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Sassowsky M.,University of Bern | Holscher T.,University Hospital Dresden | Hildebrandt G.,University of Rostock | Muller A.-C.,University of Tubingen | And 13 more authors.
International Journal of Radiation Oncology Biology Physics | Year: 2013

Purpose Different international target volume delineation guidelines exist and different treatment techniques are available for salvage radiation therapy (RT) for recurrent prostate cancer, but less is known regarding their respective applicability in clinical practice. Methods and Materials A randomized phase III trial testing 64 Gy vs 70 Gy salvage RT was accompanied by an intense quality assurance program including a site-specific and study-specific questionnaire and a dummy run (DR). Target volume delineation was performed according to the European Organisation for the Research and Treatment of Cancer guidelines, and a DR-based treatment plan was established for 70 Gy. Major and minor protocol deviations were noted, interobserver agreement of delineated target contours was assessed, and dose-volume histogram (DVH) parameters of different treatment techniques were compared. Results Thirty European centers participated, 43% of which were using 3-dimensional conformal RT (3D-CRT), with the remaining centers using intensity modulated RT (IMRT) or volumetric modulated arc technique (VMAT). The first submitted version of the DR contained major deviations in 21 of 30 (70%) centers, mostly caused by inappropriately defined or lack of prostate bed (PB). All but 5 centers completed the DR successfully with their second submitted version. The interobserver agreement of the PB was moderate and was improved by the DR review, as indicated by an increased κ value (0.59 vs 0.55), mean sensitivity (0.64 vs 0.58), volume of total agreement (3.9 vs 3.3 cm3), and decrease in the union volume (79.3 vs 84.2 cm3). Rectal and bladder wall DVH parameters of IMRT and VMAT vs 3D-CRT plans were not significantly different. Conclusions The interobserver agreement of PB delineation was moderate but was improved by the DR. Major deviations could be identified for the majority of centers. The DR has improved the acquaintance of the participating centers with the trial protocol. © 2013 Elsevier Inc. Source

Del Campo J.M.,University of Barcelona | Sessa C.,Istituto Oncologico Della Svizzera Italiana | Krasner C.N.,Massachusetts General Hospital | Vermorken J.B.,University of Antwerp | And 8 more authors.
Medical Oncology | Year: 2013

Three phase II studies evaluated trabectedin monotherapy as second-/third-line therapy in patients with refractory/recurrent ovarian cancer (ROC). Three different schedules were investigated: 3-h infusion every 3 weeks (3-h-q3w), 24-h infusion q3w (24-h-q3w), and 3-h weekly infusion for 3 weeks of a 4-week cycle. This retrospective pooled analysis evaluated the efficacy and the safety profile of trabectedin according to each administered regimen. Data from 295 patients were used to compare weekly versus q3w schedules, and 3-h versus 24-h infusion given q3w. Both q3w regimens showed higher overall response rate (36 vs. 16 %; p = 0.0001), disease control rate (66 vs. 46 %; p = 0.0007), and longer median progression-free survival (5.6 vs. 2.8 months; p < 0.0001) than the weekly schedule. Comparable activity was observed for the 3- and 24-h infusions q3w. Common adverse events were nausea, fatigue, vomiting, transient neutropenia, and transaminase increases. A better safety profile regarding neutropenia, fatigue, and vomiting was seen for the 3-h-q3w regimen as compared to the 24-h-q3w one. Trabectedin given as a single agent q3w as 3-h infusion is the schedule of choice for the treatment of ROC, and its efficacy and safety profile favorably compares with other active salvage treatments. © 2013 Springer Science+Business Media New York. Source

Hitz F.,Kantonsspital St. Gallen | Fischer N.,Kantonsspital | Pabst Th.,Inselspital Bern | Caspar C.,Kantonsspital Baden | And 5 more authors.
Annals of Hematology | Year: 2013

This phase I trial was designed to develop a new effective and well-tolerated regimen for patients with aggressive B cell lymphoma not eligible for front-line anthracycline-based chemotherapy or aggressive second-line treatment strategies. The combination of rituximab (375 mg/m2 on day 1), bendamustine (70 mg/m2 on days 1 and 2), and lenalidomide was tested with a dose escalation of lenalidomide at three dose levels (10, 15, or 20 mg/day) using a 3 + 3 design. Courses were repeated every 4 weeks. The recommended dose was defined as one level below the dose level identifying ≥2/6 patients with a dose-limiting toxicity (DLT) during the first cycle. Thirteen patients were eligible for analysis. Median age was 77 years. WHO performance status was 0 or 1 in 12 patients. The Charlson Comorbidity Index showed relevant comorbidities in all patients. Two DLTs occurred at the second dose level (15 mg/day) within the first cycle: one patient had prolonged grade 3 neutropenia, and one patient experienced grade 4 cardiac adverse event (myocardial infarction). Additional grade 3 and 4 toxicities were as follows: neutropenia (31 %), thrombocytopenia (23 %), cardiac toxicity (31 %), fatigue (15 %), and rash (15 %). The dose of lenalidomide of 10 mg/day was recommended for a subsequent phase II in combination with rituximab 375 mg/m2 on day 1 and bendamustine 70 mg/m2 on days 1 and 2. © 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Passweg J.R.,University of Basel | Pabst T.,Inselspital | Blum S.,CHUV | Li Q.,Coordinating Center | And 7 more authors.
Leukemia and Lymphoma | Year: 2014

This phase II trial treated elderly or frail patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) with single-agent subcutaneous azacytidine at 100 mg/m 2, on 5 of 28 days for up to six cycles. Treatment was stopped for lack of response, or continued to progression in responders. The primary endpoint was response within 6 months. A response rate ≥ 34% was considered a positive trial outcome. From September 2008 to April 2010, 45 patients from 10 centers (median age 74 [55-86] years) were accrued. Patients received four (1-21) cycles. Best response was complete response/complete response with incomplete recovery of neutrophils and/or platelets (CR/CRi) in eight (18%; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 8-32%.), 0 (0%) partial response (PR), seven (16%) hematologic improvement, 17 (38%) stable disease. Three non-responding patients stopped treatment after six cycles, 31 patients stopped early and 11 patients continued treatment for 8-21 cycles. Adverse events (grade ≥ III) were infections (n = 13), febrile neutropenia (n = 8), thrombocytopenia (n = 7), dyspnea (p = 6), bleeding (n = 5) and anemia (n = 4). Median overall survival was 6 months. Peripheral blood blast counts, grouped at 30%, had a borderline significant association with response (p = 0.07). This modified azacytidine schedule is feasible for elderly or frail patients with AML in an outpatient setting with moderate, mainly hematologic, toxicity and response in a proportion of patients, although the primary objective was not reached. © 2013 Informa UK, Ltd. Source

Popescu R.A.,Hirslanden Medical Center | Schafer R.,European Society for Medical Oncology | Califano R.,The Christie NHS Foundation Trust | Califano R.,University of Manchester | And 18 more authors.
Annals of Oncology | Year: 2014

The number of cancer patients in Europe is rising and significant advances in basic and applied cancer research are making the provision of optimal care more challenging. The concept of cancer as a systemic, highly heterogeneous and complex disease has increased the awareness that quality cancer care should be provided by a multidisciplinary team (MDT) of highly qualified healthcare professionals. Cancer patients also have the right to benefit from medical progress by receiving optimal treatment from adequately trained and highly skilled medical professionals. Built on the highest standards of professional training and continuing medical education, medical oncology is recognised as an independent medical specialty in many European countries. Medical oncology is a core member of the MDT and offers cancer patients a comprehensive and systemic approach to treatment and care, while ensuring evidence-based, safe and cost-effective use of cancer drugs and preserving the quality of life of cancer patients through the entire 'cancer journey'. Medical oncologists are also engaged in clinical and translational research to promote innovation and new therapies and they contribute to cancer diagnosis, prevention and research, making a difference for patients in a dynamic, stimulating professional environment. Medical oncologists play an important role in shaping the future of healthcare through innovation and are also actively involved at the political level to ensure a maximum contribution of the profession to Society and to tackle future challenges. This position paper summarises the multifarious and vital contributions of medical oncology and medical oncologists to today's and tomorrow's professional cancer care.© The Author 2013.Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Society for Medical Oncology. All rights reserved. Source

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