publication date: Mar. 13, 2015
20150313 - Mar. 13, 2015
ISSUE 10 – MARCH 13, 2015PDF

Cancer Centers Join to Accelerate Trials, Industry Collaborations, Drug Development

Six NCI-designated cancer centers have agreed to pool data from their electronic medical record systems and cancer registries to accelerate discovery of targets and the development of biomarkers.

Launched in May 2014, the Oncology Research Information Exchange Network, or ORIEN, was founded by Moffitt Cancer Center and The Ohio State Comprehensive Cancer Center (The Cancer Letter, May 30, 2014).

Recently, ORIEN added four cancer centers: City of Hope, University of Virginia Cancer Center, University of Colorado Cancer Center, and the University of New Mexico Cancer Center  (The Cancer Letter, Feb. 27).

Conversation with The Cancer Letter

Dalton: I Don’t Know Another Place like ORIEN

The Oncology Research Information Exchange Network, a partnership of academic cancer centers, has collected data from over 120,000 patients, and recently added four institutions.

“I don’t know of another place that actually follows patients and has the patients donate all their clinical data throughout their lifetime, and tissue to be studied, and allows them the right of contacting the patient,” said Bill Dalton, CEO of M2Gen, founding director of the Moffitt Cancer Center Personalized Medicine Institute, and one of the founders of ORIEN.

U.S. Prescription Drug Spending Increased 13 Percent in 2014

New hepatitis C therapies with high price tags and the exploitation of loopholes for compounded medications contributed to a 13.1 percent increase in U.S. drug spending in 2014, a rate not seen in more than a decade, according to the 2014 Express Scripts Drug Trend Report.

Hepatitis C and compounded medications are responsible for more than half of the increase in overall spending. Excluding those two therapy classes, 2014 drug trend (the year-over-year increase in per capita drug spending) was 6.4 percent.

In Brief

  • Nancy Davidson chosen as president-elect of the American Association for Cancer Research

  • Geoffrey Kim named director of FDA’s Division of Hematology Oncology Products 1

  • Sagar Lonial and Charles Stately join senior leadership of Winship Cancer Institute

  • Kevin Behrns named co-editor-and-chief of Surgery

  • Inderbir Gill appointed chair of global initiatives for the American Urological Association

  • University of Virginia and Novant Health to form Northern Virginia regional health system

  • World Molecular Imaging Society and NCI to collaborate on best practices for co-clinical trials

  • Varian Medical Systems chosen to equip two proton therapy centers in England

  • Cancer researchers launch mobile app to track breast cancer symptoms

Drugs and Targets

  • FDA approves Unituxin for neuroblastoma

  • Fast Track Designation granted to HS-410 in bladder cancer

  • Reolysin granted third orphan drug designation

  • Leukemia and Lymphoma Society published a study on capping cost-sharing for prescription drugs

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