Top in hem/onc: Gardasil 9 expansion, financial toxicity among cancer survivors

Top in hem/onc: Gardasil 9 expansion, financial toxicity among cancer survivors

The FDA recently expanded the indication of HPV 9-valent vaccine, recombinant. It was the top story in hematology/oncology last week.

Another top story was about the financial toxicity of treatment among cancer survivors.

HPV vaccine
The FDA recently expanded the indication of HPV 9-valent vaccine, recombinant. Source: Adobe Stock.

Read these and more top stories in hematology/oncology below:

FDA expands Gardasil 9 approval for head and neck cancer prevention

The FDA expanded the indication of HPV 9-valent vaccine, recombinant (Gardasil 9, Merck) to include the prevention of oropharyngeal and other head and neck cancers caused by HPV types 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52 and 58, according to a manufacturer-issued press release. Read more.

Financial toxicity a lingering, often unexpected burden for cancer survivors

The completion of active treatment is a milestone for all cancer survivors. Yet, even as survivors prepare to transcend the physical, emotional and social repercussions of their cancer journey, many are left with a constant reminder in the form of overwhelming financial hardship. Read more.

FDA approves Zepzelca for metastatic small cell lung cancer

The FDA granted accelerated approval to lurbinectedin (Zepzelca; Jazz Pharmaceuticals, PharmaMar) for adults with metastatic small cell lung cancer that progressed on or after platinum-based chemotherapy. Read more.

Orvacabtageneautoleucel CAR-T shows ‘promising efficacy’ for advanced multiple myeloma

A novel chimeric antigen receptor T-cell therapy showed high response rates among patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma, according to updated results of the EVOLVE trial presented during the ASCO20 Virtual Scientific Program. Read more.

‘Caution over safety’: Adding concurrent pembrolizumab to CRT

Patients with resectable stage IIIA non-small cell lung cancer treated with concurrent pembrolizumab (Keytruda, Merck) plus neoadjuvant concurrent chemoradiation had high pathologic complete response rate at resection; however safety is a concern, according to data presented at the virtual ASCO Annual Meeting.

“When we designed the trial, there wasn’t a whole lot of evidence of either safety or efficacy of combining immune checkpoints inhibitors with chemotherapy and radiation, and nothing related to surgery, for stage III disease,” Nathan A. Pennell, MD, PhD, medical oncologist at the Cleveland Clinic and associate professor medical oncology at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College, told Healio. “Our trial is supportive of other studies combining chemotherapy and/or radiation with immune checkpoints inhibitors.”

A thoracic surgeon determined that nine patients were resectable. These patients received neoadjuvant concurrent chemoradiation (CRT), which included cisplatin, etoposide and 200 mg of concurrent pembrolizumab every 3 weeks, with 45 Gy in 25 fractions. Following this, patients without progression underwent resection and received consolidation pembrolizumab (Keytruda, Merck) for 6 months.

“There was a high complete pathologic response rate in our limited number of patients who underwent resection,” Pennell said.

The pathologic complete response (pCR) rate was 67% for the six patients who underwent resection, according to the abstract.

“This is very supportive and a promising idea to combine this, but the second major message is that this is not a trivial treatment in terms of risk and toxicity for these patients,” Pennell said.

All nine patients included in the study reported serious adverse events, including two grade 5 events. Despite the still unknown relationship between the grade 5 events and concurrent pembrolizumab, the trial was halted because the stopping rule for infeasibility was met and other, larger trials are underway.

“Caution over safety, that’s the main message,” Pennell said.

Source: Healio By Marley V Ghizzone

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