Some Good News

Hester Hill Schnipper, LICSW, OSW-C Program Manager, Oncology Social Work

JUNE 07, 2017

As many of you know, the annual ASCO Conference took place in Chicago over the past week. There was no single blockbuster announcement, but there were a number of encouraging results. This one about a particular new targeted therapy is especially hopeful.

Please note that this drug, Larotrectinib, demonstrated value in virtually all cancer types in which it has been tested. This is very important because I often hear frustration expressed re why is so much research being done for cancer X and not much for cancer Y. Increasingly, researchers are discovering that there are genetic similarities among many cancers, and that, for example, drugs that target particular mutations sometimes found in colon cancer may work just as well for those same mutations that sometimes appear in lung cancer. Much information turns out to be widely useful.

Here is the start of the Medscape report and a link to read more:

Striking Results' in All Cancer Types: Larotrectinib
Zosia Chustecka

A novel targeted drug that shows remarkable responses in every cancer type in which it has been tested has been hailed as "first oral tumor-agnostic therapy."
The investigational drug, larotrectinib (under development by LOXO), is selective for tropomyosin receptor kinase (TRK) fusions, which are found across a range of different cancer types, including both rare and common cancers. The drug has shown unprecedented high response rates in all 17 tumor types in which it has been tested so far.
The new data were presented here at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2017 Annual Meeting. The overall response rate was 76%, which is "quite unusual for a targeted therapy," and complete responses were seen in 12% of patients, all of whom had advanced cancers, which is "nearly unheard of," commented discussant for the paper,
Trever Bivona, MD, PhD, from the University of California, San Francisco. "These are very striking results," he commented, and several delegates in the overflowing room congratulated Dr Hyman on an "outstanding presentation" and the "spectacular results."

Read more:

Above content provided by Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. For advice about your medical care, consult your doctor.
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