Breaking News
March 23, 2019 - The Current issue of “The view from here” is concerned with Cancer
March 23, 2019 - Mouse model validates how ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria affect acne
March 23, 2019 - Individual amygdala neurons respond to touch, imagery and sounds
March 23, 2019 - Combination of two topical creams can prevent cancer
March 23, 2019 - Study suggests depression screening when assessing African-Americans for schizophrenia
March 23, 2019 - New electronic support system for choosing drug treatment based on patient’s genotype
March 23, 2019 - First-of-its-kind study provides pregnancy statistics of imprisoned U.S. women
March 23, 2019 - Marinus Pharmaceuticals Initiates Phase 3 Study in Children with PCDH19-Related Epilepsy
March 23, 2019 - Laparoscopy: MedlinePlus Lab Test Information
March 23, 2019 - Shellfish allergies: can they be treated?
March 23, 2019 - Toilet seat heart monitoring system
March 23, 2019 - Researchers identify way to improve common treatment for PTSD
March 23, 2019 - High potency cannabis use linked to psychosis finds study
March 23, 2019 - Evoke Pharma Submits Response to FDA Review Letter for Gimoti NDA
March 23, 2019 - Tracking HIV’s ever-evolving genome in effort to prioritize public health resources
March 23, 2019 - Scientists grow most sophisticated brain organoid to date
March 23, 2019 - ADHD drug raising risk of psychosis
March 22, 2019 - FDA approves brexanolone, first drug developed to treat postpartum depression
March 22, 2019 - Gruesome cat and dog experiments by the USDA exposed
March 22, 2019 - Ball pits used in children’s physical therapy may contribute to germ transmission
March 22, 2019 - Long-term use of inexpensive weight-loss drug may be safe and effective
March 22, 2019 - FDA Approves Sunosi (solriamfetol) for Excessive Daytime Sleepiness Associated with Narcolepsy or Obstructive Sleep Apnea
March 22, 2019 - Anti-Müllerian Hormone Test: MedlinePlus Lab Test Information
March 22, 2019 - Finding the right exercise, diet aids for HIV patients
March 22, 2019 - Health Plans For State Employees Use Medicare’s Hammer On Hospital Bills
March 22, 2019 - Researchers develop new tool for imaging large groups of neurons in living animals
March 22, 2019 - Certain bacteria and immune factors in vagina may cause or protect against preterm birth
March 22, 2019 - Novel breath test could pave new way to non-invasively measure gut health
March 22, 2019 - Pharmaceutical and personal care products may result in new contaminants in waterways
March 22, 2019 - ACC: Catheter Ablation Does Not Cut Mortality, Stroke in A-Fib
March 22, 2019 - Wiedemann-Rautenstrauch syndrome – Genetics Home Reference
March 22, 2019 - Health insurance is not assurance of healthcare
March 22, 2019 - Supporting “curiosity-driven research” at the Discovery Innovation Awards
March 22, 2019 - Must-Reads Of The Week (Some Flying Below The Radar)
March 22, 2019 - Newly engineered nanoscale protein micelles can be tracked by MRI
March 22, 2019 - New model more effective in predicting risk of opioid overdose than traditional models
March 22, 2019 - Mayo Clinic study identifies potential new drug therapy for liver diseases
March 22, 2019 - Pitt engineers win $550,000 NSF CAREER award to develop new intervention for people with ASD
March 22, 2019 - Early discharge does not increase readmission risk for patients after lung surgery
March 22, 2019 - Creating diverse pool of trained scientists to address Alzheimer’s research needs
March 22, 2019 - Surprising discovery offers clues to limit graft-vs.-host disease
March 22, 2019 - Study shows ACA’s positive impact on healthcare affordability and access for women
March 22, 2019 - Study provides new pathway for controlling inflammation
March 22, 2019 - New combination treatment shows promise for common brain tumor in children
March 22, 2019 - Virginia Tech Helmet Lab releases first youth-specific football helmet ratings
March 22, 2019 - New algae-based treatment could reduce need for limb amputation
March 22, 2019 - Stroke risk reduces in both black and white older Medicare beneficiaries, study reports
March 22, 2019 - City of Hope exhibits current studies and data on cancer therapies at AACR
March 22, 2019 - New study identifies CD40 molecule as key entry point for dangerous bacteria
March 22, 2019 - Health Tip: Six Steps to a Healthier Life
March 22, 2019 - even a little activity helps you live longer
March 22, 2019 - Many individuals recovering from addiction continue to suffer from chronic physical disease
March 22, 2019 - New drugs on PBS for Parkinson’s, MND and Cutaneous T cell lymphoma
March 22, 2019 - Saving energy also saves lives, UW-Madison study says
March 22, 2019 - Former inmates who receive social support have better mental health, study finds
March 22, 2019 - Nanofibrous membrane could enhance periodontal tissue regeneration
March 22, 2019 - Anti-vaxxer Italian leader down with chickenpox
March 22, 2019 - Servier collaborates with Harvard researchers to fight metabolic diseases
March 22, 2019 - National Eating Disorders Association
March 22, 2019 - Pumping up red blood cell production
March 22, 2019 - Excessive phosphate fertilizer may hurt plants by altering microbial composition in soil
March 22, 2019 - Medical marijuana laws could be improving older Americans’ health, study suggests
March 22, 2019 - Study indicates the benefits of stopping aspirin in heart attack patients
March 22, 2019 - Deep brain stimulation offers significant relief for patients with treatment-resistant depression
March 22, 2019 - Mental health problems in young adults on the rise
March 22, 2019 - Innovative membrane offers a viable solution for periodontitis
March 22, 2019 - The FDA Grants Rare Pediatric Disease Designation to Odiparcil for the Treatment of MPS VI
March 22, 2019 - insulin therapy: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia
March 22, 2019 - Guidelines on the use of genetic testing in psychiatry
March 22, 2019 - Aspiring Doctors Seek Advanced Training In Addiction Medicine
March 22, 2019 - A change in focus could enable the development of new treatments for Alzheimer’s disease
March 22, 2019 - A new way to visualize the immune cell “landscape” of bowel cancer tumors
March 22, 2019 - Understanding maintenance of quiescent stem cells in chronic myelogenous leukemia
March 22, 2019 - Ludwig scientists to share advances in cancer research at AACR Annual Meeting 2019
March 22, 2019 - Less invasive valve replacement can be safe and effective alternative for healthier patients
March 22, 2019 - Aphasia research reveals new, complex interactions between thought and language
March 22, 2019 - Artificial neural networks can predict how different areas in the brain respond to words
March 22, 2019 - Age-related changes to gut microbiome have adverse impact on vascular health, study shows
March 22, 2019 - Study provides new insight into blood cell and immune cell production
March 22, 2019 - Isolated seniors chat online to prevent cognitive decline
New blood test could spare cancer patients from unnecessary chemotherapy

New blood test could spare cancer patients from unnecessary chemotherapy

image_pdfDownload PDFimage_print

Cancer patients could be spared unnecessary chemotherapy – and its side effects – by a new blood test that is in clinical trials at more than 40 hospitals in Australia and New Zealand.

The trials, led by Melbourne researchers, are investigating whether patients can be assessed after cancer surgery using a simple blood test to determine whether they need chemotherapy or not. Results from the same test could also help to scale the dose for the patients who do need chemotherapy, depending on their risk of cancer returning. Currently many early stage cancer patients who have surgical treatment also receive chemotherapy as a precaution because there is no reliable way to know which patients will have their cancer return after surgery.

In many cases, patients are receiving unnecessary chemotherapy, said the trial lead, Associate Professor Jeanne Tie, who is a clinician scientist at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute and a medical oncologist at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and Western Health.

“While chemotherapy is an essential, life-saving treatment, we don’t want patients receiving it if they don’t need it. We want to help these patients avoid serious and ongoing side-effects associated with chemotherapy,” she said.

Associate Professor Tie said the trials would test whether the ‘circulating tumor DNA (ctDNA) test’ could reliably indicate to an oncologist whether or not a patient needed to start chemotherapy after their cancer had been surgically removed, to give the best chance of preventing recurrence.

“We would like to be able to tell some patients that they can safely avoid chemotherapy because their cancer is unlikely to recur. For patients who are at a high risk of recurrence, we want to be able to give them a more intensive dose of chemotherapy than those with a lower risk of recurrence,” she said.

In the short term, people who are receiving chemotherapy may experience a range of side-effects including pain, fatigue, nausea and other digestive issues, bleeding problems and an increased susceptibility to infection. Long term side-effects of chemotherapy may include heart, lung, nerve and memory problems, and fertility issues.

The ctDNA test looks for fragments of tumor DNA in a patient’s blood after the tumor has been surgically removed. The trial is determining whether the amount of ctDNA in a patient’s blood indicates their risk of relapse – patients at the highest risk can be treated aggressively with chemotherapy, while patients with no detectable ctDNA in their blood are at low risk of cancer recurrence and may not need chemotherapy. The ctDNA blood test was developed through a collaboration between the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute and Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Centre, US.

The trial began in early stage bowel cancer patients in 2015 and has already shown it can determine whether these patients can be divided into ‘high risk’ and ‘low risk’ groups. The trial was extended to women with ovarian cancer in 2017.

The ovarian cancer arm of the trial is led by Walter and Eliza Hall Institute clinician-researcher Associate Professor Sumi Ananda, who is also medical oncologist at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and Western Health.

“We suspect that many women with early stage ovarian cancer can be treated with surgery alone, but we currently treat all these patients as though their cancer may recur, with high dose chemotherapy,” she said.

“Undergoing chemotherapy is a huge imposition on a patient’s life, both because of the side effects patients have to endure, as well as the time the treatment takes. Many of my patients have to stop working, and postpone important parts of their life such as travel, so they can attend their chemotherapy sessions and manage the side effects of the treatment.”

“In the future I hope that we can safely and accurately determine which patients can avoid chemotherapy – for these people it will be a huge improvement on their quality of life. I also hope that by identifying patients with the highest risk of recurrence, we can give them intensive chemotherapy to give them the best chance of survival. This test could be an important step towards personalizing cancer treatment for individual patients,” Associate Professor Ananda said.

Trial participant Professor Hugh McDermott said that receiving a ‘low risk’ ctDNA test result provided him with peace of mind after having surgery for bowel cancer last year.

“The test indicated that my cancer was unlikely to recur, meaning I didn’t need to have chemotherapy,” he said. “Avoiding the potential side-effects and inconvenience of chemotherapy was a huge relief – it meant I could get back to work quickly and continue to enjoy travel and social events. This test could potentially be enormously beneficial not only for patients and their doctors, but also for their family, friends, and carers.”

More than 400 patients have already joined in the trials of the ctDNA test (DYNAMIC), but the lead researchers hope to recruit 2000 participants. More than 40 hospitals across all states in Australia and in New Zealand are participating in the trial, making it one of the largest trials in Australia and internationally to investigate a predictive blood test to guide cancer treatment. The trials are expected to run until 2021 for bowel cancer and 2019 for ovarian cancer.

Source:

https://www.wehi.edu.au/news/cancer-blood-test-trialed-prevent-unnecessary-chemo

About author

Related Articles