Friday, May 16, 2014

ASCO 2014

Another ASCO season is upon us.  Seems the highlights are likely to be many of the new immunotherapies in various solid tumors.  These drugs are really cool and do a fantastic job tricking the immune system to go after cancer.  Merck, BMS, and Genentech are leading the way in the solid tumors.

CLL and NHL promises to be "HOT" again.  Someday the ASCO organizers will move us out of our small closet where we present the data in Chicago.  At the last ASH meeting, one of the CLL sessions filled up the original presenting room AND four different big overflow halls.  As the session started, we shuttled around like cattle with many of the most important research physicians trying to find a place to sit.

Below are links to projects that I am a part of this year.  ASCO limits you to only TWO first author presentations.  For me, they both relate to CLL this year with GS-9973 (Syk inhibitor) and another idelalisib presentation.  I was able to be senior author on several other presentations including obinutuzumab, lenalidomide, and CD-79/22 Antibody drug conjugates.

Overall a very productive year and many exciting things to come.

Independent evaluation of ibrutinib efficacy 3 years post-initiation of monotherapy in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia/small lymphocytic leukemia including deletion 17p disease.

A phase 3, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluating the efficacy and safety of idelalisib (GS-1101) in combination with bendamustine and rituximab for previously treated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

Second interim analysis of a phase 3 study evaluating idelalisib and rituximab for relapsed CLL.

Health-related quality of life (HRQL) impact of idelalisib (IDELA) in patients (pts) with relapsed chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL): Phase 3 results.

Obinutuzumab (GA101) 1,000 mg versus 2,000 mg in patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL): Results of the phase II GAGE (GAO4768g) trial.

Efficacy of idelalisib in CLL subpopulations harboring del(17p) and other adverse prognostic factors: Results from a phase 3, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

MAGNIFY: A phase 3B, randomized trial of lenalidomide plus rituximab induction and maintenance therapy followed by lenalidomide single-agent versus rituximab maintenance in patients with relapsed/refractory indolent non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL).

Effect of clinical NGS-based cancer genomic profiling on physician treatment decisions in advanced solid tumors.

Phase 2 trial of GS-9973, a selective Syk inhibitor, in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).

Preliminary results of a phase II randomized study (ROMULUS) of polatuzumab vedotin (PoV) or pinatuzumab vedotin (PiV) plus rituximab (RTX) in patients (Pts) with relapsed/refractory (R/R) non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL).

Monday, May 12, 2014


I enjoy listening to National Public Radio (NPR) when I have long drives.  I've set up my iPhone to download podcasts of several programs including "Radiolab" and "This American Life" as they tackle interesting topics in depth.

I came across a recent podcast called "Death and Taxes" and HAD to post a link to it from my blog.  I have an older post from my own blog on dying that triggered a lot of really deep conversations in my own clinic and from several readers who reached out to me afterward. 

The NPR podcast starts out with a 3-4 minute introduction on "inevitability" which doesn't really fit well with the rest of the podcast, but the next 40 minutes are sensational.  While the topic isn't the easiest to encounter, I would encourage any readers of my blog to listen to the 40 minute podcast.  It is really good.  Click on the orange button "Launch Player"