Author Interviews, BMJ, Cancer Research, Infections / 13.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_51239" align="alignleft" width="120"]Prof. Kai-feng Pan Director. Department of Cancer Epidemiology Peking University School of Oncology Beijing Cancer Hospital & Institute Peking University Cancer Hospital Prof. Kai-feng Pan[/caption] Prof. Kai-feng Pan Director. Department of Cancer Epidemiology Peking University School of Oncology Beijing Cancer Hospital & Institute Peking University Cancer Hospital  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Based on a high-risk population in China, we have conducted a large randomized factorial-designed intervention trial (Shandong Intervention Trial) to examine the effect of short-term Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) treatment and 7.3-year vitamin and garlic supplementation on gastric cancer. During 14.7-years’ follow-up in the trial, 2-week treatment for H. pylori resulted in statistically significant reduction in gastric cancer incidence. Results for gastric cancer mortality and for the effects of garlic and vitamin supplementation, though promising, were not statistically significant. Longer follow-up was needed to determine whether the reductions in gastric cancer incidence from H. pylori treatment would persist and lead to a demonstrable reduction in gastric cancer mortality. It also remained unknown whether vitamin and garlic supplementation would yield a statistically significant reduction in gastric cancer incidence and mortality with additionally extended follow-up. In addition, the entire spectrum of effects of these interventions needs to be understood. 
Author Interviews, Breast Cancer, JAMA, USPSTF / 12.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_46135" align="alignleft" width="200"]Dr. Carol Mangione M.D., M.S.P.H., F.A.C.P Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center Division Chief of General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research Professor of Medicine. Barbara A. Levey, MD, and Gerald S. Levey, MD Endowed chair in medicine David Geffen School of Medicine University of California Dr. Mangione[/caption] Dr. Carol Mangione, M.D., M.S.P.H., F.A.C.P. Division Chief of General Internal Medicine and Health Services Research Professor of Medicine Barbara A. Levey, MD, and Gerald S. Levey, MD, endowed chair in Medicine David Geffen School of Medicine University of California Los Angeles Professor of public health at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health.  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: We all want to find better ways to help prevent breast cancer, a disease that impacts the lives of too many women in the United States each year. Fortunately, the Task Force found there are steps that women at increased risk can take to reduce their chances of developing breast cancer.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, MRI, Prostate Cancer, UCLA / 12.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_51263" align="alignleft" width="150"]Rajiv Jayadevan, MD Department of Urology UCLA Dr. Jayadevan[/caption] Rajiv Jayadevan, MD and  Leonard S. Marks, MD Department of Urology UCLA MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Men with low risk prostate cancer often enter “active surveillance” programs. These programs allow patients to defer definitive treatment (and avoid their associated side effects) until more aggressive disease is detected, if at all. Patients typically undergo a “confirmatory biopsy” 6 to 12 months after diagnosis to verify that their disease is low risk, and then undergo repeat biopsies every 1 to 2 years. These biopsies have traditionally been performed under the guidance of transrectal ultrasonography. Transrectal ultrasonography is unable to accurately visualize tumors within the prostate, necessitating that biopsy cores be obtained systematically from all parts of the prostate. MRI-ultrasonography fusion biopsy is a newer technology that has been shown to characterize biopsy findings more accurately than transrectal ultrasonography, leading to improved disease detection. This technology also allows us to visualize tumors within the prostate, and directly target these tumors during a biopsy session.
Author Interviews, Biomarkers, JAMA, Pediatrics / 09.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_28740" align="alignleft" width="200"]Elizabeth D. Kantor, PhD MPH Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center NY, NY Dr. Elizabeth D. Kantor[/caption] Elizabeth D. Kantor, PhD MPH Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center NY, NY MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: There has been recent interest in understanding how exposures in childhood and adolescence relate to later-life health outcomes. Although inflammation is thought to play a role in the etiology of various diseases, little is known about the long-term implications of inflammation in early life. We therefore sought to evaluate how erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), a marker of inflammation, measured among ostensibly healthy men in late adolescence, relates to subsequent cause-specific mortality. We found that men with high inflammation in late adolescence experienced increased mortality due to cancer and cardiovascular disease.
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, Chemotherapy / 04.09.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_42572" align="alignleft" width="200"]Bishal Gyawali, MD, PhD Department of Medicine Brigham and Women's Hospital Dr. Bishal Gyawali[/caption] Bishal Gyawali, MD, PhD Department of Medicine Brigham and Women’s Hospital  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Cancer drugs are prescribed to the patients based on results from trials. Usually, these are superiority trials meaning the cancer drugs prove that they are better than the treatment we already have. Recently, more and more cancer drugs are approved on the basis of non-inferiority trials. In these trials, the cancer drugs only prove that they are not worse than the treatment we already have ( instead of proving they are better). Such an approach is considered justified if the new drug provides any other benefit such as lower cost, easy to administer or improved quality of life.
Author Interviews, Brain Cancer - Brain Tumors, Imperial College / 20.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_50964" align="alignleft" width="149"]Georgios Giamas, (Dr. Biol. Hum.) Professor of Cancer Cell Signalling Director of Research and Knowledge Exchange University of Sussex -School of Life Sciences Visiting Professor, Imperial College, Londo Prof. Georgios Giamas[/caption] Georgios Giamas, (Dr. Biol. Hum.) Professor of Cancer Cell Signalling Director of Research and Knowledge Exchange University of Sussex -School of Life Sciences Visiting Professor, Imperial College, London MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: This study focuses on Glioblastoma (GBM), which is one of the most aggressive solid tumours for which treatment options and biomarkers are limited. MedicalResearch.com: What are the main findings? - Glioblastoma cells produce nanosized vesicles (aka: extracellular vesicles) that contain specific protein signatures, which can indicate the behaviour and phenotype of the respective cells of origin. -We have identified and described certain vesicle-associated biomarkers that correspond to the most aggressive brain cancers. -Our results can provide insights for the development of new diagnostic and therapeutic methods as well as personalized treatment strategies
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, FDA, Vaccine Studies / 14.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_50871" align="alignleft" width="150"]Dr. Graca Dores (left) and Dr. Perez-Vilar (senior author) Dr. Graca Dores (left) and Dr. Perez-Vilar (senior author)[/caption] Dr. Graca Dores MD MPH US Food and Drug Administration Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research Office of Biostatistics and Epidemiology Division of Epidemiology Silver Spring, Maryland Oklahoma City, OK MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Would you briefly explain what Sipuleucel-T is used for?  Response: Sipuleucel-T was the first therapeutic vaccine approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2010.  It is indicated for the treatment of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic, metastatic, castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC; prostate cancer that spreads while an individual is on hormone-blocking therapy).  During the preparation of this product, the patient’s cells are collected (leukapheresis), sent for processing to generate a dose of patient-specific vaccine, and then administered intravenously back to the patient.  This process is repeated approximately every two weeks for a total of three doses. Except for the pre-marketing clinical trials that were reviewed during the sipuleucel-T approval process, post-marketing studies that have evaluated the safety profile of sipuleucel-T are scarce. Therefore, we used the FDA’s Adverse Event Reporting System (FAERS) database to summarize the adverse events reported to FDA by industry, medical professionals, and consumers.  We also assessed whether sipuleucel-T and specific adverse events (product-event pairs) were reported more than expected compared to all other drug/biologic-adverse event pairs in the FAERS database.
Author Interviews, JAMA, Mayo Clinic, Pancreatic, USPSTF / 14.08.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_50834" align="alignleft" width="138"]Dr. Chyke A. Doubeni, M.D., M.P.H. Dr. Doubeni is a family physician and The inaugural director of the Mayo Clinic Center for Health Equity and Community Engagement Research Dr. Doubeni[/caption] Dr. Chyke A. Doubeni, M.D., M.P.H. Dr. Doubeni is a family physician and The inaugural director of the Mayo Clinic Center for Health Equity and Community Engagement Research MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force uses systematic review of existing research to make recommendations on clinical preventive services that are delivered in primary care, with the goal to promote and improve health for all Americans. Although pancreatic cancer is an uncommon condition in the general population, it is often deadly. Pancreatic cancer is now the third most common cause of cancer death in the United States, and could become the second leading cause if current trends continue. The vast majority of people with pancreatic cancer are diagnosed at a late stage and, unfortunately, even when caught early enough when surgery could be most effective, only a little over one-third of patients survive beyond five years.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Coffee / 21.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: coffee-smell caffeineMr Jue Sheng Ong,  PhD Student  QIMR Berghofer’s Statistical Genetics Group MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Previous findings have shown conflicting results on whether coffee is associated with cancer risk. To evaluate whether there’s any evidence for a causal relationship between coffee and cancer outcomes, we performed two types of association analyses using data from the half a million participants in the UK.
  • We first studied whether an individual’s self-reported coffee consumption is related to their overall risk of developing or dying from any cancers.
  • Then, we repeated the analyses using genetically predicted coffee intake (using about 35 genetic markers related with coffee intake) instead of their self-reported consumption: a technique known as mendelian randomization which is commonly used in modern epidemiology to remove bias from environmental confounders.
Using both techniques, we found no evidence to support a relationship between coffee consumption and the risk of developing or dying from cancers.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Hormone Therapy, JAMA, Prostate Cancer, University of Pennsylvania / 15.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_50254" align="alignleft" width="180"]Ravi Jayadevappa, PhD, MS Department of Medicine Perelman School of Medicine University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA 19104-2676  Dr. Jayadevappa[/caption] Ravi Jayadevappa, PhD, MS Department of Medicine Perelman School of Medicine University of Pennsylvania Philadelphia, PA 19104-2676  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: In the US, prostate cancer is the most commonly diagnosed non-skin cancer and the second leading cause of cancer death among men. Research shows that hormone therapy or ADT reduces the levels of male hormones in the body, called androgens, to stop them from stimulating cancer cells to grow., and thus is effective in reducing the spread and progression of prostate cancer. At the same time, some research has suggested that decreasing androgen levels may increase the risk factors for Alzheimer’s and dementia, including loss of lean body mass, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and depression. The ADT therapy may lead to impaired neuron growth and the regeneration of axons, thus affecting the cognitive function. Thus there is growing interest in the possible association between exposure to ADT and cognitive dysfunction. Our study investigates the association between exposure to ADT and subsequent diagnosis of Alzheimer’s or dementia in elderly, fee-for-service Medicare enrollees using SEER-Medicare linked databases.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA / 03.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_46733" align="alignleft" width="120"]Farhad Islami, MD PhD Scientific Director, Surveillance Research American Cancer Society, Inc. Atlanta, GA 30303 Dr. Islami[/caption] Farhad Islami, MD PhD Scientific Director, Surveillance Research American Cancer Society, Inc MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: In the United States, cancer is the second leading cause of death, and premature cancer deaths impose significant economic burden. Contemporary information on the economic burden of cancer mortality can inform policies and help prioritize resources for cancer prevention and control, but this information is lacking. In our study, we provide contemporary estimates for the loss of future earnings (lost earnings) due to cancer death at national and state levels for all cancers combined and for major cancers.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Pediatrics, Technology / 02.07.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: atomwiseAbraham Heifets, PhD Department of Computer Science University of Toronto  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this announcement? How many children and adolescents are affected by pediatric cancer? Response: Cancer is diagnosed in more than 15,000 children and adolescents each year. Many cancers, including pediatric cancer, do not have effective treatments and for those that do, it is estimated that 80% have serious adverse effects that impact long-term health. 
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Genetic Research, Pediatrics / 24.06.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_49846" align="alignleft" width="143"]Philip J. Lupo, PhD, MPH Co-Director, Childhood Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Program, Texas Children's Cancer Center Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics Section of Hematology-Oncology, Member, Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center Baylor College of Medicine Adjunct Associate Professor, Human Genetics Center, Division of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences University of Texas School of Public Health Dr. Lupo[/caption] Philip J. Lupo, PhD, MPH Co-Director, Childhood Cancer Epidemiology and Prevention Program, Texas Children's Cancer Center Associate Professor, Department of Pediatrics Section of Hematology-Oncology, Member, Dan L. Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center Baylor College of Medicine Adjunct Associate Professor, Human Genetics Center, Division of Epidemiology, Human Genetics and Environmental Sciences University of Texas School of Public Health   MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: While cancer risk in children with certain chromosomal defects like Down syndrome is well established, much less is known for children with birth defects where there is no known genetic cause, sometimes called non-chromosomal defects. Non-chromosomal defects, as a group, affect more children, but one of the primary challenges of understanding risk among these children is that limited sample sizes make studying specific defects, like spina bifida, more difficult. Because of that, we gathered data from birth, birth defect, and cancer registries across Texas, Arkansas, Michigan, and North Carolina to generate a birth cohort of more than 10 million children born between 1992 and 2013. We looked at diagnoses of cancer until 18 years of age to determine differences in cancer risk between those with and without birth defects.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Cost of Health Care, JAMA, Pain Research / 21.06.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_49868" align="alignleft" width="200"]Changchuan (Charles) Jiang MD, MPH MSSLW Internal Medicine Residency Program, Class of 2020 Ichan School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Dr. Jiang[/caption] Changchuan (Charles) Jiang MD, MPH MSSLW Internal Medicine Residency Program Class of 2020 Ichan School of Medicine at Mount Sinai MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Chronic pain is one of the common side effects of cancer treatments and it has been linked to low life quality, lower adherence to treatment, higher medical cost. As the population of cancer survivors grows rapidly, chronic pain will be a major public health issue in this population. We know from previous studies that chronic pain is common in certain cancers such as breast cancer. However, little was known about the epidemiology of chronic pain in the cancer survivors until our study.
ASCO, Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Cost of Health Care, Race/Ethnic Diversity / 06.06.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_49644" align="alignleft" width="161"]Blythe J.S. Adamson, PhD, MPH Senior Quantitative Scientist Flatiron Health Dr. Adamson[/caption] Blythe J.S. Adamson, PhD, MPH Senior Quantitative Scientist Flatiron Health MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Racial disparities in access and outcomes have been documented across the full trajectory of cancer-related care. This includes access to prevention and screening, to early diagnosis, treatment, survival and other health outcomes. While these disparities have been well documented, finding mechanisms to reduce disparities is more challenging. One potential mechanism to reduce treatment disparities is to improve access to insurance coverage. The Affordable Care Act (ACA), passed in March 2010, included as its overall goals the improvement in healthcare quality and access, and enhancing equity in treatment and outcomes. The ACA allowed states to expand Medicaid to poor and near-poor adults, and this was implemented by many states starting in 2014. In addition, the ACA established private insurance marketplaces with income-based premium subsidies and limits on out-of-pocket spending for qualifying low-income enrollees. Prior research has demonstrated that ACA Medicaid expansions are associated with increased coverage and improved overall access for cancer survivors; and for newly diagnosed patients, the ACA was associated with increased coverage and shifts to earlier stage diagnosis for some cancers. To our knowledge, no research has yet demonstrated that the ACA coverage expansions affected the process of cancer care, specific cancer treatments received or specific treatment outcomes, let alone whether disparities were reduced.  In this study we looked at the time from advanced/metastatic diagnosis to start of systemic treatment for black vs. white patients and based on whether they were diagnosed at a time and in a state that had vs. had not implemented Medicaid expansion. Our study hypothesis was that Medicaid expansion reduced disparity in timely treatment of black patients compared to white patients with advanced cancer. We defined timely treatment as start of systemic therapy within 30 days of advanced/metastatic diagnosis. This is a retrospective observational study, not a randomized controlled trial. In other words, we selected a cohort of patients diagnosed with advanced or metastatic cancers over time and observed whether they received timely treatment. The Flatiron Health EHR-derived database was the principal data source for this research. Flatiron contributing practices include 280 cancer community based clinics and academic hospital outpatient settings (~800 sites of care) representing more than 2.2 million patients with cancer in the United States. Practices are located in 40 states. To produce the database, Flatiron extracted data from structured fields, including demographics, and recorded medication orders and administrations. Flatiron also abstracted unstructured data, using technology assisted review by highly trained clinicians. Abstracted data include diagnosis date, stage, and prescribed oral anticancer medications. The database used for research purposes was de-identified. We also used data from the Kaiser Family Foundation which has tracked Medicaid implementation policies for over twenty years, and the US Bureau of Labor Statistics from which we pulled state-year unemployment rates.
Author Interviews, Colon Cancer / 22.05.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_49285" align="alignleft" width="200"]Dr. Reinier G. S. Meester, PhDPostdoctoral scholar in the Department of MedicineDivision of Gastroenterology and HepatologyStanford Dr. Meester[/caption] Dr. Reinier G. S. Meester, PhD Postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Medicine Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology Stanford MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: Incidence of colorectal cancer has increased for decades in adults under age 50 years in the United States. However, there is still uncertainty regarding the underlying causes of this increase. We studied the patterns in the stage at diagnosis from cancer registry data to assess whether the increases may be due more common use of colonoscopy in the ages 40-49 years, which account for nearly 3 out of 4 young-onset cases. If the increase in incidence were the result of earlier detection from increased colonoscopy use, earlier stage at diagnosis would be expected, whereas if the increased incidence were the result of true rises in risk, relatively later stage at diagnosis would be expected. Our results suggest that the incidence of late-stage (metastatic) colorectal cancer increased at almost twice the relative rate since 1995 (2.9% per year) compared to earlier stages (1.3-1.4% per year). Over 1 in 4 young-onset cases are now diagnosed at a late stage vs. approximately 1 in 5 cases in the 1990s.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Cost of Health Care, JAMA / 19.05.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_49162" align="alignleft" width="191"]Nina Niu Sanford, M.D. Assistant ProfessorUT Southwestern Department of Radiation OncologyDallas TX 75390 Dr. Sanford[/caption] Nina Niu Sanford, M.D.  Assistant Professor UT Southwestern Department of Radiation Oncology Dallas TX 75390  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The background for this study is that we know cancer survivors are at risk for uninsurance or underinsurance and the most commonly cited reason for this is cost of insurance.  However, there have been no prior studies assessing from the patient perspective the reasons for not having insurance. In addition, there has been further recent controversy over the Affordable Care Act, including threats from the current administration to dismantle it.  Thus assessing the impact of the ACA among at risk populations including cancer survivors is timely.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, MD Anderson, Radiation Therapy / 30.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48932" align="alignleft" width="140"]Quynh-Nhu Nguyen, MDDepartment of Radiation OncologyThe University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer CenterHouston Dr. Quynh-Nhu[/caption] Quynh-Nhu Nguyen, MD Department of Radiation Oncology The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Houston MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: This is the first non-spine bone metastases trial comparing higher dose single fraction radiotherapy vs multifraction standard fractionated radiotherapy for patients with painful bone metastases. The results of this trial demonstrated more durable pain relief and superior local control for patients treated in the higher dose(12 Gy-16 Gy)  single fraction RT compared to standard 30 Gy/10 fractions multifractionated regimen.  This trial supports the previous multiple randomized trials which recommend single fraction should be standard palliative radiotherapy regimen for bone metastases.  This trial is unique in that it addressed previous criticism that single fraction does not provide durable palliation with lower 8 gy single fraction and result in higher re-irradiation rates.  This trial on the contrary with the utilization of modern radiotherapy techniques, demonstrated we can safely and more effectively deliver a higher single fraction radiotherapy regimen for improvement in the quality of life for patients.  This higher dose should be the new standard single fraction regimen for patients who are functional and have a longer life expectancy. 
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, CMAJ, Emergency Care / 29.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48843" align="alignleft" width="200"]Keerat Grewal, MD, MSc, FRCPC Schwartz/Reisman Emergency Medicine Institute Mount Sinai Hospital Toronto, ON Dr. Grewal[/caption] Keerat Grewal, MD, MSc, FRCPC Schwartz/Reisman Emergency Medicine Institute Mount Sinai Hospital Toronto, ON  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: Patients with cancer have complex care requirements and often use the emergency department. The purpose of our study was to determine whether continuity of care, cancer expertise, or both, impact outcomes among cancer patients in the emergency setting. Using administrative data we looked at adult patients with cancer who received chemotherapy or radiation therapy in the 30 days prior to an emergency department visit. 
Author Interviews, Environmental Risks, JAMA, Lymphoma, Occupational Health, Toxin Research / 23.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com interview with: Sylvain Lamure, MD, Hematologist, Principal Investigator Pascale Fabbro-Peray, MD, PhD , Epidemiologist, Senior Investigator University of Montpellier, France MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: Occupational exposure to pesticides is a well-documented associated factor for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The main biological mechanisms of both pesticides and chemotherapy are genotoxicity and reactive oxygen species generation. Cellular adaptation among patients exposed to low doses of genotoxic and oxidative compounds might hinder chemotherapy efficiency in lymphoma patients. T hus, we have investigated the association of occupational exposure with response to immunochemotherapy and survival in the subgroup of diffuse large B cell lymphoma, whose treatment is standardized.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Colon Cancer, Genetic Research, Surgical Research / 22.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48735" align="alignleft" width="133"]Valentine N. Nfonsam, MD, MS, FACSAssociate Professor of SurgeryProgram Director, General Surgery ResidencyColon and Rectal SurgeryDivision of Surgical OncologyUniversity of Arizona, Tucson Dr. Nfonsam[/caption] Valentine N. Nfonsam, MD, MS, FACS Associate Professor of Surgery Program Director, General Surgery Residency Colon and Rectal Surgery Division of Surgical Oncology University of Arizona, Tucson  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: The overall incidence of colon cancer in the United states has gone down in the last few decades. However, there has been a significant increase in the incidence of sporadic colon cancer is young patients (<50 years old). The etiology of this phenomenon is likely multi-factorial. These young patients do present with more advanced disease and with aggressive features. We demonstrated in our study that the colon cancer tumor biology was different between young and older patients. We also singled out a particular gene, Cartilage oligomeric Matrix Protein (COMP) which was significantly over-expressed in young patients and demonstrated its role in cancer proliferation and metastasis and also its potential as a prognostic biomarker since we were able to detect it in plasma.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, Pain Research / 19.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48657" align="alignleft" width="166"]Robert C. Miller, MD, MS, MBADepartment of Radiation Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, FloridaUniversity of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore Dr. Miller[/caption] Robert C. Miller, MD, MS, MBA Department of Radiation Oncology, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, Florida University of Maryland School of Medicine, Baltimore MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: "Magic Mouthwash" is one of the most commonly prescribed medications for oral mucositis pain during cancer therapy, but there has not been good evidence in the past to support its use. This trial is the first large randomized controlled trial to demonstrate that both "Magic" mouthwash and doxepin rinse reduce patient reported pain during cancer therapy.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Genetic Research / 18.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Rachid Karam, PhD Director, Ambry Translational Genomics Lab Ambry Genetics  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: DNA genetic testing (DGT) for hereditary cancer genes is now a well accepted clinical practice; however, the interpretation of DNA variation remains a challenge to laboratories and medical providers. RNA genetic testing (RGT) as a supplement to DGT is a means to clarify the clinical actionability of variants in hereditary cancer genes, improving our ability to accurately apply known strategies for cancer risk reduction.
Author Interviews / 16.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48601" align="alignleft" width="165"]Héctor Peinado PhDMicroenvironment and Metastasis LaboratoryMolecular Oncology ProgramSpanish National Cancer Research CenterMadrid, Spain Dr. Peinado[/caption] Héctor Peinado PhD Microenvironment and Metastasis Laboratory Molecular Oncology Program Spanish National Cancer Research Center Madrid, Spain  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: In this study we detected for the first time BRAF mutation by liquid biopsy in melanoma stage III patients that underwent lymphadenectomy. We obtained a novel biofluid from the drainage implanted 24-48 hours post-lymphadenectomy, called exudative seroma, and profiled BRAF mutation in circulating free DNA and extracellular vesicles. Those patients positive for BRAF mutation in the seroma had increased risk of relapse, therefore we believe that this technique identifies patients at risk of relapse by identifying residual disease.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, Health Care Systems, JAMA, Outcomes & Safety, Surgical Research, Yale / 12.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48489" align="alignleft" width="133"]Daniel J. Boffa, MDAssociate Professor of Thoracic SurgeryYale School of Medicine Dr. Boffa[/caption] Daniel J. Boffa, MD Associate Professor of Thoracic Surgery Yale School of Medicine MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Prominent cancer hospitals have been sharing their brands with smaller hospitals in the community.  We conducted a series of nationally representative surveys and found that a significant proportion of the U.S. public assumes that the safety of care is the same at all hospitals that share the same respected brand.  In an effort to determine if safety was in fact the same, we examined complex surgical procedures in the Medicare database. We compared the chance of dying within 90 days of surgery between top-ranked hospitals, and the affiliate hospitals that share their brands.  When taking into account differences in patient age, health, and type of procedure, Medicare patients were 1.4 times more likely to die after surgery at the affiliate hospitals, compared to those having surgery at the top-ranked cancer hospitals.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA, UT Southwestern / 11.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48478" align="alignleft" width="191"]Nina Niu Sanford, M.D. Assistant ProfessorUT Southwestern Department of Radiation OncologyDallas TX 75390 Dr. Niu Sanford[/caption] Nina Niu Sanford, M.D. Assistant Professor UT Southwestern Department of Radiation Oncology Dallas TX 75390 MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?  Response: There has been increasing interest in use of complementary and alternative medicine in the oncology population – both in terms of its potential efficacy and harms. The main finding of this study is that approximately 1/3 of cancer patients and survivors self-reported using complementary or alternative medicine over the past year, the most common being herbal supplements. Of these patients, approximately 1/3 did not disclose to their physicians that they were doing so.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, FDA, JAMA / 01.04.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48283" align="alignleft" width="158"]Emerson Chen, MDChief Fellow, Hematology-Oncology, PGY-6Oregon Health & Science University Dr. Chen[/caption] Emerson Chen, MD Chief Fellow, Hematology-Oncology, PGY-6 Oregon Health & Science University MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings? Response: Many cancer drugs are approved annually giving the appearance of innovation; however, some drugs may have been approved because of a lower bar. Use of lesser endpoints like response rate (how tumor shrinks) and progression-free survival (how tumor has delayed growth) have been proposed to speed trials when compared against traditional endpoints like overall survival (how long patients might live). Using published trials that led to cancer drug approval from 2006 to 2017, we estimated how long it would take to get each of these three endpoints across all cancer drugs and indications to see how much time we could save by using these weaker but faster endpoints. We see that many trials using overall survival used less time than anticipated, and many trials using response rate or progression-free survival actually took quite a bit of time.  In part that is due to researchers needing to document the duration of the response. But, whatever the reason, the time to get each of the three endpoints is actually more similar than different, and we estimate that our current use of  these faster endpoints are saving us only 11 months compared to using only overall survival.
Author Interviews, Brigham & Women's - Harvard, Cancer Research, JAMA / 28.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48205" align="alignleft" width="125"]Isaac Chua MDInstructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical SchoolBoston, Massachusetts Dr. Chua[/caption] Isaac Chua MD Instructor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School Boston, Massachusetts  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study?   Response: Opioids are routinely prescribed for cancer-related pain, but little is known about the prevalence of opioid-related hospitalizations for patients with cancer. Although opioid addiction among patients with cancer is estimated to be as high as 7.7%, our understanding of opioid misuse is based on small, preliminary studies. In light of the wider opioid epidemic, oncologists and palliative care clinicians frequently balance providing patients with legitimate access to opioids while protecting them and the general public from the risks of prescribing these medications.
Author Interviews, Cancer Research, JAMA / 21.03.2019

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: [caption id="attachment_48037" align="alignleft" width="150"]Peter R. Dixon, MDDepartment of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck SurgeryInstitute of Health Policy, Management and EvaluationUniversity of TorontoToronto, Ontario, Canada  Dr. DIxon[/caption] Peter R. Dixon, MD Department of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery Institute of Health Policy, Management and Evaluation University of Toronto Toronto, Ontario, Canada  MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? Response: The word ‘cancer’ is often associated with an aggressive and lethal disease. Innovations in screening and diagnostic tests detect some ‘cancers’ that -- even if left untreated -- pose very low-risk of any symptoms, progression, or mortality. Still, many of these low-risk cancers are treated aggressively and those treatments can have harmful consequences and side-effects. We were interested in determining how influential the word ‘cancer’ is in decisions made by patients about low-risk malignant neoplasms relative to other labels for the same disease.