Issue 27 - Jul 2, 2020
  • Conversation with The Cancer Letter

    Northwell Health reopens cancer services after COVID-19 deluge

    New York health system explores NCI designation in affiliation with Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory

    Any way you look at it, Northwell Health, New York’s largest health system, took a massive hit from COVID-19.

    Northwell has treated over 50,000 COVID patients, admitting over 15,000 of them to its hospitals—more than any such system in the U.S.

  • NCI BSA approves nine new and reissue concepts

    The NCI Board of Scientific Advisors has approved nine new and reissue concepts—Request for Applications, Cooperative Agreement, Request for Proposals, and Program Announcements with special receipt, referral and review.

  • In Brief

    • Yale Cancer Center receives $2.8M NCI cancer systems immunology grant
    • USC Norris receives $5 million for cancer drug discoveries
    • Alexander Drilon named chief of the Early Drug Development Service at MSK
    • Nancy R. Daly named CEO of Conquer Cancer, the American Society of Clinical Oncology Foundation
    • ASCO’s Association for Clinical Oncology establishes PAC
    • Florida Cancer Specialists & Research Institute breaks ground for new location
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  • Trials & Tribulations

    (Social + geographic) distance = Ongoing challenges in disparities for rural cancer patients

    Approximately two-thirds of the NCI Community Oncology Research Programs, serve states in which the rural population exceeds 30%. 

  • Clinical Roundup

    • NCCN Guidelines for patients can help patients recognize side-effects of immunotherapy
  • Drugs & Targets

    • Phesgo receives FDA approval in breast cancer indication for at home treatment
    • Keytruda receives FDA approval as first-line immunotherapy for MSI-H/dMMR MCC
    • Bavencio receives FDA approval for urothelial carcinoma maintenance treatment
    • Reblozyl approved by European Commission for transfusion-dependent anemia in adults with MDS or beta thalassemia
    • Guardant Health launches real-world clinical-genomic platform to accelerate precision oncology drug development
  • NCI Trials

    NCI Trials for July 2020

    The National Cancer Institute approved the following clinical research studies last month. 

    For further information, contact the principal investigator listed.

Issue 26 - Jun 26, 2020
  • Participation by minority racial, ethnic groups in NCI-funded trials nearly doubles in 20 years

    The proportion of racial and ethnic minority patients in NCI-funded clinical trials has nearly doubled over two decades—from 14% in 1999 to 25% in 2019, according to data from NCI’s National Clinical Trials Network and the NCI Community Oncology Research Program.

  • The Cancer Letter’s paywall is returning

    When the COVID-19 crisis began, The Cancer Letter made the decision to take down our paywall, and provide coverage of the pandemic free of charge “until this crisis is resolved” (The Cancer LetterApril 3, 2020).

  • AACR session on disparities points to the new consensus: Being woke is not enough

    The name of the session was a message in and of itself: “Racism and Racial Inequalities in Cancer Research.”

  • NCI seeks applications to build research capacity for COVID-19 serology and immunology

    NCI has issued two Requests for Applications and a Request for Proposals focused on COVID-19 serology and immunology.

  • Collins: It’s unknown whether COVID-19 antibody-positive test means protection against reinfection

    In March, as SARS-CoV-2 spread rapidly across the United States, cancer researchers scrambled to find clues about the virus and ways to mitigate its damage.

  • Guest Editorial

    To expedite progress against COVID-19, a public-private “accelerator” taps into real-world data

    Real-world data is everywhere. During the COVID-19 global pandemic, we are literally generating, and collecting, real-world data every single day—from electronic health records, insurance claims, patient registries, and a myriad of other sources. But the question remains: how do we use this data to better understand, prevent, and treat this disease?

  • In Brief

    • Kids v Cancer urges Congress to permanently reauthorize pediatric voucher program
    • UAMS Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute joins Kiyatec clinical study
  • AACR Briefs

    • David A. Tuveson elected AACR president-elect for 2020-2021
    • James R. Downing receives inaugural AACR-St. Baldrick’s Foundation award for pediatric cancer research
    • TCGA founding members and project team receive AACR 2020 Team Science Awards
    • Jedd D. Wolchok receives AACR-Joseph H. Burchenal Award for clinical cancer research
    • Cigall Kadoch receives AACR Award for basic cancer research
    • Lisa A. Newman receives AACR-Minorities in Cancer Research Jane Cooke Wright Lectureship
    • Patricia S. Steeg receives 2020 AACR-Women in Cancer Research Charlotte Friend Lectureship
    • Benjamin F. Cravatt receives 2020 AACR Award for chemistry in cancer research
    • Christopher I. Amos receives 2020 AACR-American Cancer Society Award for research in cancer epidemiology and prevention
    • Michael Karin receives 2020 AACR-G.H.A. Clowes Award for basic cancer research
    • Michelle M. Le Beau receives AACR-Margaret Foti Award for leadership and achievements in cancer research
    • Barbara J. Wold receives AACR-Irving Weinstein Foundation lectureship
    • Luis A. Diaz receives AACR-Waun Ki Hong Award
    • Tyler Jacks receives AACR Princess Takamatsu Memorial Lectureship
    • Phillip A. Sharp receives award for lifetime achievement in cancer research
    • Herbst, Lowy, Majima, Spears, receive AACR distinguished public service award
    • AACR names fellows of the AACR Academy class of 2020
    • Charles L. Sawyers named AACR Academy president-elect
    • Steven A. Rosenberg receives AACR-CRI Lloyd J. Old Award in cancer immunology
    • John E. Dick receives 2020 Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award for Extraordinary Achievement in Cancer Research
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  • Clinical Roundup

    • FDA pilot program to communicate patient reported outcomes from cancer clinical trials
    • Black cancer patients better represented in publicly-funded clinical trials
    • AI dual-stain approach improved accuracy, efficiency of cervical cancer screening in NCI study
    • IPATential150 study meets rPFS primary endpoint in mCRPC
    • City of Hope, TGen study shows T cells can predict how patients respond to immunotherapy
    • Liquid biopsies using urine and plasma help detect NSCLC
    • Online program significantly improves insomnia in adolescent and young adult cancer survivors
    • Study: LifeTracDx blood test shows positive results in detection of early stage cancer in solid tumors
  • Drugs & Targets

    • FDA approves Keytruda for cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma
    • Selinexor receives FDA approval for relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma
    • Oral relugolix NDA accepted for Priority Review by FDA
    • Keytruda approved in China for second-line treatment of locally advanced or metastatic ESCC indication
Issue 25 - Jun 19, 2020
  • NCI Director’s Report

    Sharpless: COVID-19 expected to increase mortality by at least 10,000 deaths from breast and colorectal cancers over 10 years

    The COVID-19 pandemic will likely cause at least 10,000 excess deaths from breast cancer and colorectal cancer over the next 10 years in the United States.

  • ACS faces precipitous drop in fundraising

    Uncertainty surrounds fall round of grants

    The American Cancer Society has raised $160 million so far this year, an astonishingly low number for an organization that historically has booked about half of its funds from walks, runs, and relays that take place in the spring and early summer.

  • Guest Editorial

    Conquest of COVID-19: Publish it to death?

    Early in the War Against Cancer, when huge amounts of federal funds were suddenly funneled into cancer research, many scientists and clinicians working in other fields suddenly found it convenient—if not essential—to incorporate cancer into the title of their grant applications.

  • COVID-19 Updates

    • FDA joins Reagan-Udall, Friends of Cancer Research to form COVID-19 Diagnostics Evidence Accelerator
    • Research!America seeks $26 billion boost to NIH, CDC, FDA funding in FY21
    • Algorithm helps select breast cancer patients for urgent surgery or chemotherapy during pandemic
    • FDA issues warning letters to companies marketing antibody tests
    • TERAVOLT registry tracks outcomes of treatments among thoracic cancer patients with COVID-19
    • Immunotherapy clinical trial for COVID-19 open at Mount Sinai
  • In Brief

    • Siteman Cancer Center earns highest NCI rating
    • MSK’s Charles L. Sawyers named AACR Academy president-elect
    • Postow, Merea, named to new positions at MSK
    • Kunle Odunsi named SITC board member
    • Glenn D. Steele Jr. named chair of City of Hope board of directors
    • David Cortez named associate director of basic science research at VICC
    • Jessica Karen Wong joins Fox Chase
    • OSUCCC – James Cancer Diagnostic Center speeds up diagnosis, treatment
    • Roswell Park dermatology expert Oscar Colegio dies at 47
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  • Trials & Tribulations

    Mobile pharmacies—driving down rural cancer care disparities

    People living in rural communities are often located far away from the major cancer centers that offer a full spectrum of treatments, including clinical trials. 

  • Clinical Roundup

    • LLS, NCI and Children’s Oncology Group collaborate on global master clinical trial for acute leukemia
    • Research and framework for genetic testing in prostate cancer supports broader use of panels, testing in early stage disease
    • Berzosertib shows promise in first clinical trial
    • Tecentriq improves response rate in early TNBC
    • ACE-CL-001, ASCEND trials demonstrate long-term efficacy and tolerability of Calquence in CLL
    • Blood test to monitor cancer is up to 10 times more sensitive than current methods
  • Drugs & Targets

    • Keytruda receives second biomarker-based indication from FDA, regardless of tumor type
    • FoundationOne CDx receives FDA approval as companion diagnostic with Keytruda
    • Lurbinectedin receives accelerated approval by FDA for metastatic SCLC
    • Gemtuzumab ozogamicin receives extended indication for CD33-positive AML in pediatric patients
    • City of Hope signs licensing agreement with Scopus BioPharma to develop novel, targeted IO gene therapy
    • Royal Philips and MD Anderson to facilitate personalized oncology treatments and clinical trial matching based on genomic markers
    • Isoray, University of Cincinnati physicians company sign research agreement to study head and neck cancers