The Oncology Journal Club Episode 8

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Today’s jam-packed episode includes an in-depth review of five key papers – an eclectic mix covering employment outcomes, extrachromosomal DNA, COVID-19 and RAF Inhibitors.

We also have Quick Bites on medicinal cannabis and a quirky paper that concluded Japanese men with esophageal cancer had better outcomes if they have wives. We also have a special segment on Regional and Rural Practice with Craig Underhill with a surprise appearance by his esteemed colleagues Sabe Sabesan and Rob Zielinski.

With top quality banter, papers you won’t hear of anywhere else and expert analysis from our Hosts, you are in for another great episode of The Oncology Journal Club!

We have taken an old concept and updated it with a new format. In each episode a team of expert contributors will review topical journal papers and interview special guests who are leaders in their fields to help keep you informed of the latest developments on the go.

With The Oncology Podcast – and The Oncology Journal Club in particular – we are aiming to deliver oncology news differently,” Rachael Babin, Editor-in-Chief, Oncology News.

Today’s episode is hosted by Professor Eva Segelov, from Monash University. Eva is joined by Dr Craig Underhill from Albury-Wodonga and Professor Hans Prenen from Antwerp, Belgium. We hope you enjoy listening and find this a valuable and entertaining resource. Please let us know what you think!

This Week’s Papers:

Main Papers:

  1. de Moor, Janet S. et al. Employment Outcomes among Cancer Survivors in the United States: Implications for Cancer Care Delivery. JNCI: Journal of the National Cancer Institute, djaa084. Access online here.
  2. Bailey, C et al. Extrachromosomal DNA – relieving heredity constraints, accelerating tumour evolution. Annals of Oncology.  Vol 31, Issue 7, P884-893, July 1, 2020. Access online here.
  3. Robilotti, Elizabeth V. et al. Determinants of COVID-19 disease severity in patients with cancer. Nat Med (2020). Access online here.
  4. Xue, Jenny Y. et al. Quest for Clinically Effective RAF Dimer Inhibitors.  Journal of Clinical Oncology 38, no. 19 (July 01, 2020) 2197-2200. Access online here.
  5. Desai, Jayesh et al. Phase I, Open-Label, Dose-Escalation/Dose-Expansion Study of Lifirafenib (BGB-283), an RAF Family Kinase Inhibitor, in Patients With Solid Tumors. Journal of Clinical Oncology 38, no. 19 (July 01, 2020) 2140-2150. Access online here.

Guest Interview:

In today’s episode we have a very special group interview on Regional and Rural Practice with Craig Underhill, Sabe Sabesan and Rob Zielinski. Amongst other things, they discuss the following papers:

  1. Levit, Laura A. et al. Closing the Rural Cancer Care Gap: Three Institutional Approaches. JCO Oncology Practice. Published online June 23, 2020. Access online here.
  2. O’Sullivan B, Let al. Framework for Improving Governance and Quality of Rural Oncology Outreach Services. JCO Oncol Pract. 2020;16(7):e630-e635. doi:10.1200/JOP.19.00318. Access online here.

Quick Bites:

  1. Fernandes Neto, João M. et al. Multiple Low Dose Therapy as an Effective Strategy to Treat EGFR Inhibitor-Resistant NSCLC Tumours. Nat Commun. 2020;11(1):3157. Published 2020 Jun 22. Access online here.
  2. Serna G, et al. Fusobacterium nucleatum persistence and risk of recurrence after preoperative treatment in locally advanced rectal cancer [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jun 19]. Ann Oncol. 2020;S0923-7534(20)39890-2. Access online here.
  3. Lee SH, et al. Efficacy and Safety of Ursodeoxycholic Acid for the Prevention of Gallstone Formation After Gastrectomy in Patients With Gastric Cancer: The PEGASUS-D Randomized Clinical Trial [published online ahead of print, 2020 Jun 17]. JAMA Surg. 2020;e201501. Access online here.
  4. Harding, Anne. One in Four Cancer Patients Reports Using Medical Cannabis – Medscape – Jun 22, 2020. Access online here.
  5. Yoshida N, et al. Wives as Key Persons Positively Impacting Prognosis for Male Patients Undergoing Esophagectomy for Esophageal Cancer: A Retrospective Study from a Single Japanese Institute. Ann Surg Oncol. 2020;27(7):2402-2411. Access online here.

FDA Update:

FDA approves combination of pertuzumab, trastuzumab, and hyaluronidase-zzxf for HER2-positive breast cancer. Content current as of: 

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.

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.


Dr Craig Underhill

Craig Underhill

Dr 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 chaired a working party that was instrumental in securing $65 million in federal funding for The Albury Wodonga Regional Cancer Centre which opened in September 2016.

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.

Sabe Sabesan

Sabe Sabesan

Dr Sabe Sabesan is the Clinical Dean of the Townsville Regional Medical Training network incorporating the Townsville Hospital and Health Services and the Townsville Clinical School of the James Cook University and the director of the department of Medical oncology at the Townsville Cancer Centre, Townsville Hospital.

He is a nationally and internationally recognised expert in the area of teleoncology and developed and evaluated various teleoncology models of care to deliver rural cancer care closer to home including the Queensland Remote Chemotherapy Supervision (QReCS) model.

To enhance rural and regional access to clinical trials, he developed the Australasian Teletrial Model under the auspices of the Clinical Oncology Society of Australia in collaboration with national stakeholders. He is the program lead for the Tropical Centre for Telehealth Practice and Research, a joint initiative between the Townsville hospital and the AITHM.

Rob Zielinski

Rob Zielinski

Dr Rob Zielinski is a medical oncology currently practicing in regional NSW at the Central West Cancer Care Centre, Orange NSW.

Rob’s sub-specialty interests are in genitourinary, skin, brain and lung malignancies but he remains a general oncologist at heart. Rob’s passion is improving the disparity in cancer outcomes between rural and metropolitan patients and has a particular passion for opening up clinical trials to rural patients.

Rob is the Director of the Clinical Trials Unit which received the NSW Premiers Award for Outstanding NSW Trials Unit 2017. He is also deputy chair of the Regional and Rural Cancer COSA committee and would strongly encourage and support cancer professionals to start a career in the country.

Rachael Babin

Rachael Babin

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

With thanks to Eva Segelov, Craig Underhill, Hans Prenen, Sabe Sabesan, Rob Zielinski and Graham Knowles.


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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