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Mikhail M.,Imperial College London | Mekhail Y.,George Washington University | Mekhail T.,Florida Hospital Cancer Institute
Current Oncology Reports | Year: 2012

Thymoma is a unique neoplasm of the anterior mediastinum that is frequently associated with indolent growth and a variety of paraneoplastic syndromes. One third of cases are detected during the evaluation of myasthenia gravis. Classification systems of thymoma have limited ability in accurately predicting prognosis and course of disease. Thus, staging is the only way to predict clinical behavior. Encapsulated tumors that are surgically resected carry the best prognosis. Adjuvant radiotherapy is recommended for incompletely excised and most invasive thymomas. Chemotherapy in anthracyclinebased chemotherapy remains the most effective chemotherapy for neoadjuvant, adjuvant or palliative treatment. © Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012.


Alemany C.,Florida Hospital Cancer Institute
Current oncology reports | Year: 2014

Irinotecan is a very active chemotherapeutic agent used for the treatment of several malignancies, including colorectal cancer, gastroesophageal tumors, lung cancer, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, and primary brain tumors. Irinotecan exerts its antineoplastic effects through its active metabolite 7-ethyl-10-hydroxycamptothecin. This metabolite is also responsible for the classic side effects associated with irinotecan that include diarrhea and neutropenia. A pegylated form of this agent, etirinotecan pegol, is undergoing clinical development with the main goal of increasing its therapeutic efficacy and its safety. This agent decreases the maximal exposure to 7-ethyl-10-hydroxycamptothecin while providing continuous exposure to the treated tumor. The half-life of etirinotecan pegol is 50 days and it has been studied in different schedules: weekly, every other week, and once every 3 weeks. The maximum tolerated dose of etirinotecan pegol was found to be 145 mg/m(2). There have already been two phase II clinical trials published showing the efficacy of this novel agent in the treatment of metastatic ovarian and breast cancer. The side effect profile was acceptable for most patients, with a number of patients experiencing diarrhea and even neutropenia.


Mazzone P.,Cleveland Clinic | Mekhail T.,Florida Hospital Cancer Institute
Respiratory Medicine | Year: 2012

Pulmonary physicians commonly develop relationships with lung cancer patients through the evaluation and staging of the disease prior to the discussion of treatment options with oncologists. Given the relationship that develops, a pulmonologist is often asked about aspects of the treatment plan that may be slightly outside of their comfort zone. The aim of this overview of medical treatment of non-small cell lung cancer is to provide the pulmonologist with an overview of the evidence guiding current practice so that they can be more comfortable answering their patients' questions while awaiting the expert opinion of the oncologist. We discuss standard chemotherapeutic agents, their common side effects, and their use in the adjuvant and neoadjuvant setting, as definitive therapy for locally advanced disease, as palliative therapy for advanced disease, and as maintenance therapy. We also discuss the mechanisms of action and side effects of targeted therapies (including inhibitors of vascular endothelial growth factor [VEGF], epidermal growth factor receptor [EGFR] signaling and the anaplastic lymphoma kinase [ALK] protein), their currently accepted uses, and upcoming phase III trials, the results of which may influence standard practice. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Luszczek W.,Cleveland Clinic | Cheriyath V.,Cleveland Clinic | Mekhail T.M.,Cleveland Clinic | Mekhail T.M.,Florida Hospital Cancer Institute | Borden E.C.,Cleveland Clinic
Molecular Cancer Therapeutics | Year: 2010

Because epigenetic inhibitors can reduce cancer cell proliferation, we tested the hypothesis that concurrent inhibition of histone acetylation and DNA methylation could synergistically reduce the viability of small cell lung cancer (SCLC) cells. Sub-IC50 concentrations of the DNA methyltransferase (DNMT) inhibitor decitabine (5-AZA-dC) and the histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors (LBH589 or MGCD0103) synergistically reduced the proliferation of five of nine SCLC cell lines. Loss of viability of sensitive SCLC cells did not correlate with the inhibition of either DNMT1 or HDACs, suggesting nonepigenetic mechanisms for synergy between these two classes of epigenetic modulators. Because combinations of 5-AZA-dC and HDAC inhibitors had marginal effects on the apoptosis index, Comet assay was undertaken to assess DNA damage. MGCD0103 and 5AZA-dC cotreatment augmented DNA damage in SCLC cells, resulting in increased tail length and moment in Comet assays by 24 hours in sensitive cell lines (P < 0.01). Consistent with augmented DNA damage, combination of a DNMT and HDAC inhibitor markedly increased the levels of phospho-H2A.X in sensitive cells but not in resistant ones. Comparison of basal gene expression between resistant and sensitive cells identified markedly higher basal expression of IFN-stimulated genes in the resistant cell lines, suggesting that IFN-stimulated gene expression may determine SCLC cell sensitivity to epigenetic modulators or other DNA damaging agents. ©2010 AACR.


Marcet J.E.,University of South Florida | Nfonsam V.N.,Arizona Cancer Center | Larach S.,Florida Hospital Cancer Institute
Journal of Pain Research | Year: 2013

Background: Opioid analgesics are effective for postsurgical pain but are associated with opioid-related adverse events, creating a significant clinical and economic burden. Gastrointestinal surgery patients are at high risk for opioid-related adverse events. We conducted a study to assess the impact of an opioid-sparing multimodal analgesia regimen with liposome bupivacaine, compared with the standard of care (intravenous [IV] opioid-based, patient-controlled analgesia [PCA]) on postsurgical opioid use and health economic outcomes in patients undergoing ileostomy reversal. Methods: In this open-label, multicenter study, sequential cohorts of patients undergoing ileostomy reversal received IV opioid PCA (first cohort); or multimodal analgesia including a single intraoperative administration of liposome bupivacaine (second cohort). Rescue analgesia was available to all patients. Primary outcome measures were postsurgical opioid use, hospital length of stay, and hospitalization costs. Incidence of opioid-related adverse events was also assessed. Results: Twenty-seven patients were enrolled, underwent the planned surgery, and did not meet any intraoperative exclusion criteria; 16 received liposome bupivacaine-based multimodal analgesia and eleven received the standard IV opioid PCA regimen. The multimodal regimen was associated with significant reductions in opioid use compared with the IV opioid PCA regimen (mean, 20 mg versus 112 mg; median, 6 mg versus 48 mg, respectively; P<0.01), postsurgical length of stay (median, 3.0 days versus 5.1 days, respectively; P<0.001), and hospitalization costs (geometric mean, $6482 versus $9282, respectively; P = 0.01). Conclusion: A liposome bupivacaine-based multimodal analgesic regimen resulted in statistically significant and clinically meaningful reductions in opioid consumption, shorter length of stay, and lower inpatient costs than an IV opioid-based analgesic regimen. © 2013 Marcet et al, publisher and licensee Dove Medical Press Ltd.

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