MESSAGE FROM THE DIRECTOR
Stan Gerson, MD
Director, Case CCC
Clinical Cancer Experience with PET-MR
A terrific review of the clinical experience in cancer patents of the use of PET-MR was recently published by Drs. Karin Herrmann, Norbert Avril and Pablo Ros, among others. This detailed account summarizes many aspects of the clinical utility of PET-MR in more accurate detection of cancer and cancer metastasis, use in decision-making, comparisons of detection accuracy across cancers, and considerations of reduction in overall radiation imaging exposure, which may especially be an issue in patients with longer life expectancy and pediatric and young adult patients. Its use in minimal residual disease represents another area of ongoing interest.
I ask you to familiarize yourselves with this exciting imaging technology and to consider using this approach as an imaging component of your clinical trials. There are many remaining questions that need to be addressed.
For those at Seidman, the machine is now available for clinical use. Cleveland Clinic will be installing a similar PETMR soon.
Sequester Impact on Biomedical Research - Response from Sen. Brown
For the past couple weeks I have reminded you of the importance of contacting our political leaders to let them know the detrimental effect the sequester has had on research discoveries. One enthusiastic member of the Cancer Center community took the opportunity to write to Sen. Sherrod Brown and wanted to share the response they received back, with the hope that our governmental representatives will continue to push for support of the NIH:
Thank you for getting in touch with me regarding funding for the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
NIH is the cornerstone of medical advancement and innovation in the United States, financing lifesaving research to improve the health and wellbeing of all Americans. I am highly supportive of the NIH's mission and am heartened by its successes. As such, I share your concern that NIH funding is taking a grave hit given budget cuts over the last few years and the effects of sequestration.
Not only are these cuts stifling innovation and research, but they are hurting job creation and may even have a lasting effect on the future workforce pipeline of medical researchers. The average age for a principal investigator (PI) receiving his or her first grant continues to increase, as does the average age for all PIs. In essence, we are losing scientists focusing on basic science and research on innovations that are not yet profitable enough to be championed by private industry. Maintaining robust funding levels for NIH is vitally important to reverse these trends.
I strongly support ample funding for NIH which is why I signed Senators Casey and Burr's FY14 appropriations letter. Funding NIH research will help advance groundbreaking discoveries that lead to better understanding of disease processes, treatments, and health outcomes for Americans. As this year's appropriations process moves forward, please be assured that I will continue to advocate for ample funding for NIH.
Thank you again for getting in touch with me.
United States Senator
CASE CCC IN THE NEWS
Tax-PF Superior to PF as Induction Therapy in HNSCC
Helio/HemOnc Today - Aug 19, 2013
Despite the findings, the question about whether Tax-PF followed by chemoradiotherapy is more effective than standard chemoradiotherapy alone remains unproven, Arlene A. Forastiere, MD, of The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins, David J. Adelstein, MD, of Cleveland Clinic's Taussig Cancer Institute, and Judi Manola, MS, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, wrote in an accompanying editorial.
Long-term Study of Drug Finasteride Shows Safety, Effectiveness in Lowering Prostate Cancer Risk
Plain Dealer - Aug 16, 2013
The trial showed that the drug significantly reduced the risk of prostate cancer. But initial results also showed that a slightly higher percentage of those on the drug developed high-grade cancer than those assigned to the group that took a placebo..."It really put the damper on clinicians [wanting] to use the drug, and of patients wanting to take it," said Dr. Eric Klein, a urologist and chairman of the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute at the Cleveland Clinic.
Breast Cancer Battle: New Tool is Saving Lives
Fox 8 Cleveland - Aug 16, 2013
Doctor Donna Plecha at UH Seidman Cancer Center said, "Instead of seeing four images of a basic mammogram, we may see up to 200 or more images, so it slices the breast in one-millimeter slices, almost like a CT scan."
Kidney Function May Not Affect Vidaza's Safety And Efficacy In Higher-Risk MDS Patients
MDS Beacon - Aug 16, 2013
Dr. Mikkael Sekeres of the Cleveland Clinic, who was not involved with the study, agreed with Dr. Kotsianidis that this study indicates Vidaza is effective and safe in patients with impaired kidney function. "This study reports that patients with abnormal kidney function respond just as well to azacitidine [Vidaza], without any additional toxicities, as those [patients] without kidney abnormalities," said Dr. Sekeres.
AXIS Trial: Second-Line Axitinib Versus Sorafenib
OncLive - Aug 15, 2013
The rationale to examine axitinib in the second-line setting stemmed from evidence suggesting that continued VEGF inhibition remains effective in later lines of treatment, explains Brian I. Rini, MD. As a result, the phase III AXIS trial evenly randomized 723 patients with clear-cell mRCC to receive second-line axitinib or sorafenib. Patient selection was carefully restricted to only one prior therapy; however, this treatment could have been a variety of agents, including cytokines, high-dose IL-2, temsirolimus, and a VEGF inhibitor.
Less Aggressive Prostate Cancer Tumors Tend to Stay that Way Over Time, Study Shows
Plain Dealer - Aug 14, 2013
Not only are the study findings a step toward a better understanding of the biology of prostate cancer, they also help to emphasize the benefit of PSA screening and the fact that most low-grade prostate cancer is over-treated, said Dr. Eric Klein, a urologist and chairman of the Glickman Urological and Kidney Institute at the Cleveland Clinic.
Lack of Elderly Patients in Cancer Trials Leads to Inadequate Treatment Guidance
HemOnc Today - Aug 10, 2013
Consequently, clinicians will need to know more about how to treat and care for this segment of the population, Dale R. Shepard, MD, PhD, co-director of the Taussig Oncology Program for Seniors and staff physician in the department of solid tumor oncology at Cleveland Clinic's Taussig Cancer Institute, said in an interview.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
Graft-versus-Host Disease (GvHD) National Symposium
Registration is open for the Graft-versus-Host Disease (GvHD) National Symposium, Friday, November 1 at the Embassy Suites Cleveland. This conference is intended to raise awareness about the signs and symptoms of GvHD, review cutting edge approaches to prevention and treatment, and highlight and promote research to further our understanding of its cause. The symposium will have two tracks: a scientifically rigorous one for physicians and practitioners, and a survivor track that will focus on challenges faced by BMT recipients and their families. CME credit is available.
This symposium will also feature a poster session. Abstracts should be submitted no later than Friday, September 27 at 5:00 pm to firstname.lastname@example.org. Abstracts will be published in a booklet or the syllabus, which will be given to all participants. Prizes will be awarded. The registration fee for invited presenters is complimentary, but advance registration is required.
Case Comprehensive Cancer Center Microscope Usage Survey
We are attempting to determine microscope usage among Cancer Center members to more fully meet your research needs. We are especially interested in determining your needs for super resolution microscopy. Advances in microscopy and cell biology are intimately intertwined, with new visualization possibilities leading to dramatic leaps in our understanding of how cells function. The recent advances in super resolution microscopy have changed the limits of optical resolution from 250 nm to 20 nm. Biologists are no longer limited to inferring molecular interactions, as it is now possible to see the individual molecules as they interact. We would like to know your interest in bringing super resolution technology to our campus. Please take a few minutes to complete a survey on microscopes and specifically to your need for super resolution microscopy.
Publication Support Acknowledgement
Please remember to acknowledge the valuable support provided by the Cancer Center and its core facilities in your research papers and publications:
"This research was supported by the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (P30CA043703)." OR
"This research was supported by the [insert facility name] Core Facility of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center (P30CA043703)."
Melanoma Research Alliance
The Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA) announces its seventh annual Request for Proposals (RFP), soliciting translational research grant applications from scientists and clinicians around the world. The RFP calls for ideas that could lead to high impact near-term clinical application in melanoma detection, prevention, diagnosis, staging, or treatment.
- Team Science Awards: Multidisciplinary teams of two or more PIs will receive funding to support projects with the potential to lead to transformative advances in prevention, early detection, staging and/or treatment of melanoma. All PIs in the team share authority for scientific leadership. An investigator may serve as a PI on only one LOI. Each team must include at least one Young Investigator as a co-investigator whose work must be integral to one or more of the aims of the proposal.
LOI Deadline: October 7
- Young Investigator Awards: Investigators within four years of their first academic faculty appointment at the time of application will be provided funding to accomplish innovative, translational research projects. Young Investigator applicants must designate a Mentor, i.e., a senior investigator at the same institution who will ensure that adequate support and guidance are provided for successful completion of the proposed research project. Fellows or others who are in training or support positions are not eligible to apply. However, applications from those who have secured an independent faculty position commencing by July 1, 2014 will be considered; in this case, a letter from an institutional official or department chairperson confirming the planned date of faculty appointment is required at the time of application.
Proposal Deadline: November 13
- Established Investigator Academic-Industry Partnership Awards: These awards are designed to facilitate progress via interactions between the academic and industrial research sectors, and will be co-funded by MRA and an industrial collaborator whose involvement is essential to the project. The PI must be an academic investigator. Investigators with an established record of scientific productivity will receive funding to conduct projects supported by preliminary data. Industry funds and/or in-kind support (e.g., reagents, clinical grade drugs, equipment, contract services) must match but may exceed MRA funds for the award period. Industry scientists may serve as co-investigators or collaborators, but may not be PIs.
Proposal Deadline: November 13
Fourth Annual DeGregorio Foundation Award for Cancers of the Upper GI Tract
The DeGregorio Family Foundation for Gastric and Esophageal Cancer is pleased to announce the 4th annual funding opportunity for gastroesophageal malignancies. The Foundation seeks to promote and facilitate collaborative research on the pathogenesis, early diagnosis, and treatment of upper gastrointestinal malignancies. We support high quality, innovative, and transformative translational and bent research to improve the understanding of the biology of these diseases, identification of potential novel therapeutic targets, or in the development and evaluation of novel biomarkers for early diagnosis and treatment.
Deadline: October 31