Cardiac Risk Substantially Lower with Enzalutamide Than Abiraterone

Using the world’s largest pharmacovigilance database, Eugene B. Cone, MD, Quoc-Dien Trinh, MD, and colleagues determined the risk of cardiac adverse events is increased substantially with abiraterone and not at all with enzalutamide.

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Polypharmacy in Older Adults Not Associated with Post-Thoracic Surgery Complications

Close up of senior woman holding a medicine box and taking out a pill

A retrospective study at the Brigham, led by Lisa Cooper, MD, and Laura N. Frain, MD, MPH, found that polypharmacy, potentially inappropriate medications, and frailty were not associated with complications after surgery for thoracic malignancies, but frailty was associated with increased length of hospital stay.

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Expanding the Role for Metastasectomy in Advanced-Stage Melanoma

Historically, stage 4 melanoma was considered incurable. In these cases, metastasectomy was performed for only as a palliative measure. But with recent advancements in systemic therapy, metastasectomy has emerged as an effective tool for extending the period of disease control and enhancing overall treatment response. Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center is at the forefront of this transformation.

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Study Reveals How Cancer Cells Hijack Mitochondria From Immune Cells

 

By taking the brakes off the immune system and allowing it to attack cancer cells, checkpoint inhibitors have spurred significant advances in the treatment of many people with cancer over the past decade. But for patients who do not respond to these drugs — still the majority of people with cancer — alternative interventions are needed.

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Cost-Effectiveness of Surgery for Spinal Metastases Depends on Patient Population Characteristics

Andrew J. Schoenfeld, MD, orthopedic surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Elena Losina, PhD, co-director of the Brigham’s OrACORe, and colleagues conducted the first cost-effectiveness analysis of surgery for spinal metastases that accounts for ambulatory function at presentation.

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Trial Evaluates Novel Blood Test for Immediate Ovarian Cancer Risk

young woman getting blood drawn

Investigators at Brigham and Women’s Hospital have a clinical trial underway to evaluate the utility and efficacy of a novel blood test that screens women for ovarian cancer risk. Led by Kevin Elias, MD, of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, the trial aims to enroll 500 women who are estimated to be at increased risk of developing the disease due to a family history of cancer or a known mutation in BRCA1, BRCA2 or another gene linked to ovarian cancer.

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Approach Targets Macrophages in BRCA-Linked Breast Cancer

close up of cells
A cyclic immunofluorescence image of triple-negative breast cancer tissue. Shown are tumor cells (Keratin, white), macrophages (CD163, green; CD68, cyan), T cells (red) and nuclei (blue).

PARP inhibitors have become an important part of the arsenal for treating cancers caused by BRCA mutations — including breast cancer. Recently, clinical trials have begun looking at the combination of PARP inhibitors and immune checkpoint inhibitors in breast cancer, with the goal of making treatment more effective and longer lasting.

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Studying New Approaches for Immunotherapy in Renal Cancer

illustration of organ

Immunotherapy with checkpoint inhibitor drugs is an emerging treatment for renal cell carcinoma. Now investigators from Brigham and Women’s Hospital have reported the results from lab research looking at a potential new way to boost the immune system’s ability to fight cancer.

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Preventing Cancer-Associated Thrombosis

Blood clot in the superior vena cava
Blood clot in the superior vena cava associated with a central venous catheter in a 32-year-old woman with Lynch syndrome and advanced colon cancer.

Today’s cancer therapies are helping patients live longer. However, treatments including surgery, radiation, chemotherapy and certain targeted and immunological therapies increase the risk of developing cancer-associated thrombosis (CAT). Physicians at Brigham and Women’s Hospital’s Heart & Vascular Center are working with colleagues at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) to help prevent CAT and minimize its effect on timely cancer care.

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Taking Tumor Boards to the Next Level

Tumor board meeting

While traditional tumor boards are common at most academic medical centers, Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women’s Cancer Center (DF/BWCC) has taken its 10-year-old tumor board to the next level by integrating molecular pathology into their discussions.

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