A Cure in Sight for Ocular Melanoma With Danet Peterson

At the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago, Danet Peterson sat down with Oncology Data Advisor to talk about her work with A Cure in Sight, a nonprofit organization which seeks to support patients with ocular melanoma throughout the diagnosis, treatment, and survivorship journey.

This podcast episode was recorded live at the 2022 ASCO Annual Meeting in Chicago by Oncology Data Advisor and ConveyMed. 

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Exploring the Impact of Cemiplimab and Pembrolizumab in Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma With Shaheer Khan, DO

Oncology Data Advisor™ · Exploring the Impact of Cemiplimab and Pembrolizumab in Cutaneous Squamous Cell Carcinoma In honor of Melanoma Awareness Month, Oncology Data Advisor spoke with Dr. Shaheer Khan, an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Irving Medical Center. Dr. Khan shares the promising results of two recent trials of cemiplimab and pembrolizumab for cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma, explains future directions in the treatment of patients who are ineligib...

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The Groundbreaking Approval of Tebentafusp for Uveal Melanoma With Richard Carvajal, MD

Oncology Data Advisor™ · The Groundbreaking Approval of Tebentafusp for Uveal Melanoma With Richard Carvajal, MD Recently, the FDA granted approval to tebentafusp for the treatment of patients with human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-A*02:01–positive unresectable or metastatic uveal melanoma, marking the first agent to be approved for this rare ocular malignancy. In this interview, Dr. Richard Carvajal, Associate Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and edito...

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The Groundbreaking Approval of Tebentafusp for Uveal Melanoma With Richard Carvajal, MD

Richard Carvajal, MD.

Recently, the FDA granted approval to tebentafusp for the treatment of patients with human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-A*02:01–positive unresectable or metastatic uveal melanoma, marking the first agent to be approved for this rare ocular malignancy. In this interview, Dr. Richard Carvajal, Associate Professor of Medicine at Columbia University Irving Medical Center and editorial board member of Oncology Data Advisor, discusses the practice-changing significance of the approval of tebentafusp and delves further into future directions in the development of treatments for uveal melanoma.  

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Combination of Nivolumab and Relatlimab Approved for Unresectable or Metastatic Melanoma

The FDA has approved the combination of nivolumab and relatlimab-rmbw (Opdualag™, Bristol-Myers Squibb) for patients with unresectable or metastatic melanoma. OpdualagTM is a fixed-dose dual immunotherapy combination of nivolumab, a programmed cell death protein 1 (PD-1)–blocking antibody, and relatlimab, a first-in-class human lymphocyte–activation gene 3 (LAG-3)–blocking antibody, and is administered as a single intravenous (IV) infusion. "LAG-3 and PD-1 are distinct inhibitory immune checkpoi...

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FDA Approves Pembrolizumab for Adjuvant Treatment of Stage IIB or IIC Melanoma

The FDA has approved pembrolizumab (Keytruda®, Merck), a programmed death cell death protein 1 (PD-1)–blocking antibody, for the adjuvant treatment of adult and pediatric patients 12 years and older with stage IIB or IIC melanoma following complete resection. "Current standard of care for patients after resection of high-risk stage II melanoma is observation," wrote Jason Luke, MD, Director of the Cancer Immunotherapeutics Center in the Division of Hematology/Oncology at the University of Pittsb...

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Trunk and Extremity Melanoma Debate: Similar Outcomes for Mohs Micrographic Surgery Versus Wide Local Excision

Survival outcomes did not change significantly for patients with melanoma of the trunk or extremity when treated with Mohs micrographic surgery (MMS) compared with wide local excision, according to the results of a retrospective cohort study published recently in JAMA Dermatology. The retrospective cohort study was designed because previous studies indicated differences in overall survival outcomes for patients with head and neck cancers. However, this study indicates that those results do not a...

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Neoadjuvant Ipilimumab/Nivolumab for Locally Advanced/Oligometastatic Melanoma: Emilia Cocorocchio, MD

With high rates of metastasis and progression, locally advanced/oligometastatic melanoma is a challenging disease to treat. According to results of a trial recently presented at the European Medical Society for Oncology (ESMO) Virtual Congress, neoadjuvant ipilimumab/nivolumab is a safe and effective treatment for patients with this disease. In this interview with i3 Health, lead study author Emilia Cocorocchio, MD, discusses the benefits of neoadjuvant ipilimumab/nivolumab and shares advice for...

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Melanoma With Brain Metastases: Nivolumab/Ipilimumab Effective

Nivolumab/ipilimumab demonstrates efficacy in patients with melanoma and brain metastases, according to results of the primary analysis of the phase 3 NIBIT-M2 trial, presented at the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) Virtual Congress 2020. "Brain metastases represent a high unmet medical need, in which the therapeutic potential of immune-checkpoint(s) is being actively investigated," note the investigators in their presentation abstract, led by Anna Di Giacomo, MD, Associate Director ...

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Atezolizumab Triplet Therapy for BRAF V600-Mutant Melanoma: Paolo A. Ascierto, MD

Recently, the FDA approved a new indication for atezolizumab (Tecentriq®, Genentech) in combination with vemurafenib (Zelboraf®, Genentech and Daiichi-Sankyo) and cobimetinib (Cotellic®, Genentech) for the treatment of BRAF V600-mutant advanced melanoma. In this interview with i3 Health, Paolo A. Ascierto, MD, principal investigator of the IMspire150 trial, on which the approval was based, discusses the approval's significance and the most promising research developments in the treatment of BRAF...

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Encorafenib/Binimetinib for BRAF V600-Mutant Melanoma With Paolo Ascierto, MD

Combination BRAF/MEK inhibitors such as encorafenib/binimetinib are the current standard of care for patients with BRAF V600-mutant melanoma. Until now, however, the long-term efficacy of encorafenib/binimetinib had not been established. In an updated analysis of the phase 3 COLUMBUS trial, a team of researchers led by Paolo Ascierto, MD, Director of the Unit of Melanoma, Cancer Immunotherapy, and Innovative Therapy at the National Tumor Institute Fondazione G. Pascale in Naples, Italy, found th...

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Atezolizumab Combo Approved in BRAF V600-Mutant Melanoma

The FDA has approved a new indication for atezolizumab (Tecentriq®, Genentech) in combination with cobimetinib (Cotellic®, Genentech) and vemurafenib (Zelboraf®, Genentech and Daiichi-Sankyo) for the treatment of BRAF V600-mutated advanced melanoma. The approval was granted under a supplemental Biologics License Application (sBLA) with priority review. The approval was based on data from the double-blind, international phase 3 IMspire150 trial (NCT02908672), for which 514 patients with unresecta...

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Delivering Immunotherapeutics Intratumorally: Safe for Treating Cancer?

Intravenous administration of chemotherapy is the conventional method of delivery. However, several issues arise with this method, including insufficient drug penetration into the tumor tissue. Intratumoral injections of immunotherapies directly into the tumor have been a possible solution to this problem, and, according to a recent study, results of which are published in JAMA Network Open, this technique has been found to be a viable option for a variety of histological conditions and target o...

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Advanced Melanoma: Pembrolizumab Effective Regardless of BRAF V600E/K Mutations

In patients with advanced melanoma, pembrolizumab achieves efficacy regardless of BRAF V600E/K mutation status or prior treatment with BRAF and/or MEK inhibitors, according to the results of a new pooled analysis published in JAMA Oncology. Approximately 40% of metastatic melanomas harbor a BRAF mutation, 90% of which are an activating BRAF V600E/K mutation. While targeted agents and immune checkpoint inhibitors, including pembrolizumab, have considerably improved outcomes for patients with adva...

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New Dosing Guidelines for Pembrolizumab FDA Approved

The FDA recently approved new dosing guidelines of 400 mg of pembrolizumab (KEYTRUDA®, Merck) to be taken every six weeks. The current recommended dose of pembrolizumab is 200 mg every three weeks. This new dosing regimen is approved across all adult indications of pembrolizumab. Pembrolizumab is FDA approved to treat several cancers including melanoma, non-small cell lung cancer, small cell lung cancer, head and neck squamous cell cancer, classical Hodgkin lymphoma, primary mediastinal large B-...

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Cancer Vaccine Attacks Multiple Targets for Better Results

In a strategy that may prevent tumors from eluding the immune system's attack, researchers have developed a new cancer vaccine capable of targeting multiple members of a cancer-causing family of proteins at once. Because proteins in the melanoma-associated antigen (MAGE-A) family are highly tumor specific and are overexpressed in several types of cancer, they have become a focus of recent immunotherapy research efforts. Yet melanoma and lung carcinoma investigations of MAGE-A3, a MAGE-A isoform ...

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Experimental Cancer Vaccine Combination Is Effective Against Melanoma

Researchers have identified and optimized a synthetic chemical adjuvant that enhances an experimental cancer vaccine, enabling it to treat aggressive melanoma and immunize against its recurrence. For cancer immunotherapy to succeed, it must cause tumor antigen-specific cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) to activate, augmenting the body's own cancer-fighting ability. An adjuvant can strengthen this adaptive immune response, enhancing the body's attack on cancer antigens. Diprovocim, the adjuvant...

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Melanoma: Accurate Diagnosis From Visual Inspection?

Although melanoma is rare, it has one of the most rapidly rising incidence rates of any cancer, and it causes the majority of skin cancer deaths. Prompt and accurate diagnosis is crucial: if surgical excision is delayed, metastasis can result. On the other hand, a false diagnosis can lead to unnecessary tests and surgeries. In conjunction with taking a patient's history, a clinician's visual inspection of a suspicious lesion is usually the first assessment used in the diagnosis of skin cancer, a...

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New Protein Mimics Interleukin 2 Sans Side Effects

Researchers have used a computer program to design a protein that mimics the action of interleukin 2 (IL-2) and interleukin 15 (IL-15) without the toxic side effects. Interleukin 2 (IL-2), a cytokine that regulates the activities of the immune system's white blood cells, is a powerful anti-cancer drug used to treat metastatic melanoma and renal cell carcinoma. However, its toxic side effects, such as impairment of kidney function, have limited its use as a cancer-fighting agent. "People have tri...

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Oncolytic Herpes Virus Injection for Advanced Melanoma

A recent study has confirmed that talimogene laherparepvec (TVEC) (Imlygic®, Amgen, Inc.), an FDA-approved intralesional injection of an oncolytic herpes virus, is an effective treatment for patients with unresectable stage IIIB-IV melanoma. "Our findings in the real world mimic what the clinical trials have found," commented David W. Ollila, MD, General Surgical Oncologist at the University of North Carolina (UNC) Linebacker Comprehensive Cancer Center and corresponding author of the study, whi...

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