Cancer Currents: An NCI Cancer Research Blog
A blog featuring news and research updates from the National Cancer Institute.
- Immunotherapy Drug with Two Targets Shows Promise against HPV-Related Cancers
The investigational immunotherapy drug bintrafusp alfa (also called M7824), a bifunctional fusion protein, shrank the tumors of some patients with advanced HPV-related cancers, according to results from a phase 1 clinical trial.
- Study Advances Fertility Preservation Approach for Male Cancer Survivors
In a study in young monkeys, researchers showed that a technique using stored testicular tissue led to successful conception. Researchers are hopeful the approach could eventually be a fertility preservation option for young boys being treated for cancer.
- Could a Vaccine Prevent Colorectal Cancer in People with Lynch Syndrome?
Findings from an NCI-funded study suggest a new vaccine approach may have the potential to prevent colorectal cancer in people with Lynch syndrome, an inherited condition that increases an individual's risk for developing certain types of cancer.
- Fewer Women with Ovarian, Breast Cancer Undergo Genetic Testing than Expected
Many women diagnosed with ovarian and breast cancer are not undergoing tests for inherited genetic mutations that can provide important information to help guide decisions about treatment and longer-term cancer screening, a new study has found.
- Researchers Discover Potential Way to Hit Elusive Target in Pancreatic Cancer
Three research groups have found a potential way to kill cancer cells in pancreatic tumors by simultaneously blocking the activity of proteins that interact with KRAS proteins and disrupting an energy-creating process called autophagy.
- Atezolizumab Approved for Some Patients with Triple-Negative Breast Cancer
FDA has approved atezolizumab (Tecentriq) in combination with chemotherapy for the treatment of some women with advanced triple-negative breast cancer. This is the first FDA-approved regimen for breast cancer to include immunotherapy.
- Trial Examines Value of Lymph Node Surgery in Advanced Ovarian Cancer
Surgery to remove all the lymph nodes in the area around an advanced ovarian tumor did not improve survival in a recent randomized clinical trial. The study also found systematic lymphadenectomy was associated with more frequent serious complications.
- Nature’s Bounty: Revitalizing the Discovery of New Cancer Drugs from Natural Products
NCI has launched an ambitious initiative, called the NCI Program for Natural Products Discovery (NPNPD) and funded by the Cancer Moonshot℠, to make it easier for researchers to mine nature for leads on new cancer drugs.
- Targeted Therapy–Immunotherapy Combinations Effective for Advanced Kidney Cancer
In two clinical trials, combination treatments that included an immune checkpoint inhibitor and axitinib (Inlyta) led to better outcomes for patients with advanced kidney cancer than treatment with sunitinib (Sutent), the standard initial therapy.
- Darolutamide Delays the Spread of Some Prostate Cancers
The investigational drug darolutamide can help delay the spread of prostate cancer in some men with the disease, a recent clinical trial shows. In addition, the drug caused fewer side effects than similar prostate cancer drugs.
- Bone Marrow Transplant Drug May Improve Immunotherapy for Metastatic Breast Cancer
The build-up of connective tissue around some types of cancer can act as a barrier to immunotherapy. A new study uses a bone marrow transplant drug, plerixafor, to break down this barrier and improve the efficacy of immune checkpoint inhibitors in animal models of breast cancer.
- UK Clinical Trial Compares E-cigarettes, Nicotine-Replacement Products for Smoking Cessation
Researchers in the United Kingdom have found that e-cigarettes combined with counseling may be more helpful to smokers trying to quit tobacco than counseling and nicotine-replacement products, such as patches, gums, and lozenges.
- Making Cancer Clinical Trials Available to More Patients
NCI is expanding eligibility criteria for its cancer clinical trials in the hope that more patients will join, leading to more rapid advances. The goal is to maximize the number of patients who are eligible to enroll while maintaining their safety.
- Multipronged Approach Eliminates Racial Disparities in Early-Stage Lung Cancer Treatment
Use of a multipronged approach within hospitals, including community centers, not only eliminated treatment disparities among black and white patients with early-stage lung cancer, it also improved treatment rates for all patients, results from a new study show.
- NCI’s Rare Cancer Clinics: Engaging Patients and Fostering Collaboration
NCI has created special clinics that bring together clinicians, patients, and advocates to promote more rapid progress against rare cancers. The effort includes both rare pediatric cancers and central nervous system tumors in adults.
- Treatment for Children with Leukemia Also Effective for Adolescents, Young Adults
A clinical trial found that an intensive treatment regimen developed specifically for children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia is also effective for older adolescents and young adults with the disease.
- Partnering with Small Business to Advance Innovation in Cancer Research and Care
NCI Director Dr. Norman Sharpless describes how NCI’s Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Programs act as “engines of innovation” and shares recommendations from a federal working group for strengthening the programs.
- Dormant Tumor Cells Can Be Sensitized to Chemotherapy
A new study in mice shows that disrupting the relationship between breast cancer cells that spread to bone and normal cells surrounding them makes the cancer cells sensitive to treatment.