from lung cancer, a condition which, due to high rates of late-stage diagnosis, is the leading cause of cancer-related mortality worldwide. The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends low-dose computed tomography (LDCT) screening for individuals aged 55 to 80 who either currently smoke or have quit within the past 15 years and have a history of 30 or more pack years, a pack year being the number of packs smoked per day multipl...
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The Need to Expand Lung Cancer Screening Criteria

Since lung cancer is the leading cause of cancer-related death worldwide because most patients are diagnosed when they already have advanced disease, effective screening is of the utmost importance. The United States Preventative Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends screening for all individuals aged 55 to 80 with a smoking history of 30 or more pack years—a pack year being the number of packs smoked per day multiplied by the number of years a person has smoked—who either currently smoke or h...
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Advanced NSCLC: Pembrolizumab Increases Five-Year Survival

​The phase I KEYNOTE-001 study reports that in patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), pembrolizumab (Keytruda®, Merck) increases five-year overall survival. "For patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), median overall survival… and five-year survival rates have historically been poor," Edward B. Garon, MD, MS, Health Sciences Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and colleagues comment in their publication in th...
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New Biomarkers Could Help Prevent Lung Cancer

Lung cancer is the deadliest of all cancers; every year, 160,000 people die from it in the United States alone. Bronchial premalignant lesions (PMLs), precursors of lung squamous cell carcinoma, could contain biomarkers crucial to the prediction of this disease. Until recently, scientists lacked the knowledge to identify and treat distinct molecular types of PMLs. Now, researchers have identified four molecular subtypes of PMLs. These subtypes could pave the way to preventative therapies for ind...
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Raising Awareness of Lung Cancer Screening Through Social Media: An Interview With Aimee Strong, MSN, AGACNP-BC

​Lung cancer screening using low-dose computed tomography (CT) has been endorsed by the United States Preventive Services Task Force and is covered by most insurances, yet this service is still underutilized, and some individuals at high risk for lung cancer may not know that it exists. Aimee Strong, MSN, AGACNP-BC, investigated whether social media could be used to educate high-risk individuals about lung cancer screening and motivate them to discuss screening with their health care providers. ...
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Not Just Humankind’s Best Friend: Dogs Can Sniff Out Cancer

With 300 million olfactory receptors in their noses—50 times more than humans—dogs can smell scents that humans cannot even perceive. Researchers now report that this sniffing capability allows dogs to distinguish between blood samples of patients with cancer and blood samples of healthy individuals. For the study, presented at the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology: Experimental Biology Meeting 2019, four 2-year-old beagle dogs were trained by operant conditioning to use th...
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