The Week of May 27 in Review

May 31, 2013

The week of May 27 in review, featuring stories and videos on an FDA approval, T-DM1 for breast cancer, novel agents in early development, and the Notch pathway in gliomas.

Mechanisms of Resistance in Breast Cancer

FDA Approves Both Dabrafenib and Trametinib for Advanced Melanoma

Trials Examine Use of T-DM1 as Combination Therapy for HER2 Breast Cancer

Arsenic Trioxide in Acute Promyelocytic Leukemia

Spotlight on Novel Agents in Early Development

Early Treatment With T-DM1

Notch Holds Promise, but Presents Obstacles as Cancer Target

TweetGeorge W. Sledge, Jr, MD, Chief, Division of Oncology, Professor of Medicine, Stanford University School of Medicine, discusses the mechanisms of resistance in breast cancer.The FDA approved both dabrafenib (Tafinlar) and trametinib (Mekinist) for the treatment of patients with metastatic or unresectable melanoma. The FDA also approved a companion diagnostic to properly identify the patients exhibiting the mutations that are targeted by these agents.Ado-trastuzumab emtansine (Kadcyla, or T-DM1 in clinical trials) received FDA approval in February, and a number of ongoing trials now seek to determine whether the antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) can be combined with other agents.Francesco Lo-Coco, MD, Hematology, University Tor Vergata, speaks at the 2012 American Society of Hematology annual meeting about the use of arsenic trioxide in acute promyelocytic leukemia.The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) is an annual showcase of the latest scientific cancer research, with updates on phase I, often first-in-human clinical trials. This year’s meeting theme, “Personalizing Cancer Care Through Discovery Science,” featured many presentations of novel mechanisms of action for targeting cancer. Following is a review of several studies that delved into how specific therapies work against cancer.Mark D. Pegram, MD, a professor of medicine at Stanford University Medical Center and the director of the Breast Cancer Program at the Stanford Cancer Institute, describes research into the antibody-drug conjugate T-DM1 (trastuzumab emtansine), following its FDA approval in February as a treatment for HER2-positive metastatic breast cancer.