Tag Archives: ASCO 2009

ASCO Research Highlights: Molecular Markers in Stage II and III Colon Cancer

Several studies presented at ASCO looked a biomarkers that might predict cancer recurrence or patient survival in stage II and III colon cancer and whether patients could be chosen to receive chemotherapy based on those markers.  Of special interest was the hypothesis offered by two researchers from the PETACC-3 clinical trial that stage II and stage III may be very different biologically.  As Dr. Arnaud Roth said, “. . .in other words, could be different diseases.”

Primary Colorectal Tumors Can Be Safely Left in Place

When cancer has spread beyond the colon or rectum, the primary colorectal tumor can safely be left in place with only rare complications. Surgeons at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York followed 233 patients who began chemotherapy without surgery to remove their primary colon or rectal tumor. Almost 90 percent never had a problem with their tumor that needed intervention with surgery, radiation, or a stent. Only 7 percent required emergency surgery.

Fun and Footsore at ASCO

When I finally got on the big bus yesterday from my hotel to the Orange County Convention Center where the ASCO meeting is being held, I realized how excited I was, how much this annual event is looked forward to by doctors and patients alike. Will there be a blockbuster new drug this year for colorectal cancer?  A big biomarker like KRAS was last year?  New directions in surgery? Radiation?

Ginger Helps Relieve Chemo Nausea

Adding ginger capsules to standard treatment for chemotherapy nausea reduced nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy. Patients who got ginger (Zingiber Officinale) in capsules twice a day for three days before chemo and three days after reported significantly less nausea that those who were treated with placebo.  All patients in the study also received standard anti-nausea therapy on the day of chemo. Almost 650 patients, mostly women, were randomly assigned to ginger supplements or a placebo in a blinded trial that will be reported at the 2009 ASCO annual meeting.

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