The OJC 58: Immune Checkpoint Blockade Efficacy + Treatment of Older Adults

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The Oncology Journal Club Episode 58: Immune Checkpoint Blockade Efficacy + Treatment of Older Adults

Join Eva Segelov, Craig Underhill and Hans Prenen as they chat through the latest papers.

In today’s episode Hans Prenen lives up to the challenge of not covering colorectal cancer! Instead he looks at improved prediction of immune checkpoint blockade efficacy across multiple cancer types. Craig talks us through treatment of older adults with cancer and guidelines to improve trial participation.

You’ll also find out why Eva Segelov has been a little naughty this week.

We’ve quick bites, ‘The Paper That Changed My practice’ segment and the amazing paper of the week.

And listen out for next week’s episode – it’s our OJC Christmas Special featuring the best bloopers of the year plus a surprise guest.

This Week’s Main Papers:

  1. Chowell D, et al. Improved prediction of immune checkpoint blockade efficacy across multiple cancer types. Nat Biotechnol. 2021 Nov 1. doi: 10.1038/s41587-021-01070-8. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34725502. Access online here. 
  2. Bertagnolli MM, et al. Treatment of Older Adults with Cancer – Addressing Gaps in Evidence. N Engl J Med. 2021 Sep 16;385(12):1062-1065. doi: 10.1056/NEJMp2106089. Epub 2021 Sep 11. PMID: 34506087. Access online here.

This Week’s Quick Bites:

  1. Kato, S, et al. Therapeutic Actionability of Circulating Cell-Free DNA Alterations in Carcinoma of Unknown Primary. JCO Precision Oncology 2021 :5, 1687-1698. Access online here.
  2. Arora S, et al. U.S. FDA Drug Approvals for Breast Cancer – A Decade in Review. Clin Cancer Res. 2021 Oct 28:clincanres.2600.2021. doi: 10.1158/1078-0432.CCR-21-2600. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34711632. Access online here.
  3. Kok IC, et al. 89Zr-pembrolizumab imaging as a non-invasive approach to assess clinical response to PD-1 blockade in cancer. Ann Oncol. 2021 Nov 1:S0923-7534(21)04749-9. doi: 10.1016/j.annonc.2021.10.213. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34736925. Access online here.
  4. Butner JD, et al. Early prediction of clinical response to checkpoint inhibitor therapy in human solid tumors through mathematical modeling. Elife. 2021 Nov 9;10:e70130. doi: 10.7554/eLife.70130. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34749885. Access online here.
  5. Zhou SL, et al. Association of KRAS Variant Subtypes With Survival and Recurrence in Patients With Surgically Treated Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma. JAMA Surg. 2021 Nov 3. doi: 10.1001/jamasurg.2021.5679. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34730772. Access online here.
  6. Pagano L, et al. COVID-19 in vaccinated adult patients with hematological malignancies. Preliminary results from EPICOVIDEHA. Blood. 2021 Nov 8:blood.2021014124. doi: 10.1182/blood.2021014124. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34748627; PMCID: PMC8577877. Access online here.
  7. Kratzer TB, et al. Progress Against Cancer Mortality 50 Years After Passage of the National Cancer Act. JAMA Oncol. 2021 Nov 11:e215668. doi: 10.1001/jamaoncol.2021.5668. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34762103; PMCID: PMC8587226. Access online here.
  8. Qian, DC., et al. Effect of immunotherapy time-of-day infusion on overall survival among patients with advanced melanoma in the USA (MEMOIR): a propensity score-matched analysis of a single-centre, longitudinal study. The Lancet. November 12, 2021DOI:
  9. Singh H, et al. Immunotherapy for Patients With Small-Cell Lung Cancer-2 Gains, 2 Losses. JAMA Oncol. 2021 Oct 28. doi: 10.1001/jamaoncol.2021.4956. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 34709353. Access online here.

Amazing Article of the Week:

Miller AS, Cahill S. Blood Donation by Gay and Bisexual Men – The Need for a Policy Update. N Engl J Med. 2021 Oct 21;385(17):1537-1539. doi: 10.1056/NEJMp2112329. Epub 2021 Oct 16. PMID: 34652082. Access online here.

The Paper That Changed My Practice

Menzies AM, et al. Pathological response and survival with neoadjuvant therapy in melanoma: a pooled analysis from the International Neoadjuvant Melanoma Consortium (INMC). Nat Med. 2021 Feb;27(2):301-309. doi: 10.1038/s41591-020-01188-3. Epub 2021 Feb 8. PMID: 33558722. Access online here.

This Week’s Team:

Professor Eva Segelov

Eva Segelov

Professor Eva Segelov is a Medical Oncologist and is Director of Oncology at Monash University and Monash Health, Melbourne, Victoria, previously Senior Medical Oncologist at St Vincent’s Hospital, St Vincent’s Private Hospital and St Vincent’s Clinic and Associate Professor of Medicine, University of New South Wales.

Eva has an interest in academic clinical trials in GI and breast cancer and has been a member of the AGITG since 2003. She has clinical trials expertise, links with national and international trials groups, and extensive experience with adult medical education. You can find Eva on Twitter here: @profevasegelov

Professor Hans Prenen

Hans Prenen

Professor Hans Prenen is a medical oncologist and head of the phase 1 – early clinical trials unit at the Antwerp University Hospital in Belgium. He is a member of several scientific organisations, published many scientific oncology papers in prestigious journals and is regularly invited for lectures at national and international meetings.  His interests are clinical trials and translational research with a focus on digestive oncology. You can find Hans on Twitter here: @HPrenen


Associate Professor Craig Underhill

Craig Underhill

Associate Professor Craig Underhill completed his Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery in 1987 at Melbourne University. He completed medical oncology training in Melbourne and worked as the Senior Clinical Research Registrar at Guy’s Hospital, London.

In 1998 arrived in Albury-Wodonga and established a medical oncology practice and clinical trials unit which has developed expertise and infrastructure to ensure the initiation of high quality trials. The research Unit lead by Dr Underhill has twice been awarded NSW Premier’s Award for Innovation in Cancer Clinical Trials, the inaugural award in 2009 and then again in 2012.

Dr Underhill is the VCCC Regional Oncology Lead and advocates for the increased access to clinical trials for regional Victorians and leads the VCCC teletrials program. You can find Craig on Twitter here: @CraigUnderhill 

Dr Julia Lai-Kwon

Dr Julia Lai-Kwon is an early career medical oncologist and health services researcher.  She is the current Medical Oncology Fellow at the Melanoma Institute Australia and has previously trained at Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre and the Royal Marsden Hospital.  Her clinical interests are melanoma and other cutaneous malignancies, while her research focuses on survivorship issues facing people with metastatic cancers and the use of patient-reported outcomes in research and routine care.  She is actively involved in medical education and has designed and delivered content for the Masters of Cancer Sciences at the University of Melbourne and VCCC Alliance.  Dr Lai-Kwon is a current committee member of the Young Oncologist Group of Australia (YOGA) and the EORTC Quality of Life Group’s Early Career Investigator Group.

You can find Julia on Twitter here: @julialaikwon

Rachael Babin

Rachael Babin is Editor-in-Chief of The Oncology Newsletter, Publisher of Oncology News Host of The Oncology Podcast and Producer of The Oncology Journal Club. For regular oncology updates for healthcare professionals, please subscribe to The Oncology Newsletter.

With thanks to Eva Segelov, Craig Underhill, Hans Prenen, Nicola O’Neil and Graham Knowles.

Connect with us on Twitter @OncologyNewsAus


About Author

The ONA Editor curates oncology news, views and reviews from Australia and around the world for our readers. In aggregated content, original sources will be acknowledged in the article footer.

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