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FDA Approves Expanded Use for Melanoma Drug

Posted 29 Oct 2015 by

THURSDAY, Oct. 29, 2015 – The melanoma drug Yervoy (ipilimumab) can now be used to reduce the risk of the deadly skin cancer returning after surgery, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Thursday. The expanded use of this intravenous drug is an adjunct therapy for patients with stage 3 melanoma, in which the cancer has reached one or more lymph nodes. Patients with this stage of melanoma typically have surgery to remove melanoma skin tumors and nearby lymph nodes, according to an FDA news release. Melanoma is the most aggressive type of skin cancer and is the leading cause of death from skin cancer. The "approval of Yervoy extends its use to patients who are at high risk of developing recurrence of melanoma after surgery," Dr. Richard Pazdur, director of the FDA's Office of Hematology and Oncology Products at the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, said in the news release. ... Read more

Related support groups: Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Yervoy, Ipilimumab

FDA Approves Yervoy to Reduce the Risk of Melanoma Returning after Surgery

Posted 28 Oct 2015 by

October 28, 2015 – Today the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expanded the approved use of Yervoy (ipilimumab) to include a new use as adjuvant therapy for patients with stage III melanoma, to lower the risk that the melanoma will return following surgery. Melanoma, the most aggressive type of skin cancer, is the leading cause of death from skin cancer. Melanoma is more likely to spread to other parts of the body than other forms of skin cancer and has been on the rise over the past several decades, according to the National Cancer Institute, with an estimated 73,870 new cases and 9,940 deaths from the disease this year. In stage III melanoma, the cancer has reached one or more lymph nodes. Patients with stage III melanoma are generally treated by surgery to remove the melanoma skin lesions and the nearby lymph nodes. “Today’s approval of Yervoy extends its use to patients who are at ... Read more

Related support groups: Melanoma, Skin Cancer, Melanoma - Metastatic, Yervoy, Ipilimumab

BMS Receives FDA Approval for Opdivo (nivolumab) + Yervoy (ipilimumab) Regimen in BRAF V600 Wild-Type Melanoma

Posted 1 Oct 2015 by

PRINCETON, N.J., October 1, 2015 --(BUSINESS WIRE)--Bristol-Myers Squibb Company (NYSE: BMY) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Opdivo (nivolumab) in combination with Yervoy (ipilimumab), for the treatment of patients with BRAF V600 wild-type unresectable or metastatic melanoma.1 Today’s announcement marks the first and only FDA approval of a Regimen of two Immuno-Oncology agents in cancer. This indication is approved under accelerated approval based on tumor response rate and durability of response.1 Continued approval for this indication may be contingent upon verification and description of clinical benefit in confirmatory trials.1 The approval is based on data from the pivotal study, CheckMate -069, which was the first to report outcomes of the Opdivo + Yervoy Regimen in previously untreated patients with unresectable or metastatic melanoma. R ... Read more

Related support groups: Melanoma, Melanoma - Metastatic, Yervoy, Ipilimumab, Nivolumab, Opdivo

Finding Disease Cures Can Take Up to a Century: Analysis

Posted 24 Sep 2015 by

THURSDAY, Sept. 24, 2015 – A team of scientists has looked back over decades of discovery to conclude that it can take dozens of years, even a century, for cumulative research to lead to a cure for a single disease. The finding is disheartening given the current U.S. government underfunding of the basic science needed to investigate diseases, said a team led by Dr. R. Sanders Williams, president of the San Francisco-based Gladstone Institutes, a biomedical research organization. "As shown by our analysis, new treatments depend upon a broad base of scientific knowledge plus special contributions from a few exceptional scientists," Williams said in an institute news release. For anyone suffering from an illness, the dream word is "cure." True cures for disease remain rare, though. But, in the new study the Gladstone team traced the long investigative paths linking generations of ... Read more

Related support groups: Diabetes, Type 2, Cancer, Parkinson's Disease, Heart Failure, Congestive Heart Failure, Diabetes, Type 1, Alzheimer's Disease, Diabetes Mellitus, Diagnosis and Investigation, Yervoy, Parkinsonism, Ipilimumab, Orkambi, Kalydeco, Ivacaftor/lumacaftor, Ivacaftor

U.S. Oncologists Decry High Cost of Cancer Drugs

Posted 23 Jul 2015 by

THURSDAY, July 23, 2015 – Soaring costs for cancer drugs are hurting patient care in the United States, a group of top oncologists claim. "High cancer-drug prices are affecting the care of patients with cancer and our health care system," Dr. Ayalew Tefferi, a hematologist at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said in a Mayo news release. Tefferi and his colleagues made a number of recommendations on how to address the problem in a commentary published July 23 in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices is one of the suggestions the team of 118 leading cancer experts offered as a possible solution. Along with their recommendations, the group also expressed support for a patient-based grassroots movement on that is demanding action on the issue. "The average gross household income in the U.S. is about $52,000 per year. For an insured patient with ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Lupron, Prostate Cancer, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Tretinoin, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Fluorouracil, Lung Cancer, Rituxan, Colorectal Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma

Medicines Are Biggest Culprit in Fatal Allergic Reactions: Study

Posted 10 Oct 2014 by

THURSDAY, Oct. 9, 2014 – Although food allergies have garnered a lot of attention lately, a new study reports that medications are actually the biggest cause of sudden deaths related to allergy. Over a little more than a decade, nearly 60 percent of the allergy-related deaths were caused by medications, while less than 7 percent were caused by food allergies, the study found. "Medications can be dangerous," said study researcher Dr. Elina Jerschow, director of the Drug Allergy Center at Montefiore Medical Center and assistant professor of medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in New York City. While research from other countries has reported medications as a major culprit in anaphylaxis-related deaths, Jerschow said, the problem has been less defined in the United States. One reason is that there is no national registry for anaphylaxis deaths, she said. The study was ... Read more

Related support groups: Provera, Amoxicillin, Depo-Provera, Doxycycline, Metronidazole, Cephalexin, Clindamycin, Penicillin, Methotrexate, Bactrim, Azithromycin, Cipro, Accutane, Ciprofloxacin, Augmentin, Levaquin, Lupron, Flagyl, Keflex, Zithromax

Melanoma Drug Trials Show Significant Promise

Posted 2 Jun 2014 by

MONDAY, June 2, 2014 – A relatively new drug appears effective in boosting survival for patients battling advanced melanoma, the deadliest form of skin cancer, according to a pair of preliminary studies. The drug Yervoy (ipilimumab) "takes the brakes off the immune system," improving the body's ability to target and attack melanoma, said Dr. Philip Friedlander, assistant professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai's Icahn School of Medicine in New York City. The two trials report that Yervoy can dramatically extend survival for patients with stage 3 and stage 4 melanoma, adding months and years to their lives both on its own and in combination with another cancer drug. "It's a major breakthrough," Friedlander said of the medication, which the Food and Drug Administration approved in 2011. "It's a novel immune approach that's harnessing one's own immune system to fight cancer." The results ... Read more

Related support groups: Melanoma, Yervoy, Ipilimumab

Cancer Chemotherapy Tied to Slight Rise in Risk for Leukemia

Posted 14 Feb 2013 by

THURSDAY, Feb. 14 – Chemotherapy can be a lifesaver for thousands of cancer patients, but a new study suggests that it might slightly raise the odds for a type of leukemia later in life. Over the past 30 years, the risk for acute myeloid leukemia (AML) has increased for patients who underwent chemotherapy for certain forms of cancer, particularly non-Hodgkin lymphoma, the new study found. On the other hand, the researchers from the U.S. National Cancer Institute said other cancer survivors may have a reduced risk for AML due to a change in chemotherapy agents that occurred decades ago. One expert not connected to the study stressed that cancer patients need to put the findings into perspective. "It's important to realize that the risk of developing acute myeloid leukemia related to prior chemotherapy is small and increases with the number of chemotherapy treatments given over time," ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Accutane, Lupron, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Tretinoin, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Fluorouracil, Rituxan, Claravis, Isotretinoin, Votrient, Tarceva, Avastin

Woman's Recovery From Advanced Melanoma Could Help Guide Research

Posted 7 Mar 2012 by

WEDNESDAY, March 7 – Combining the immune-based drug ipilimumab with targeted radiation therapy improved one advanced melanoma patient's ability to fight the deadly skin cancer, a new study says. The treatment triggered a strong immune response, which resulted in shrinkage of both the tumor treated with radiation as well as tumors located at distant locations in the body, according to the study, published in the March 8 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. The patient was followed for seven years, from her initial diagnosis of melanoma in 2004, through a series of treatments, to her eventual disease regression in April 2011. According to health experts, this is a rare documented case of an immune response called the "abscopal effect" that can occur in cancer treatment. Although the results were dramatic in this patient, one expert said such cases are isolated. "Although this ... Read more

Related support groups: Melanoma, Yervoy, Ipilimumab

Targeted Drugs, Lung CT Screening Top Cancer Advances in 2011

Posted 6 Dec 2011 by

TUESDAY, Dec. 6 – As the war against cancer continues, a group representing U.S. oncologists has picked its "Top Five" list of advances in cancer care for 2011. Leading the list are approvals for a bevy of new, targeted drugs for tough-to-treat malignancies, plus promising results suggesting CT chest scans may be an early-detection screen for lung cancer. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) this week issued its annual report on progress against cancer. The report was published online Dec. 5 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. "The big news has been targeted drug therapy," noted Dr. Nicholas Vogelzang, head of the section of genitourinary cancer at the Nevada Cancer Institute in Las Vegas and co-executive editor of the report. "We now have drugs that are very selective for some solid tumors. We now have [new] drugs affecting melanoma and lung cancer, which is pretty ... Read more

Related support groups: Breast Cancer, Lung Cancer, Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, Melanoma, Aromasin, Exemestane, Xalkori, Zelboraf, Vemurafenib, Yervoy, Crizotinib, Ipilimumab

Cancer Patients Should Ask Doctors to Use Simple Terms

Posted 28 Sep 2011 by

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 28 – Cancer patients are often faced with many difficult-to-understand treatment choices that can have serious side effects and even mean the difference between life and death. That's why it's crucial that patients insist doctors use plain language in explaining the options, advised Angela Fagerlin, an associate professor of internal medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and a researcher at the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center. "People are making life and death decisions that may affect their survival and they need to know what they're getting themselves into. Cancer treatments and tests can be serious. Patients need to know what kind of side effects they might experience as a result of the treatment they undergo," Fagerlin said in a university news release. She and her colleagues outlined a number of tips to help patients get the information they need ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Provera, Depo-Provera, Methotrexate, Breast Cancer, Accutane, Lupron, Prostate Cancer, Tamoxifen, Medroxyprogesterone, Arimidex, Femara, Tretinoin, Lupron Depot, Gleevec, Fluorouracil, Lung Cancer, Rituxan, Colorectal Cancer, Renal Cell Carcinoma

The War on Cancer Continues

Posted 20 Sep 2011 by

TUESDAY, Sept. 20 – Forty years after President Nixon signed the National Cancer Act into law and pledged to put the country's resources to work to find better treatments for cancer, substantial victories have been scored against some, but not all, cancers. That's the core finding of a new report, the AACR Cancer Progress Report 2011, released Tuesday by the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR). The National Cancer Act promised more funding for cancer research and prevention. Since then, death rates for many cancers have dropped significantly. From 1990 to 2007, death rates for all cancers combined dropped 22 percent for men and 14 percent for women, resulting in nearly 900,000 fewer deaths during that time, according to the report. Today, more than 68 percent of adults live five years or more after being diagnosed, up from 50 percent in 1975. The five-year survival rate for ... Read more

Related support groups: Cancer, Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer, Lung Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Brain Tumor, Melanoma, Pancreatic Cancer, Ovarian Cancer, Cervical Cancer, Zelboraf, Vemurafenib, Yervoy, Ipilimumab

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