December 2016, Vol. 5, No. 10

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Reflections on Personalizing Oncology Care in 2016

Letter to Our Readers

Dear Colleague,

Untitled-17As the close of 2016 approaches and we look forward to the year ahead, I would like to thank you, our Personalized Medicine in Oncology (PMO) reading community, for your support, contributions, and loyal readership. In our pages and on our website, we have offered the best in research, opinions, and practices that have forever improved our ability to personalize care for our patients. Personalizing treatments has become the expectation for patients and has indeed become an indispensable service to ensure the best possible outcomes. The successes we report related to our ability to use personalized genetic and/or genomic information about patient or tumor have affected the very culture of oncology care at every phase from prevention through survivorship. As a result, we are seeing improvements in quality of life and survival.

In this issue, we feature an interview with Roni Zeiger of Smart Patients about the creation of online health communities and the untapped potential in connecting—and ultimately empowering—patients.

Much debate has taken place over optimal treatment options for patients with BRAF-mutated melanoma, but what about our patients with wild-type BRAF? We are pleased to present a paper from Drs Rahman and Tarhini about treatment options for patients with wild-type BRAF melanoma.

In this age of personalized medicine, there is much discussion about the role of the pathologist on the multidisciplinary oncology team. To elaborate on the topic, we invited Drs Washington and Salaria to contribute a paper exploring the role of the pathologist beyond their traditional roles in cancer diagnosis and staging as well as to clarify the importance of the pathologist in the era of personalized medicine.

Our editorial board member, Cristi Radford, provides an insightful column on BRCA testing for adolescents in her Genetic Counseling department.

2016 has been a great year for us, and it is my pleasure to serve you as Editor in Chief of PMO. My very best to you this holiday season and in the New Year.

Sincerely,

Al B. Benson III, MD, FACP, FASCO
Editor in Chief
Personalized Medicine in Oncology

Association for Value-Based Cancer Care - December 9, 2016

Maximizing the Potential of Immunotherapy Is the Focus of Cancer Moonshot 2020

The Cancer Moonshot 2020 Program is exploring a new paradigm in cancer care by bringing clinical trials focused on immunotherapy to community and academic practices. This privately funded initiative seeks to conduct phase 2 clinical trials within the next 36 months in 20,000 patients with >20 tumor types at all [ Read More ]

Genetic Counseling - December 9, 2016

Is It Time to Reconsider Testing Adolescents for Familial BRCA Mutations?

Parents with inherited cancer mutations often wonder when to disclose results to their children and what affect it will have on them. A recent study examined the impact of a family history of breast cancer or a familial BRCA1/2 mutation on girls aged 11 to 19 years.1 The study included [ Read More ]