Cancers2015, 7(3), 1191-1214; doi:10.3390/cancers7030833 (registering DOI) - published 3 July 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Defining optimal adjuvant treatment for older women with breast cancer is challenged by the lack of level-1 clinical evidence and the heterogeneity of the older population. Nevertheless, recommendations based on reviews of available evidence mainly from retrospective subgroup analyses and extrapolation of study results from younger patients, and expert opinions, may be useful to guide treatment decisions in fit patients. But how can we properly define a “fit” older patient? In clinical practice, age by itself and clinical impression generally drive treatment decision, although the appropriateness of this judgment is under-documented. Such an approach risks overtreatment or, more frequently, undertreatment. A geriatric assessment can be valuable in oncology practice to address this issue. In this review article, we will focus only on systemic treatment and will discuss “standard” adjuvant systemic treatment strategies for fit older breast cancer patients and the role of “personalized” systemic therapy in unfit patients. The concepts conveyed in this review cannot be extrapolated to locoregional therapy.
Cancers2015, 7(3), 1178-1190; doi:10.3390/cancers7030831 (registering DOI) - published 2 July 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Lung cancer is the leading cancer cause of death in the United States. Radiotherapy is an essential component of the definitive treatment of early-stage and locally-advanced lung cancer, and the palliative treatment of metastatic lung cancer. Proton beam therapy (PBT), through its characteristic Bragg peak, has the potential to decrease the toxicity of radiotherapy, and, subsequently improve the therapeutic ratio. Herein, we provide a primer on the physics of proton beam therapy for lung cancer, present the existing data in early-stage and locally-advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC), as well as in special situations such as re-irradiation and post-operative radiation therapy. We then present the technical challenges, such as anatomic changes and motion management, and future directions for PBT in lung cancer, including pencil beam scanning.
Abstract: The incidence of melanoma has been increasing at a rapid rate, with 4%–11% of all melanoma recurrences presenting as in-transit disease. Treatments for in-transit melanoma of the extremity are varied and include surgical excision, lesional injection, regional techniques and systemic therapies. Excision to clear margins is preferred; however, in cases of widespread disease, this may not be practical. Historically, intralesional therapies were generally not curative and were often used for palliation or as adjuncts to other therapies, but recent advances in oncolytic viruses may change this paradigm. Radiation as a regional therapy can be quite locally toxic and is typically relegated to disease control and symptom relief in patients with limited treatment options. Regional therapies such as isolated limb perfusion and isolated limb infusion are older therapies, but offer the ability to treat bulky disease for curative intent with a high response rate. These techniques have their associated toxicities and can be technically challenging. Historically, systemic therapy with chemotherapies and biochemotherapies were relatively ineffective and highly toxic. With the advent of novel immunotherapeutic and targeted small molecule agents for the treatment of metastatic melanoma, the armamentarium against in-transit disease has expanded. Given the multitude of options, many different combinations and sequences of therapies can be offered to patients with in-transit extremity melanoma in the contemporary era. Reported response and survival rates of the varied treatments may offer valuable information regarding treatment decisions for patients with in-transit melanoma and provide rationale for these decisions.
Abstract: Movement of tumours, mostly by respiration, has been a major problem for treating lung cancer, liver tumours and other locations in the abdomen and thorax. Organ motion is indeed one component of geometrical uncertainties that includes delineation and target definition uncertainties, microscopic disease and setup errors. At present, minimising motion seems to be the easiest to implement in clinical practice. If combined with adaptive approaches to correct for gradual anatomical variations, it may be a practical strategy. Other approaches such as repainting and tracking could increase the accuracy of proton therapy delivery, but advanced 4D solutions are needed. Moreover, there is a need to perform clinical studies to investigate which approach is the best in a given clinical situation. The good news is that existing and emerging technology and treatment planning systems as will without doubt lead in the forthcoming future to practical solutions to tackle intra-fraction motion in proton therapy. These developments may also improve motion management in photon therapy as well.
Abstract: Epidemiological studies provide strong evidence that obesity and the associated adipose tissue inflammation are risk factors for breast cancer; however, the molecular mechanisms are poorly understood. We evaluated the effect of a high-fat/high-calorie diet on mammary carcinogenesis in the immunocompetent MMTV-PyMT murine model. Four-week old female mice (20/group) were randomized to receive either a high-fat (HF; 60% kcal as fat) or a low-fat (LF; 16% kcal) diet for eight weeks. Body weights were determined, and tumor volumes measured by ultrasound, each week. At necropsy, the tumors and abdominal visceral fat were weighed and plasma collected. The primary mammary tumors, adjacent mammary fat, and lungs were preserved for histological and immunohistochemical examination and quantification of infiltrating macrophages, crown-like structure (CLS) formation, and microvessel density. The body weight gains, visceral fat weights, the primary mammary tumor growth rates and terminal weights, were all significantly greater in the HF-fed mice. Adipose tissue inflammation in the HF group was indicated by hepatic steatosis, pronounced macrophage infiltration and CLS formation, and elevations in plasma monocyte chemoattractant protein-1 (MCP-1), leptin and proinflammatory cytokine concentrations. HF intake was also associated with higher tumor-associated microvascular density and the proangiogenic factor MCP-1. This study provides preclinical evidence in a spontaneous model of breast cancer that mammary adipose tissue inflammation induced by diet, enhances the recruitment of macrophages and increases tumor vascular density suggesting a role for obesity in creating a microenvironment favorable for angiogenesis in the progression of breast cancer.
Abstract: Differences in levels of inflammation-modulating cytokines and adipokines in patients with premalignant oral lesions versus in patients that develop squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (HNSCC) were assessed. Also assessed was the impact of treating HNSCC patients with the immune regulatory mediator, 1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 [1,25(OH)2D3], on modulators of inflammation. Compared to healthy controls, patients with premalignant oral lesions had increases in their systemic levels of the inflammatory cytokines IL-6 and IL-17, and increases in the adipokine, leptin. However, levels of these pro-inflammatory cytokines and adipokine were reduced in patients with HNSCC. Treatment of HNSCC patients with 1,25(OH)2D3 increased levels of each of the measured immune mediators. Levels of the anti-inflammatory adipokine, adiponectin, were shifted inversely with the levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokines and with leptin. These studies demonstrate heightened immune reactivity in patients with premalignant lesions, which wanes in patients with HNSCC, but which is restored by treatment with 1,25(OH)2D3.