Getting a Jump on Ovarian Cancer

In July 2013, Ivanna Vidal learned she carried a mutation in one of her genes, the BRCA2 gene, that increases the risk of breast and ovarian cancers. About a year later, she was found to have a mass in her right ovary just months after an ovarian cancer screening came back negative.

Last month, during what she thought would be a preventative surgery to remove her ovaries, fallopian tubes and uterus, the mass in her ovary was biopsied. Doctors diagnosed her with advanced-stage ovarian cancer. (more…)

Merck Immunotherapy Drug Shows Promise in Bladder Cancer

(Reuters) – Merck & Co’s new immune system drug Keytruda has produced encouraging results in early tests against bladder cancer, according to a company-sponsored study, prompting the firm to prepare a clinical trial later this year.

Keytruda is the first in a new wave of immune-boosting medicines to be approved for treating melanomas in the United States, but it also has potential in a range of other cancers. (more…)

Scientists Detect Early Sign of Pancreatic Cancer

Researchers say they’ve identified a sign of early development of pancreatic cancer, a leading cause of cancer death. And, they add, their discovery might lead one day to a new test to detect the disease in its initial and more treatable stages.

The early sign is an increase in levels of certain amino acids, and this occurs before patients develop symptoms and the disease is typically diagnosed.

The finding came from analyses of blood samples from 1,500 people taking part in large health-tracking studies. (more…)

Phase III Trial Data Suggest Potential New Treatment Strategies for Prostate Cancer

In the last few years we witnessed the approval of several new agents for metastatic prostate cancer that have resulted in improved overall survival (OS)

Currently, androgen deprivation therapy (ADT) remains a central part of treatment for patients with high-risk non-metastatic and also metastatic prostate cancer. Despite the generally good response of metastatic disease to this approach, many men will eventually develop castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC), for which prognosis is still poor. Data from randomised phase III trials presented at yesterday’s Proffered Paper Session on GU, Prostate, have shown a significant OS benefit in patients with ‘high-volume’ metastatic prostate cancer receiving combined antiandrogen and docetaxel as first-line treatment and have suggested a benefit of adding local radiotherapy to androgen deprivation in newly diagnosed high-risk non-metastatic (M0) prostate cancer. (more…)

In War on Cancer, Patients At Risk of Becoming Commoditized

Over the past 40 years, the global medical community has made significant strides in the war against cancer. More Americans with cancer face longer life expectancies as a result of increased awareness among at-risk populations, better preventative care, early screenings, and new therapies. Furthermore, when patients have access to quality cancer care the odds of survival are significantly increased. According to a report released recently by the American Association of Cancer Research, today Americans have more chances of survival and better quality of life after a cancer diagnosis than ever before.  (more…)

Roche Breast Cancer Drug Perjeta Appears to Greatly Extend Patients’ Lives

A drug used to treat advanced breast cancer has had what appears to be unprecedented success in prolonging lives in a clinical trial, researchers reported on Sunday.

Patients who received the drug — Perjeta, from the Swiss drug maker Roche — had a median survival time nearly 16 months longer than those in the control group.

That is the longest amount of time for a drug used as an initial treatment for metastatic breast cancer, the researchers said, and it may be one of the longest for the treatment of any cancer. (more…)

Pfizer Proven Miracle To Fight Against ROS1 Lung Cancer Through Xalkori

In annual congress of European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) in Madrid the researchers presented the study describing Xalkori as a wonder drug. The drug Xalkori manufactured by Pfizer Incorporation is new in the market and is made to treat a rare type of lung cancer- the non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). A clinical trial has shown surprising effects of Xalkori in reducing the size of this tumour and can be an effective treatment for people suffering from this uncommon form of illness related to gene defect. (more…)

Cancer Drugs Fund ‘Undermines NHS Rule that All Patients Equal’

The Government fund that pays for life-extending drugs for terminally ill cancer patients “undermines” the NHS principle that all patients are equal, and gives a “perverse incentive” to drug companies to keep their prices high, a healthcare finance expert has claimed.

John Appleby, chief economist at the influential King’s Fund think tank, said that using the fund to pay for drugs already rejected for NHS use on cost grounds raised “a fundamental ethical dilemma”. (more…)

Male Breast Cancer

Men don’t have breasts. How can they get breast cancer?

Even though men do not have breasts like women, they do have a small amount of breast tissue. In fact, the “breasts” of an adult man are similar to the breasts of a girl before puberty, and consist of a few ducts surrounded by fat and other tissue. In girls, this tissue grows and develops in response to female hormones, but in men — who do not secrete the same amounts of these hormones — this tissue does not develop. (more…)

Moffitt Role in Cancer Study Helps Patient Beat Melanoma

Tampa, FL — Doctors may have found a cure for one of the deadliest forms of cancer, and Moffitt Cancer Center is behind a new drug that’s saving lives.

Patrick Wilkins was treated by doctors in part of successful study that uncovered a breakthrough in medicine. Wilkins is described as a loving husband and proud father who loves the outdoors, but in 2009 doctors found cancer in one of his lungs. After several treatments he underwent a successful surgery to remove the disease, and he and his family were relieved once it was gone. “It’s a great feeling,” said Wilkins. (more…)