Presidential Perspective: Council Update

Dear IGCS Member,

The IGCS Council recently met in Vienna to continue moving the Society’s agenda forward. I am very grateful to the Council and IGCS staff for their commitment, willingness to work, and experience as we discussed an increasing number of prominent issues facing our Society as it evolves to better meet the needs of you, our members, and the patients you serve.

Hopefully, you are aware that we have been intensely focused on building partnerships and creating opportunities to truly internationalize the IGCS so that we can take our place as the one true global resource for all who are dedicated to improving outcomes for women with gynecological malignancies.

Below, I have summarized the main agenda items discussed during the Council Meeting. As you continue reading, the increased activity and growth of the Society over the last eighteen months will hopefully become apparent.

Education & Training
The pillar of our Society, education, continues to be at the core of our business. In the weeks that have passed since the Council made the decision to begin hosting an annual meeting, we have discussed marketing and promotion strategies and approved the name of our annual meeting which will be officially referred to asThe Global Meeting of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society. They also approved restructuring the scientific committees responsible for the content of these annual meetings to ensure global representation, thereby allowing these meeting to be truly international in both content and representation.

The Council approved a new and enhanced method for future site selections based on a wide range of predetermined criteria, each of which will be scored to ensure a completely objective process. The Council also agreed that an essential component to the success of our annual meetings is to establish key strategic partnerships with regional and national societies.

Finally, the regions where we hope to hold The Global Meeting of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society have been penciled in for the next 6 years, so we can begin planning and establishing partnerships within each region. The Council approved a rotation that includes four regions: 1.) Europe, 2.) the “Americas”, 3.) Asia /Oceania, and 4.) Africa/the Middle East. We are confident this rotation will allow us opportunities to reach the many interested members who wish to host an IGCS Annual Global Meeting in their region.

Over the last year, we have also streamlined the process in which IGCS supports national society meetings – usually by providing speakers or financial contributions. For 2018, the Council approved to support meetings and programs that will foster further growth and enhance our ability to make an impact around the world. IGCS will support Latin America and their local societies, Morocco and the newly formed PARSGO, Belarus as they initiate regional screening programs and work to manage patients with abnormalities, and Thailand which has a significant number of women with gynecologic malignancies. We are also excited to collaborate with the FIGO Gynecologic Cancer Committee during their biennial meeting in the autumn of 2018 as well as the Gynecologic Cancer Inter Group (GCIG) as they move to educate low resource regions about clinical trials.

The Council was updated on our upcoming meeting to be held September 14-16, 2018 in Kyoto, Japan. We continue to be grateful to Dr. Keiichi Fujiwara for an amazing amount of work on behalf of the IGCS and to Dr. Aikou Okamoto, our Council Member, who is working equally hard for the Japanese Society of Gynecologic Oncology to ensure innovative scientific content and a successful educational collaboration between the societies.

Initiated over eighteen months ago, our Global Curriculum and Mentorship Program has been successful in many ways. We are reaching parts of the globe that have never had formal and structured gynecologic oncology training programs, also allowing for many IGCS members to provide mentorship and guidance to the trainees.

We have confirmed pilot sites for 2018 in Zambia, Liberia, Uganda, Guatemala, Fiji, and the Caribbean. The current pilot site programs are continuing according to plan and we are looking ahead to the first examinations in mid-2018 in Ethiopia. To this end, we have established an Examination Committee which I will chair, to be responsible to the Education Committee for the conduct and standardization of these examinations. Once again, we must thank Drs. Linus Chuang, Joe Ng, Tom Randall and the incredibly hard-working Chair of our Education Committee, Dr. Kathleen Schmeler, for their invaluable help in getting this program up and running.

Membership
The Council continues to provide guidance for our Strategic Alliance Partnership Program. National societies are supporting the concept as they find great value in partnering with IGCS; allowing us all to collaborate on priorities, and, in the end, find ways to improve the care women in their regions. It continues to the be goal of the program to strengthen and empower these regional societies by utilizing the resources of the IGCS. This program has generated substantial membership growth for the Society – with this growth we are beginning to realize our potential to meet our goal to truly be the premiere global gynecologic oncology organization.

The Council spent a great deal of time discussing member engagement and ways to continue and improve our service to members all over the globe. One item that has been under development is an online member network that will allow you, our members to communicate with each other, share knowledge and exchange ideas in a private online environment. The network will have many different avenues for networking and the Council is excited about the potential benefits for members to share research ideas, training challenges and career pragmatics. We are very grateful to Drs. Rainer Kimmig (Chair), Saketh Guntupalli, Natacha Poon, Ranjit Manchanda and Vivek Arora for the conception and delivery of this innovative tool.

The Council also agreed that we should conduct a membership survey, posing questions for you all to provide valuable input on ways you would like to be engaged with the society, to ascertain opportunities to improve your experience with IGCS, and to identify ways that IGCS can continue to be the premier global gynecologic oncology organization. We will email the survey to all members in early January and we hope each of you will take the time to provide us with your feedback. We will close the survey in time for the Council to review the information at our March Council Meeting in New Orleans.

Finances
The Council approved the 2018 budget and continues to be mindful of our fiduciary responsibilities. Our investments are performing exceptionally well, and the Council approved further diversification our investments to include socially responsible funds. I am grateful for the outstanding stewardship of our finances by Drs. Walter Gotlieb and Andreas Obermair our Secretary-Treasurer and Secretary-Treasurer Elect.

It was also agreed that a version of our audited accounts would be posted on our member website area to ensure transparency and to allow you to contact us regarding any areas of our finances which may concern you.

Organization & Governance
As the IGCS continues to grow and develop meaningful relationships and partnerships, the Council recognizes the need to ensure our current governance structure matches our new global approach. The decision was thus made to allow separate representation from Europe and from Africa/Middle East on Council. We also decided to designate a representative from China to the Council over the next four years.

The method of Council Member nomination and election was also extensively debated. We must ensure as wide a representation as possible and this representation should be balanced regarding gender and age. Furthermore, and importantly, members from each of the designated regions should vote to elect their representatives rather than the entire membership casting votes for regional representatives. In contrast, the method of electing officers should continue to be by the vote of the entire global membership. We will continue to update you on this process and are always grateful for feedback and suggestions. The 2018 nomination and election process will be conducted as it has been done in the past, but we envision this new approach to elections taking place with the 2020 elections.

The Council is also contemplating different models to further involve our Strategic Alliance Partners in the governance and decision making for Society business. There will be more information to come on this!

The Council received an update from Dr. Uzi Beller, our current Editor-in-Chief of the International Journal of Gynecologic Cancer (IJGC) and from our Editor-in-Chief-Elect, Dr. Pedro Ramirez. The Council expressed its gratitude to Dr. Beller in continuing to successfully steer the course of the IJGC during this transitional time.

The Council was updated on our work with FIGO and other gynecologic oncology organizations including SGO, ESGO and ASGO to address the issue of staging and the potential need for revisions. The IGCS Council is encouraged by the lead that IGCS has taken in this important area on behalf of our members.

We have also been improving the Society’s relationship with our industry colleagues. The Council approved the notion of formalizing an Industry Relations Committee that will allow the Society to capitalize on opportunities to provide input and education about new therapeutics. Dr. Robert Coleman has done extraordinary work in bridging the gap that previously existed, and I thank him for his efforts.

As the year comes to an end, I look forward to the next nine months of my presidency. We have been extraordinarily busy and have made great strides for the betterment of the Society, but there is still much work that lies ahead for us.

I look forward to hearing from each you as the Society continues to evolve and change into a truly global organization aimed at improving outcomes for women with gynecological cancer.

Please do not hesitate to contact me via email at quinnmichaelam@gmail.com

The Kyoto meeting is taking shape to be the very best IGCS meeting ever, so please note the date in your diaries! I hope to see you there September 14-16,2018.

Sincerely,

 

 

Michael Quinn, MA, MGO
2016-2018 IGCS President

 

Gynecologic Oncology News & Updates

A compilation of news articles in the field of gynecologic oncology and recent scientific studies

SABCS 2017: Temporary ovarian suppression with hormone analog may preserve fertility during breast cancer chemotherapy
December 7, 2017: ASCO Post – Meta-analysis of individual patient data from five randomized clinical trials provided a high level of evidence that treatment with a gonadotropin-releasing hormone analog (GnRHa) could safely and effectively protect ovarian function and potentially preserve fertility in premenopausal women receiving chemotherapy for early-stage breast cancer, according to a study presented by Lambertini et al at the 2017 San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium.” Read more.

European Commission approves Tesaro’s Zejula as maintenance therapy for ovarian cancer
December 1, 2017:  Ovarian Cancer News Today – “The European Commission has approved Tesaro‘s Zejula (niraparib) as a maintenance treatment for ovarian cancer, with or without BCRA mutations, in women who have shown a complete or partial response to platinum-based chemotherapy.” Read more.

Immune response predicts longer OS for ovarian cancer
November 30, 2017:  Healio – “Women with high-grade serous ovarian cancer and high levels of cytotoxic CD8 appeared to have longer OS than those with low or no CD8, suggesting the presence of the cells may be a prognostic factor for patients, according to study results.” Read more.

PARP inhibitors continue to show promise in ovarian cancer
November 29, 2017: Cure Today – “It’s important that we start to use these drugs more and more and bring them sooner into the management of the individual,” said Campos, who reviewed trial data and approvals for several PARP inhibitors and looked at the potential for advancing the use of these agents.” Read Dr. Susana M Campo’s comments on several trials including NOVA, SOLO-2, STUDY 19 and ARIEL-3.

Platinum-free interval linked with survival in recurrent ovarian cancer
November 28, 2017:  Journal of Clinical Pathways -“The length of time between the end of adjuvant platinum-based therapy and the recurrence of cancer is a strong predictor of survival in older women with recurrent ovarian cancer, according to a study published online in Gynecologic Oncology (online November 15, 2017; doi: 10.1016/j.ygyno.2017.11.008).” Read more.

SOTIO broadens its phase II clinical trial program in ovarian cancer
November 28, 2017: Pipeline Review.com – “SOTIO, a biotechnology company owned by the PPF Group, today announced the enrollment of the first patient to a Phase II study testing DCVAC/OvCa in combination with standard of care chemotherapy for patients with ovarian cancer after first relapse. Based on positive signals from ongoing trials, SOTIO is also expanding its ongoing study testing DCVAC/OvCa as a maintenance therapy in first line treatment of patients with ovarian cancer.” Read more. 

Early referral, education keys to helping patients manage lymphedema
November, 25, 2017: Oncology Times – “Lymphedema can be a major and long-term concern for many cancer patients, but good communication and collaboration among the patient, the treating oncologist, and supportive-care professionals can lessen these impacts and help patients move forward with good quality of life.” Read more.

Prevalence of secondary cancers underscores need for trial inclusion
November 22, 2017: Healio – “A quarter of older adults newly diagnosed with cancer from 2009 to 2013 had a prior cancer history, according to an observational study published in JAMA Oncology. Additionally, 11% of patients aged younger than 65 years diagnosed during that period also had a prior cancer history, researchers reported.” Read more.

Nearly half of cancer cases are within your control, researchers say
November 21, 2017: Time – “Diseases as complicated as cancer are often caused by genetic factors that are out of your control and risk factors that you can change. Now, researchers have calculated just how much of that risk is within a person’s control.” Read more.

Causes of immunotherapy-related side effects in cancer require more research
November 21, 2017: Healio –  “Oncologists and researchers should be more concerned with the lack of available data on the mechanisms of action behind significant immunotherapy-related adverse events in patients with cancer, according to a speaker at Chemotherapy Foundation Symposium.” Read more.

Endometrial cancer incidence rising in the US and worldwide
November 20, 2017:  Diagnoses of endometrial cancer have increased worldwide in recent years, with rates rising in more than half of 43 countries studied during the decade that ended around 2010, a team of international researchers has shown. The study, published October 16 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, also showed that rates of the disease vary widely among countries. Rates are highest in North America and Europe and lowest in middle-income countries, such as India and South Africa. Read more.

African American women face a more aggressive type of endometrial cancer: researchers can’t explain why
November 17, 2017: PBS – “It’s a puzzle with answers that have long eluded researchers: African American women are more likely to have a more aggressive form of endometrial cancer and more than twice as likely to die from it than white women, according to the American Cancer Society.” Read more.

Frequent bleeding outside of menstrual cycle may be sign of cancer
November 15, 2017: Dr. Toto Imam SpOG (K), gynecology and oncology expert at the Gatot Soebroto Military Hospital, said frequent bleeding outside of menstrual cycle may be a sign of cancer. The statement was delivered in the Seminar on Early Detection and Prevention of Reproductive Organs of Women in the Multifunction Room of Hermina Hospital in Bekasi, in cooperation with Cancer Information and Support Center (CISC), Wednesday (15/11/2017). Read more.

IUDs may have the power to fight cervical cancer, new study suggests
November 10, 2017: Observer – “In addition to being considered the most foolproof contraception method out there, a new study published in Obstetrics & Gynecology suggests intrauterine devices, or IUDs, may protect against cervical cancer.” Read more.

Endometrial cancer enters immunotherapy age
November 9, 2017: Onc Live – “The tumor-site agnostic FDA approval of the PD-1 inhibitor pembrolizumab (Keytruda) for patients with microsatellite instability-high (MSI-H) or mismatch repair deficient (dMMR) solid tumors has helped propel endometrial cancer into the immunotherapy age, according to Martee L. Hensley, MD.” Read more.

Survey asks why some ovarian cancer patients choose maintenance therapy
November 10, 2017: Cure Today – “What do people who have primary and recurrent ovarian cancer expect from maintenance therapy? A survey of about 1,950 people who chose to move forward with maintenance therapy revealed that most of them were expecting to buy time — at least 6 months’ delay in disease progression.” Read more. 

3D cultured spheroids could drive precision treatment for ovarian cancer
November 10, 2017: News Medical – “Honeycomb-like arrays of tiny, lab-grown cancers could one day help doctors zero in on individualized treatments for ovarian cancer, an unpredictable disease that kills more than 14,000 women each year in the United States alone. A team of researchers has devised a process that can grow hundreds of cultured cell masses, called spheroids, from just a few tumor cells derived from a patient.” Read more. 

Experts concerned about cervical cancer in Africa
November 9, 2017: Xinhuanet – “Health experts expressed concern about the rate which women in Africa silently losing their lives to cervical cancer which is potentially preventable with vaccines and early diagnosis. They made the remarks while speaking at a panel session dubbed “cervix and gynecological cancers” at the sidelines of the 11th International Conference on Cancer in Africa (AORTIC 2017) that opened in the Rwandan capital Kigali.” Read more

PARPS bring excitement to ovarian cancer treatment
November 9, 2017: Onc Live – “PARP inhibitors offer exciting opportunities to improve outcomes for patients with ovarian cancer and hopefully will be moved to the front-line setting if the evidence warrants it, said Susana M. Campos, MD” Read more.

Survival predictors in ovarian cancer and current immunotherapeutic strategies
November 9, 2017: Cancer therapy advisor – “Researchers have found 3 major predictors for survival: tumor infiltrating leukocytes (TIL), programmed death-ligand 1 (PD-L1) expression, and mutational burden.” Read more.

Survey shows patients consider several factors of maintenance therapy for ovarian cancer treatment
November 8, 2017: Onc Live – “Patients with ovarian cancer (OC) were unified in their responses regardless of age, disease stage, or whether they had primary or recurrent disease, and were more likely to opt to receive maintenance therapy if it could offer delay of disease progression and allow patients to maintain or improve their quality of life (QoL), according to findings from a survey reported at the European Society of Gynaecological Oncology (ESGO) 2017 Congress.” Read more.

Pembrolizumab shows activity in advanced cervical cancer
November 8, 2017: Cancer Network – “The immune checkpoint inhibitor pembrolizumab demonstrated antitumor activity in a small trial of patients with advanced cervical cancer. The agent had a similar toxicity profile to that seen in other malignancies.” Read more.

Age, race linked to survival disparities for HPV-associated cancers
November 7, 2017: Healio – “The relative survival rate for an individual with HPV-associated cancer appeared largely dependent on demographic characteristics such as sex, race and age, according to a population-based study. White patients demonstrated higher 5-year survival than black patients for all HPV-related cancers and all age groups, suggesting large disparities exist, the research showed.” Read more.

Robotic laparoscopy improves outcomes for patients with ovarian cancer, reaffirms role of surgery
November 6, 2017: Onc Live – “In a retrospective single-center study, investigators reviewed experience with robotic interval cytoreduction (IRC) following neoadjuvant chemotherapy for patients with advanced ovarian cancer who were treated between 2011 and 2016 at the University of Rochester Medical Center. After a mean of 3.9 cycles of neoadjuvant chemotherapy, 29 patients underwent IRC. One case (3.3%) was converted to an open versus robotic procedure because of extensive tumor not amenable to robotic cytoreduction.” Read more.

Mixed findings show dose-dense therapy noninferior to IP treatment in ovarian cancer
November 6, 2017: Onc Live – “Phase III findings of the ICON8 trial demonstrated that patients with ovarian cancer can safely undergo a 3-week dosing schedule of chemotherapy with paclitaxel versus a weekly dose-dense regimen, as neither approach was found to have a benefit in progression-free survival (PFS).Read more.

For the first time, researchers control cells’ chromatin to prevent cancer from adapting to treatment
November 6, 2017: Medical Xpress – “Northwestern Engineering’s Vadim Backman has developed an effective new strategy for treating cancer, which has wiped out the disease to near completion in cellular cultures in the laboratory. The treatment works by controlling , a group of macromolecules—including DNA, RNA, and proteins—that houses genetic information within and determines which  get suppressed or expressed.” Read more.

New medications for the treatment of ovarian cancer
November 5, 2017: “In an article recently published in Gynecologic Oncology Research and Practice Herzog and Monk reviewed the currently available medications in the management of epithelial ovarian cancer. Platinum-containing induction chemotherapy has been the first-line treatment for women with advanced ovarian cancers. However, there have been conflicting studies on the role of maintenance chemotherapy after achieving an objective response during induction. Some studies show that maintenance chemotherapy is beneficial for patients with ovarian cancers while others say otherwise.” Read more.

AKT1 E17K mutation targetable in various tumors through AKT inhibition
November 3, 2017: Onc Live – A multihistology basket study proved the targetability of the AKT1 E17Kmutation in human cancers by treating patients with various types of cancer harboring an AKT1 E17K mutation with AZD5363, an oral pan-AKT inhibitor, according to findings published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. 1 The PI3K/AKT pathway is one of the most frequently activated pathways across cancers and can be triggered by one of several mutations.” Read more.

PARP inhibitor may be effective against some triple-negative breast cancers lacking BRCA mutations
November 11, 2017: Amercan Association for Cancer Research – “The investigational PARP inhibitor talazoparib caused regression of patient-derived xenografts (PDXs) of triple-negative breast cancers (TNBC) that had BRCA mutations and also those that did not have BRCA mutations but had other alterations in DNA damage-repair pathways, according to results of a study published in Clinical Cancer Research” Read more.

Africa: First Lady – Africa needs to do more in the fight against cancer
November 8, 2017: All Africa – “Addressing the (AORTIC) participants, the First Lady highlighted the threat that cancer poses depicted by the 2015 World Health Organisation (WHO) report which stated that cancer accounted for 8.8 million deaths globally, 70 percent of which occurring in low and middle income countries, many of which are in Africa.” Read more.

Secondary cytoreductive surgery shows promise in ovarian cancer
November 7, 2017: Onc Live – In a phase III study of patients with platinum-sensitive recurrent ovarian cancer, the impact of secondary cytoreductive surgery was evaluated. The AGO DESKTOP III/ENGOT ov20 trial randomized patients to second-line chemotherapy alone versus cytoreductive surgery followed by chemotherapy. Read more.

No overall survival advantage in frontline Nintedanib with chemotherapy in advanced ovarian cancer
November 7, 2017: Onc Live – “The final analysis of overall survival (OS) data from the phase III AGO-OVAR 12 trial of nintedanib (Ofev) plus carboplatin/paclitaxel versus carboplatin/paclitaxel alone in women with chemotherapy-naïve advanced ovarian cancer did not demonstrate a survival advantage with the addition of nintedanib, according to the findings presented at the European Society of Gynaecological Oncology (ESGO) 2017 Congress.” Read more.

Dr. Sehouli Discusses Trial of Secondary Cytoreductive Surgery in Ovarian Cancer
November 7, 2017: Onc Live – “Sehouli says that surgery is the cornerstone of primary treatment for ovarian cancer, followed by subsequent chemotherapy with platinum combinations. The role of surgery in the relapsed setting is not as defined though.” See the interview.

Study reveals large disparities in survival for patients with HPV-associated cancers
November 6, 2017: Medical Xpress – “A new study found large disparities by sex, race, and age in survival for patients diagnosed with different cancers caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV). Published early online in Cancer, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society, the findings suggest that improvements in HPV vaccination and access to cancer screening and treatment are needed.” Read more.

‘Super T cells’ engineered for optimal performance drive new gene-therapy approach
November 3, 2017: Medical Xpress – “What we see over and over in trying to treat some of the most aggressive and intractable cancers, including many lung, brain, ovarian, breast, melanoma and sarcoma tumors, is that the tumor fights back. The area around the tumor is a hostile environment that disarms immune cells and deprives them of the ability to kill tumor cells. We have identified a major pathway by which these kinds of cells try to disable immune cells, and formulated a strategy for exploiting that weakness,” says the study’s principal investigator, Kunle Odunsi.” Read more.

Precision radiooncology enables women to maintain an active sex life after gynaecological radiotherapy
November 2, 2017: Medical Xpress – “This is due to the combination of three mainstays of precision medicine in radiooncology: optimum prevention, precise irradiation of the tumour and subsequent sexual counselling. Preventive measures include even more careful planning of radiotherapy to direct a high dose of radiation at the tumour while sparing healthy tissue and surrounding organs, including part of the vagina, as far as possible.” Read more.

HPV status linked to overall and disease-free survival in vulvar cancer
November 1, 2017: Cancer Therapy Advisor – “Women with vulvar cancers who test positive for human papillomavirus (HPV) may have improved survival compared with HPV-negative patients, according to a study published in the International Journal of Cancer. Although women with HPV are at an increased risk of developing malignancies such as oropharyngeal, cervical, vulvar, and vaginal cancers, previous studies have shown that the HPV status of a patient may predict survival.” Read more.

Maintenance Poly (ADP-ribose) Polymerase inhibitor therapy for ovarian cancer: precision oncology or one size fits all?
November 1, 2017: Journal of Clinical Oncology – “Platinum/taxane combinations are the most effective regimens for treatment of epithelial ovarian cancer. Response varies between patients, but because the molecular basis for resistance is not defined, patients receive so-called one size fits all therapy.” Read the full article.

New blood test developed to diagnose ovarian cancer
October 31, 2017: EurekAlert! – “Investigators from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute are leveraging the power of artificial intelligence to develop a new technique to detect ovarian cancer early and accurately. The team has identified a network of circulating microRNAs – small, non-coding pieces of genetic material – that are associated with risk of ovarian cancer and can be detected from a blood sample.” Read more.

Robot-assisted surgery costs more but may not be better
October 30, 2017: The Wall Street Journal (subscription required)- “Robot-assisted surgeries—a technology oft-touted by hospitals—are longer and more expensive than other types of minimally invasive surgeries, according to a growing body of studies. And in some types of surgery, they have a lower success rate.” WSJ discusses two studies in JAMA comparing robotic-assisted surgeries to laparoscopic.

Must-read advice from black doctors on preventing and battling cancer
October 26, 2017: Essence – “African-Americans have the highest death rate and shortest survival of any racial group in the United States for most cancers. “I tell women that if cancer is more aggressive in Black women, then you have to be more aggressive in taking care of yourself,” says B. Lee Green, Jr., Ph.D.” Read more.

Genomic profiling identifies patients most likely to respond to immunotherapy
October 25, 2017: Oncology Times – “This is the first time the FDA has approved a cancer treatment based on a common biomarker rather than the location in the body where the tumor originated. With this approval, pembrolizumab is now indicated for the treatment of adult and pediatric patients with unresectable or metastatic solid tumors that have microsatellite instability-high (MSI-High) or mismatch repair (MMR) deficiency.” Read more.

Frequent need to urinate could be a sign on ovarian cancer
October 25, 2017: Techtimes – “Needing to use the toilet more often than usual is a symptom of ovarian cancer. Findings of a new survey, however, have revealed that only 1 percent of women are aware of this warning sign.” Read more.

Expert discusses immunotherapy across gynecologic malignancies
October 23, 2017: Onc Live – “Immunotherapy is slowly evolving in the gynecologic malignancies landscape and has moved beyond only having a role in ovarian cancer, according to Dmitriy Zamarin, MD, PhD.” Read more of this interview.

New treatment options offer hope for Saudi ovarian cancer patients
October 23, 2017: Arab News – “Dr. Faisal Al-Safi, section head and consultant in gynecologic oncology, department of oncology at the King Abdul Aziz Medical City/National Guard Health Affairs, said that ovarian cancer therapy has been improving due to the development of scientific research particularly during the last five years, which led to important strides offering more promising solutions for the disease, which causes an annual mortality of around 150,000 women globally.” Read more.

Extensive lymph node removal doesn’t improve survival in some women with early-stage breast cancer
October 10, 2017: Cancer.gov – “Long-term results from a large clinical trial confirm that, for some women with early-stage breast cancer who have lumpectomy as their surgical treatment, a less extensive lymph node biopsy approach is sufficient.” Read more.

As cancer tears through Africa, drug makers draw up battle plan
October 7, 2017: New York Times – “Under the new agreement, the companies — Pfizer, based in New York, and Cipla, based in Mumbai — have promised to charge rock-bottom prices for 16 common chemotherapy drugs. The deal, initially offered to a half-dozen countries, is expected to bring lifesaving treatment to tens of thousands who would otherwise die.” Read the NY Times article.

Death rates dropping, but racial disparities remain in breast cancer
October 3, 2017: Oncology Nursing News – According to a recent study released by the American Cancer Society, “From 2006 to 2015, there was a decrease in deaths in all groups. But, the death rate among non-Hispanic Black women continued to be higher than non-Hispanic white women.” Read more.

Dr. Ginsburg on genetic testing guidelines for gynecologic malignancies
October 3, 2017: Onc Live – Dr. Ophira Ginsburg in a video interview regarding NCCN guidelines for genetic testing. See the interview.

Celsion announces final clinical and traslational research data from its OVATION study at the AACR special conference on ovarian cancer
October 3, 2017: Global Newswire – “Final clinical and translational research data from its OVATION Study, a Phase Ib dose escalating clinical trial combining GEN-1, the Company’s DNA-based immunotherapy, with the standard of care for the treatment of newly-diagnosed patients with advanced Stage III/IV ovarian cancer who will undergo neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by interval debulking surgery.” Read the press release.

ASTRO 2017: GOG-249 confirms adjuvant pelvic radiation as standard of care for high-risk, early stage endometrial cancer
September 29, 2017: ASCO Post –  “In a new phase III trial report from the National Clinical Trial Network group, NRG Oncology, recurrence-free and overall survival rates for women with stage I–II high-risk endometrial cancer were not superior following adjuvant vaginal cuff brachytherapy plus chemotherapy when compared with adjuvant pelvic radiation therapy.” Read more.

Acelarin-Paraplatin combo shows high disease control rates in phase 1b trial for ovarian cancer
September 29, 2017: Ovarian Cancer News Today – “Nearly all ovarian cancer patients enrolled in NuCana‘s Phase 1b trial benefited from the combination of Acelarin (NUC-1031) plus Paraplatin (carboplatin), according to data presented at the recent European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2017 Congress in Madrid.” Read the article.

Third CDK blocker approved for breast cancer
September 28, 2017: MedPage Today – “The FDA approved abemaciclib (Verzenio) for treatment of hormone receptor-positive, HER2-negative breast cancers that have progressed while patients were on endocrine therapy.” Read more.

More expansive genetic testing needed in ovarian cancer
September 28, 2017: Cure Today – “More research is needed on the other genetic mutations, besides BRCA, that patients with ovarian cancer harbor so that they can be used to help plan treatments.” Read more.

Ovarian cancer care: What PCPs need to know
September 27, 2017: Healio interviews Dr. Stephanie Blank regarding primary care physicians and their role in prevention, screening of ovarian cancer and more. Read the interview.

Genelux initiates phase 2 clinical trial of GL-ONC1 in recurrent ovarian cancer
September 27, 2017: “Genelux Corporation, a privately-held biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of its proprietary oncolytic immunotherapy platform, today announced that it has treated the first patient in a Phase 2 clinical trial in recurrent ovarian cancer, with its lead clinical-stage candidate, GL-ONC1.” Read the press release.

Pelvic radiation remains standard treatment for early-stage endometrial cancer
September 26, 2017: Healio – “Vaginal cuff brachytherapy with chemotherapy did not extend RFS or OS compared with pelvic radiation therapy for women with stage I or stage II high-risk endometrial cancer, according to phase 3 results of the Gynecology Oncology Group-249 trial presented at the American Society for Radiation Oncology Annual Meeting.” Read the article.

Marcus E. Randall, MD, on endometrial cancer: results from a gynecology oncology group study
September 2017: ASCO Post – “A video interview with Dr. Randall on the phase II study findings on pelvic radiation therapy vs vaginal cuff brachytherapy followed by paclitaxel/carboplatin chemotherapy in patients with high-risk, early stage endometrial cancer.” Watch the video.

Solange Peters, MD, PhD and Mary Gospodarowicz, MD, on mentoring women in oncology: an international perspective
September 2017: ASCO Post – A video interview with Dr. Mary Gospodarowicz, a recipient of the 2017 Women who Conquer Cancer Mentorship Award. See the interview.

New hope for ovarian cancer
September 25, 2017: Mayo Clinic – interview with an ovarian cancer survivor discussing the new treatments available and the hope they bring. Read the piece.

The high cost of new cancer therapies – a challenge of inequality for all countries
September 2017: JAMA Network – Viewpoint article on the high cost of cancer drugs and the need to take action. Login required to Read the full article. 

The HPV vaccine gains ground amoung US teenagers
September 22, 2017: New York Times – “More than half of all American teenagers are getting vaccinated against human papillomavirus, and the rate is rising over time, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.” Read more.

Bevacizumab extends survival in advanced cervical cancer
September 22, 2017: Healio – “The addition of bevacizumab to chemotherapy continued to show significant survival benefits in women with advanced cervical cancer, according to final analysis of a randomized, open-label, phase 3 trial published in The Lancet.” Read more.

New genetic test for predicting cancer recurrence
September 21, 2017: Medical Xpress – “Researchers have discovered a new genetic test which could help predict cancer recurrence – paving the way for more precise, personalised treatments.” Read more.

HPV self-sampling could boost cervical cancer screening rates in transgender men
September 20, 2017: Healio – “Transgender men are less likely to be screened for cervical cancer than cisgender women. About half of the transgender men surveyed reported they had not received a Pap smear within the past 3 years.” Read more.

Gardasil 9 vaccine seen as effective cervical cancer combatant, study finds
September 15, 2017: Life Science Daily – “Results determined Gardasil 9 showed 97.4 percent efficacy to prevent infections and disease caused by the five additional HPV genotypes not included in the four-valent Gardasil vaccine.” Read more.

ESMO 2017: Study confirms chemoradiation is best treatment for locally advanced cervical cancer
September 14, 2017: ASCO Post – A 14-year randomized trial in more than 600 patients has concluded that chemoradiation should remain the standard treatment for patients with locally advanced cervical cancer. The findings were reported at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2017Congress in Madrid (Abstract 928O_PR). Read more.

Avastin Clone OK’d – Biosimilar for bevacizumab approved for various cancers
September 14, 2017: MedPage Today –  “Amgen’s biosimilar for the angiogenesis-inhibiting biologic drug bevacizumab, to be sold as Mvasi, was approved…by the FDA.” Read more.

The crisis in gynecologic cancer research
September 14, 2017:
This New York Times editorial discusses the drop in the number of gynecologic cancer clinical trials by 90 percent from 2011 to 2016 in the United States. Read the story from the NYT.

Editorial Article: Epigenetic biomarkers in gynecological cancers explored
September 14, 2017: Dr. Lewis Francis, of Swansea University, discusses ChIP methods used in his research on the role of epigenetics in ovarian and endometrial cancers. Read the interview.

Multivitamins tied to reduced risk of chemo-induced neuropathy

September 13, 2017: HealthDay News — “Multivitamin use before diagnosis of breast cancer is associated with reduced risk of symptoms of chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN), according to a study published online September 1 in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.” Read more.

Is genetic testing for cancer survivors underutilized?
September 13, 2017: “More than 80% of women with a history of either breast or ovarian cancer may not be receiving necessary genetic testing, according to a new study in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.” Read more.

Preventing cancer and other diseases caused by Human Papillomavirus infection: 2017 Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Research Award
September 12, 2017: JAMA Network – “The 2017 Lasker-DeBakey Clinical Medical Research Award has been presented to Douglas Lowy and John Schiller for development of the virus-like particle technology that was used to create the human papillomavirus vaccine to prevent cervical cancer and other diseases.” Read the article.

For many women, cervical cancer screening may get a lot simpler
September 12, 2017: NPR discusses the impact of the new draft recommendations from the US Preventative Services Task Force. Read the article.

Who is the current Minister of Health in Nigeria 2017?
September 12, 2017: Professor Isaac Adewole has recently taken over the position of minister of health in Nigeria. Before he was appointed to become the minister he was a Professor of Obstetrics and Gynaecology at the College of Medicine, University of Ibadan. Read more.

No PFS gain with dose-dense weekly chemotherapy in epithelial ovarian cancer
September 11, 2017: medwireNews: “The 3-weekly regimen of carboplatin and paclitaxel should remain the first-line standard of care for women with epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal carcinoma, say the ICON8 researchers who did not find a progression-free survival (PFS) benefit with dose-dense weekly chemotherapy.” Read more.

Understanding racial disparities in endometrial cancer
September 10, 2017: Oncology Times – Dr. Kemi Doll “is ambitiously engaged in a multi-pronged, ‘360-degree’ research project to detect endometrial cancer diagnosis and treatment pathways, as well as the delay of the same, particularly for black women.” Read more.

A look at glucose metabolism in ovarian cancer
September 10, 2017: “A new study of non-diabetic women with ovarian cancer reveals a potential correlation and area for further study regarding the expression of the GLUT1 glucose transporter receptor at the cancer tissue level.” Read more about the study in Oncology Times.

Precision Medicine: A new era for ovarian cancer
September 10, 2017: Oncology Times published a study on genomics, clinical trial enrollment and research directions. Read the article.

Concomitant chemoradiation should be standard for locally advanced cervical cancer
September 10, 2017: Healio.com reports: “Neoadjuvant chemotherapy followed by radical surgery did not improve outcomes compared with cisplatin-based concurrent chemoradiation for women with locally advanced squamous carcinoma of the cervix, according to results of a randomized controlled trial presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology Congress.” Read more.

Reproductive potential can be maintained after ovarian tissue transplant
September 10, 2017: Healio.com reports: “Ovarian tissue preservation, subsequent transplantation and maintenance of reproductive potential may be feasible for women with breast cancer who have BRCA mutations, according to a retrospective analysis presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology Congress.” Read more.

Dr. Mirza on niraparib plus bevacizumab combo in ovarian cancer
September 10, 2017: Onc Live.com: “Mansoor Raza Mirza, MD discusses phase I results of a trial exploring the combination of niraparib (Zejula) and bevacizumab (Avastin) in patients with platinum-sensitive epithelial ovarian cancer.” See the video.

Nirapatib maintains quality of life in recurrent ovarian cancer
September 8, 2017: Oncology Nurse Advisor reports: “Administering niraparib to patients with recurrent ovarian cancer after a complete response (CR) or partial response (PR) to platinum-based chemotherapy may allow patients to continuously maintain their quality of life (QOL) during treatment, according to a study presented at the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) 2017 Congress.” Read more.

New data confirms standard dosing of chemotherapy in ovarian cancer treatment
​September 6, 2017: Women with ovarian cancer can safely stick to the standard 3-week dosing schedule for paclitaxel rather than boosting up to a weekly dose-dense regimen, according to results of the phase III ICON8 trial to be presented at the ESMO 2017 Congress in Madrid. Read more.

Five important updates in gynecologic cancer
September 1, 2017: Healio.com sums up five updates about screening and treatment of gyn cancers.

Cancer patients still facing lack of information about
August, 31, 2017: Patients undergoing cancer treatment are still not getting enough support when it comes to the impact that the disease and its treatment has on their fertility, a new study has discovered. Read more from FIGO news.

Does baby powder cause cancer? A jury says yes. Scientists aren’t so sure. 
August 22, 2017: Read the story from NPR.

Palliative care reduces aggressive treatment of advanced cancer
August 22, 2017: Exposure to palliative care considerably reduced health care utilization among Medicare beneficiaries with advanced cancer, according to observational study results published in Journal of Oncology Practice. Read more from Healio.com.

Platinum therapy should not be delayed in ovarian cancer relapse
August 22, 2017: Platinum-based chemotherapy (PBC) should not be delayed in favor of non-platinum-based therapy (NPBC) in patients with partially platinum-sensitive ovarian cancer (OC), according to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Read more from Cancer Therapy Advisor.

BRCA locus-specific loss of heterozygosity in germline BRCA1 and BRCA2 carriers
August 22, 2017: Nature Communications published a study online reporting analyses of 160 BRCA1 and BRCA2 germline mutation-associated breast and ovarian tumors. Read the study.

Lynparza receives additional FDA approval for ovarian cancer
August 21, 2017: From Managed Care: “The PARP inhibitor olaparib (Lynparza, AstraZeneca/Merck) has received FDA approval for a broader indication in ovarian cancer cases, including a new tablet formulation that will ease women’s pill burden.” Learn more about the specific approvals.

Addition of CA4P to bevacizumab confers modest PFS benefit in platinum-resistant ovarian cancer
August 17, 2017: Healio reports: “A second interim analysis of a trial designed to evaluate the addition of CA4P to standard therapy for patients with platinum-resistant ovarian cancer showed a small PFS benefit for the combination. However, the difference did not reach statistical significance.” Read more.

Clinical trial stirs controversy over power morcellator bags
August 16, 2017: “A clinical trial scheduled to evaluate the safety and efficacy of a bag designed to catch cancerous tissue from power morcellation in women undergoing laparoscopic hysterectomies has rekindled debate in the gynecologic community over the controversial procedure.” Read about the study on Healio.com.

Sexual dysfunction in women with cancer: a review of available interventions
August 15, 2017: Oncology Nurse Advisor reports: “According to a study published in the European Journal of Cancer Care, cancer diagnosis and treatment have varied social, psychological, and physical impact on sexual health and may decrease quality of life for women.” Read more.

Expert discusses promise of Mirvetuximab Soravtansine in ovarian cancer
August 14, 2017: Onc Live reports: “Mirvetuximab soravtansine (IMGN853) demonstrated a favorable toxicity profile and encouraging clinical activity in patients with epithelial ovarian cancer, according to a pooled analysis of phase I expansion cohorts that was presented at the 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting.” Read more.

Dr. Chase on future treatment landscape of gynecologic malignancies
August 10, 2017: Onc Live posted a video interview with Dana M. Chase on the future treatment landscape of gynecologic malignancies, including vulvar cancer, endometrial cancer, and cervical cancer. Watch the video.

Identifying essential genes for cancer immunotherapy
August 9, 2017: ASCO Post – “A new study published by Patel et al in Nature identifies genes that are necessary in cancer cells for immunotherapy to work—addressing the problem of why some tumors don’t respond to immunotherapy, or respond initially but then stop as tumor cells develop resistance to immunotherapy.” Read the discussion.

Dr. Arend discusses MSI testing in gynecologic malignancies
August 9, 2017:
Onc Live posts a video interview with Dr. Rebecca Arend, MD regarding microsatellite instability (MSI) testing in patients with gynecologic malignancies. See the video.

Bevacizumab OS benefit confirmed in cervical cancer
August 8, 2017: Onc Live reports: “Adding bevacizumab (Avastin) to chemotherapy improved overall survival (OS) for women with cervical cancer, according to final results from the phase III GOG 240 trial published online in The Lancet.” Read more.

NCI study identifies essential genes for cancer immunotherapy
August 7, 2017: NIH – “A new study identifies genes that are necessary in cancer cells for immunotherapy to work, addressing the problem of why some tumors don’t respond to immunotherapy or respond initially but then stop as tumor cells develop resistance to immunotherapy.” Read more.

Opioid use common among cancer survivors
August 7, 2017: Healio reports: “Cancer survivors, even those 10 years or longer past diagnosis, had 1.22-times higher prescription opioid use than matched individuals without a history of cancer, according to results of a population-based study.” Read the Healio article. Read the original study.

New data address critical surgical questions in ovarian cancer
August 4, 2017: Dr. Maurie Markman discusses two abstracts presented at the 2017 ASCO meeting: LION Study (Lymphadenectomy in Ovarian Neoplasms) and Secondary Cytoreductive Surgery in Recurrent Ovarian Cancer. Watch the video or read the transcript.

Surgeons and the opioid epidemic: Treatment and education strategies for the practicing surgeon
August 2, 2017: The American College of Surgeons released a bulletin to address issues surgeons are facing regarding opioids. The bulletin includes Implicit bias and the perception of pain, opioid treatment of chronic pain, opioid management training and a general approach to improved treatment of surgical pain. Read the bulletin.

Celsion announces latest translational data from the OVATION Study in newly diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer patients
August 2, 2017: Nasdaq reports: “findings from the translational research data from its Phase Ib dose escalating clinical trial (the OVATION Study) combining GEN-1, the Company’s IL-12 gene-mediated immunotherapy, with the standard of care for the treatment of newly-diagnosed patients with Stage III and IV ovarian cancer who will undergo neoadjuvant chemotherapy (NACT) followed by interval debulking surgery.” Read the press release.

Lower body lymphedema in patients with gynecologic cancer
August 2017: This International Journal of Cancer Research and Treatment review “focuses on secondary lymphedema due to gynecologic cancer treatment, analyzing its incidence in the different types of gynecologic cancer, diagnosis, risk factors, impact on QoL and treatment.” Read the study.

77-year-old cancer patient undergoes robotic surgery
July 31, 2017: The Times of India reports the benefits of robotic surgery and an instance in which it was used for an ovarian cancer patient. Read the article. 

Bristol-Myers Squibb, Clovis Oncology to evaluate nivolumab-rucaparib combination
July 31, 2017: Healio reports: Bristol-Myers Squibb and Clovis Oncology entered a clinical collaboration to evaluate the combination of nivolumab and rucaparib for treatment of three tumor types. The collaboration will include two pivotal phase 3 trials and one phase 2 trial designed to assess the PD-1 checkpoint inhibitor nivolumab (Opdivo, Bristol-Myers Squibb) in combination with the PARP inhibitor rucaparib. Read more.

Is it possible to get pregnant after endometrial cancer? An oncologist explains
July 30, 2017: Kelly Mullen McWilliams blogs about uterine cancer and pregnancy. Read the blog.

Molecular similarities discovered among endometrial cancers
July 28, 2017: Healio reports: “Clear cell endometrial cancer appeared to have molecular similarities with serous endometrial cancer and endometrioid endometrial cancer, according to a study published in Cancer.” Read the article.

Researchers to present clinical data supporting use of Xoft System for endometrial cancer treatment at American Association of Physicists in Medicine Annual Meeting & Exhibition
July 27, 2017: EconoTimes reports: “Researchers from Miguel Servet University Hospital in Zaragoza, Spain will present preliminary findings from their recent clinical experience treating 36 endometrial cancer patients with electronic brachytherapy using the Xoft System at the AAPM meeting. The dosimetric analysis showed that electronic brachytherapy with the Xoft System delivered a lower dose of radiation to surrounding healthy organs at risk in patients with endometrial cancer, such as the bladder and rectum, than would have been delivered by treatment with Ir-192 or Co-60 sources.” Read more.

Challenges in international comparison of health care systems
July 27, 2017: The JAMA Netowrk published a “viewpoint” article on the differences between health care systems across the globe and how they can be compared despite these differences. Read the article.

Complementary cancer therapies: fatigue and exercise
July 27, 2017: Cure Today published an opinion piece on the positive impact of exercise for cancer patients and survivors. Read the article.

Olaparib tablets prolong progression-free survival in ovarian cancer
July 26, 2017: Cancer Therapy Advisor reports: “Maintenance treatment with olaparib tablets may prolong progression-free survival (PFS) without negatively affecting quality of life among patients with relapsed ovarian cancer, according to a study published in The Lancet Oncology.Read more

How PARP inhibitors might prove useful in more than just BRCA cancers
July 26, 2017: FierceBiotech reports: “Scientists led by the University of Pennsylvania believe Lynparza may be able to kill cancer cells that don’t have the mutations—provided it’s paired with a helper compound.” Read more.

Cancer patients in chemo ward may influence each other’s survival
July 25, 2017: Reuters Health reports: “Who a cancer patient spends time with in the chemotherapy ward may have a small but significant effect on their likelihood of surviving the disease, suggests a small study in the UK.” Read the article.

Doctors receiving training in cervical cancer surgery
July 24, 2017: The Himalayan Times report that “doctors of Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital and Nepal Cancer Relief Society have been undergoing surgical training in gynecologic oncology from Health Volunteers Overseas, USA.” Read more.

Breast cancer due to non-brca1 and non-BRCA2 mutations in Ashkenazi Jewish Women
July 20, 2017: JAMA Network posts an audio file of an interview with Mary-Claire King, author of Genetic Predisposition to Breast Cancer Due to Mutations other than BRCA1 and BRCA2 Founder Alleles Among Ashkenazi Jewish Women. Listen to the interview. 

Nivolumab active in advanced gynecologic cancers
July 19, 2017: Onc Live reports: from ASCO 2017: “In phase I/II results from CheckMate-358, nivolumab (Opdivo) demonstrated clinical activity in women with recurrent/metastatic cervical cancer, and was active to a lesser extent in vaginal and vulvar cancers.” Read more.

Task force maintains recommendation against ovarian cancer screening
July 18, 2017: Drs. Maurie Markman and Richard Penson agree with the US Preventative Services Task Force advising “against screening for ovarian cancer in women who have no signs or symptoms, noting that screening does not decrease the number of deaths from ovarian cancer and may lead to women having unnecessary surgery.” Read more.

FDA ODAC recommends biosimilar bevacizumab and trastuzumab
July 18, 2017: The European Society for Medical Oncology reports the recent FDA recommendation regarding these two drugs. Read more.

Preventative mastectomies provide little survival benefit for ovarian cancer patients, study finds
July 17, 2017: Ovarian Cancer News Today reports: “Mastectomies and the removal of ovaries and fallopian tubes are considered preventive measures for women carrying BRCA genetic mutations linked to breast and ovarian cancer. But for women who have already had ovarian cancer, a risk-reducing mastectomy is not cost-effective and provides few survival benefits, according to researchers at Duke University Medical Center.” Read more.

Rethinking the ASCO Resource Stratified Cervical Cancer Screening Guidelines in the context of existing health infrastructure in basic settings
July 17, 2017: The Journal of Clinical Oncology publishes a response to the ASCO guideline challenging two of the recommendations the believe overlook opportunities to use existing health infrastructure in low- and middle-income countries. Read the correspondence.

With cancer screening, better safe than sorry?
July 17, 2017: The New York Times editorial discusses the risks and benefits of cancer screening as well as providing a list of US screening guidelines for different cancers. Read the article.

High-grade dysplasia increases long-term risk for HPV-related cancers
July 17, 2017: Healio.com reports: “Women maintained an increased risk for premalignancies and carcinomas of the anus, vulva, vagina and oropharynx 20 years after cervical intraepithelial neoplasia grade 3 diagnosis, according to results of a population-based study.” Read more.

Novel agent produces highest OS to date in PRmCC
July 14, 2017: Clinical Oncology reports: “Data from a multicenter trial of a novel targeted immunotherapy for the treatment of persistent/recurrent or metastatic cervical cancer (PRmCC) have yielded historic results: a 12-month overall survival (OS) of 38%, exceeding OS rates of more than 20 other clinical trials conducted in this area over nearly two decades.” Read more.

Cervical Cancer: ESMO Clinical Practice Guidelines for diagnosis, treatment and follow-up
July 13, 2017: Annals of Oncology publishes ESMO cervical cancer guidelines focusing on the management, follow-up, long term implications and survivorship as well as a new treatment algorithm. Read the guidelines.

Clinical trials are the way forward for ovarian cancer, but they need advocates at every level
July 9, 2017: Cure Today reports: “For women with ovarian cancer, the message is clear: participating in clinical trials, even early-phase ones, offers the best hope for better treatments, but efforts are urgently needed at every level to ensure that more of these research opportunities are available.” Read more.

The road ahead for ovarian cancer
July 8, 2017: Cure today reports: “Opening the 20th Annual Ovarian Cancer National Conference in Chicago, John Moroney, M.D., underscored the challenges that remain in the early detection and treatment of ovarian cancer, but also the tremendous hope that resides in robust clinical trial research.” Read the full article with more quotes from Dr. Moroney.

Incidence and prevalence of cancer in Colombia: the methodology used matters
July 6, 2017: Study published in ASCO’s Journal of Global Oncology compares real-world data from the health care system and estimates from cancer registries to determine a more precise estimation of patients with cancer in Colombia. Read the study.

Rates of pregnancy significantly lower in cancer survivors compared with general population
July 6, 2017: Oncology nurse advisor reports: A large scale population study revealed that girls and women aged 39 years and younger may be up to 38% less likely to achieve pregnancy after surviving cancer vs patients who have never had cancer. Read more.

Web-based symptom self-reporting improves survival
July 6, 2017: ClinicalOncology.com reports: “Having patients proactively report symptoms through a web-based tool improved survival in patients receiving routine outpatient chemotherapy, according to results from a Phase III trial. The approach increased median overall survival by five months compared with usual care.” Read more.

HPV triage after abnormal cervical cytology detects CIN earlier
July 5, 2017: Cancer Network reports “Women who undergo human papillomavirus (HPV) testing following a test showing abnormal cytology have earlier detection of high-grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN), compared to those who do not undergo HPV testing, according to a new study. The higher rates of detection come at the expense of increased biopsy and electrosurgical excision rates.” Read more.

Angle’s ovarian cancer test could beat current standard
July 5, 2017: “UK liquid biopsy group Angle has released trial findings that indicate its Parsortix blood test has the potential to out-perform the current standard of care in detecting ovarian cancer.” Read more.

PARP inhibitor shows promise in ovarian cancer
July 5, 2017: “Results of the ARIEL3 study of rucaparib (Rubraca) show promise for the drug’s potential in helping women with advanced ovarian cancer, according to Boulder, Colo.-based Clovis Oncology, a biopharmaceutical company that specializes in cancer treatments.” Read more.

Celsion announces completion of OVATION study and provides update on its immunotherapy trial in advanced stage III and IV ovarian cancer
July 5, 2017: GlobeNewswire reports “Celsion Corporation (NASDAQ:CLSN) today provided an update on its Phase Ib dose escalating clinical trial (the OVATION Study) combining GEN-1, the Company’s IL-12 gene-mediated immunotherapy, with neoadjuvant chemotherapy for the treatment of newly-diagnosed patients with Stage III and IV ovarian cancer followed by interval debulking surgery.” Read the announcement.

FDA grants orphan drug designation to ALM201 for ovarian cancer
July 5, 2017: Healio.com announces: “ALM201 (Almac Discovery) is a therapeutic peptide developed to imitate properties of the FKBPL protein, a naturally secreted protein that has effects on multiple tumor biology processes, including cancer stem cells and angiogenesis.” Read the announcement.

Read archived news stories.

2018 Membership Renewal

Please Submit Membership Dues by December 31, 2017

Thank you for being a valued member of the IGCS. Over the past year, many exciting changes have taken place within the Society, from rebranding and creating a new website, to developing new programs and online member resources. These enhancements have been made with you, the IGCS Member in mind. Please take a moment to review your IGCS Member benefits.

The IGCS relies on the strength of your membership to remain an active, vital part of the global gynecologic cancer community. We are currently renewing for the 2018 membership year: January 1, 2018-December 31, 2018.

All memberships are scheduled to expire on December 31, 2017. To continue your member benefits and uninterrupted online access to the International Journal of Gynecological Cancer, please log in here: https://igcs.org/member-dues, and submit your dues payment. While you are logged in, please take a moment to review your profile to verify that your contact and demographic information is current. 

The preferred method of payment is online by credit card. However, if you wish to mail a check or money order or require additional documentation, please email info@igcs.org. If you have technical problems with the IGCS website, email webmaster@igcs.org.

IGCS values your participation and commitment to the society.  We thank you for your continuing membership.

Submit Payment

Global Meeting of the IGCS

Starting in 2019, the IGCS meeting will occur annually and be referred to as:

The Global Meeting of the International Gynecologic Cancer Society

Over the past thirty years, the IGCS has grown from a small, ambitious society with less than four hundred attendees at the first meeting in Amsterdam, to a strong global community drawing more members and attendees each decade. With our history of success and potential for growth in mind, the IGCS Council has decided to increase the frequency of our society’s meeting from once every two years to an annual conference occurring each year.

Moving to an annual event will allow us to bring our meeting to more geographic locations with greater frequency, providing you with additional opportunities to share your research, collaborate with colleagues and receive education from leaders around the globe.

We hope to see you in Kyoto, Japan next year, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2019 and at future IGCS meetings to come! Abstract submission for the 2018 meeting in Kyoto will be open through May 9, 2018.

Read the Current Issue of IJGC

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IJGC is the scientific publication for topics relevant to detection, prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of gynecologic malignancies. IJGC emphasizes a multidisciplinary approach, and includes original research (clinical trials and translational or basic research), reviews, and opinion pieces. The list of associate editors represents every part of the globe and all the major disciplines involved in treating cancer. Preview the current issue (November, 2017) table of contents here.

IGCS Members
Sign in to the IGCS Member Portal and click through to the Journal to gain full access to the articles.

Read “Featured Article” Blogs written by IGCS Education Committee Members.

N0t an IGCS Member?
Join today to obtain online access to IJGC.

IGCS to Host Annual Conference

Dear IGCS Member,

It is always rewarding to reflect on events and people in our lives that have been influential in our personal and professional development. When I think of the IGCS meetings I have attended in the past thirty years, I’m reminded of the experiences I’ve had and people I’ve met that have shaped my life and career.

Thirty years ago, IGCS held its first Biennial Meeting – our flagship event. From a small but ambitious society in 1987 with less than four hundred attendees in Amsterdam, we have grown and become truly global, our meetings drawing more attendees each decade. With our history of success and potential for growth in mind, the IGCS Council has been deliberating the pros and cons of increasing the frequency of our society meeting from once every two years to an annual conference occurring each year.

Traditionally, we have rotated the meeting sites between the Americas, Europe and Asia/Oceania, meaning each region has been hosting a meeting approximately every sixth year. Moving to a yearly event will allow us to bring our meeting to more geographic locations with more frequency, providing you with more opportunities to share your research, collaborate with colleagues and receive education from global leaders.

The IGCS Council has spent a tremendous amount of time over the last nine months reviewing options with Kenes Group, our conference management partner, examining our meetings data from the last 8 years. We reviewed attendance from the regions where IGCS-sponsored meetings have been conducted, discussed potential locations for future meetings, and received insights for marketing and communicating this change to our members and broader audience.

With the success of our Strategic Alliance Partnership Membership Expansion Program, we are realizing that our new partners have a strong desire to collaborate to develop and receive education, training and access to to global cancer care community. These growing partnerships will benefit from additional meetings to provide opportunities for our members to network, gain a sense of community, receive enhanced education, and increase the opportunity to present their work.

With that being said, I am excited to announce that the IGCS will begin hosting an annual conference starting in 2019 – and the first site will be Rio de Janeiro, Brazil!

As IGCS looks ahead to another thirty years as the global voice for gynecologic oncology, moving to an annual meeting will undoubtedly help us meet the needs of ALL IGCS members. I am confident that you will be as supportive of these more frequent meetings as you have in the past. I have attended all 16 meetings over the last 30 years and cannot speak highly enough of the personal and professional benefits I have received as a result. IGCS is the only women’s cancer society whose mission is truly international, focusing on all socioeconomic areas from the richest to the poorest. I hope that membership is becoming increasingly rewarding for you as we expand our teaching and training portfolio and attract new members from across the world.

It has been a very busy first year of my presidency, and it has been incredibly rewarding to become further acquainted with my international colleagues and better understand the needs and burden of disease in your regions. I am confident that more frequent IGCS meetings occurring in more areas of the globe will bring more opportunities and have a positive outcome for our members and the women they care for.

I invite you to reflect on the impact the IGCS community has had on you and continue to take advantage of the opportunities that await you through IGCS meetings, programs and member benefits. I welcome any questions or feedback on this exciting and important shift for our society. Please feel free to contact me at quinnmichaelam@gmail.com.

I hope to see you in Kyoto next year, Rio in 2019 and at future IGCS meetings to come!

Sincerely,

Michael Quinn, MA, MGO
2016-2018 IGCS President

 

Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program

Dear Colleagues,

In December 2016, we announced the launch of the Gynecologic Oncology Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program, a comprehensive two-year education and training program designed for regions around the world that do not currently have formal training in gynecologic oncology. As a global society, our mission is to enhance the care of women with gynecologic cancer worldwide through education and training and public awareness. The Gynecologic Oncology Global Curriculum & Mentorship Program will further this mission by training a new generation of gynecologic oncologists.

With extensive input from Linus Chuang, Joe Ng and Tom Randall, the objectives of the Program have been formalized and a comprehensive web-based curriculum developed. The curriculum is adaptable by each site to reflect the local needs and resources. The Program’s structure is as follows:

  • Trainees from countries without formal gynecologic oncology training (Global Gynecologic Oncology Fellows) are selected and paired with fully trained gynecologic oncologist(s) from a mentoring institution in a country with formal training (International Mentor(s)) as well as a Local Mentor from their home program.
  • The fellows complete case lists and have monthly virtual meetings with their International Mentor(s).
  • Monthly tumor boards are held utilizing Project ECHO, where the fellows and mentors review cases and participate in ongoing learning and mentoring opportunities.
  • The International Mentors travel to the fellow’s institution at least twice per year for hands-on surgical training and in-person teaching.
  • The fellow travels to the International Mentor’s institution for up to three months of training and education.
  • Fellows complete a final exam that include a written exam, oral exam and surgical/clinical skills assessment.
  • Fellows receive a certificate following completion of the two-year training program and successfully completing the exam.

Five pilot sites launched the program in 2017:

Da Nang Oncology Hospital, Vietnam
Mentors: Tri Dinh (Mayo Clinic Jacksonville, USA) & Joe Ng (National University Cancer Institute, Singapore)

Hospital Central de Maputo, Mozambique
Mentors: Georgia Fontes Cintra (Barretos Cancer Hospital, Brazil), Renato Moretti (Hospital Israelita Albert Einstein, Brazil), Kathleen Schmleler (MD Anderson Cancer Center, USA)

The University of the West Indies (Jamaica, Bahamas, Barbados, Trinidad & Tobago)
Mentors: Matthew Schlumbrecht & Brian Slomovitz (University of Miami, USA)

St. Paul’s Hospital & Black Lion Hospital, Ethiopia
Mentors: Rahel Ghebre (University of Minnesota, USA) & Carolyn Johnston (University of Michigan, USA)

Moi University, Kenya
Mentors: Barry Rosen (Beaumont Oakland University USA) & Al Covens (University of Toronto, Canada)

The International Mentors have been traveling regularly to the global sites to launch the programs and provide training and education. Tumor boards utilizing Project ECHO have started in Vietnam and Mozambique with cases presented by the Global Fellows and feedback, guidance and mentoring provided by the Local and International Mentors as well as IGCS member volunteers. Project ECHO tumor boards will begin in the West Indies, Kenya, and Ethiopia this fall. We are planning to expand the program to additional sites in 2018 including Fiji (mentored by New Zealand), Guatemala (mentored by Colombia) and Liberia (mentored by USA).

The IGCS is fortunate to have a large membership that strives to continually improve the gynecologic cancer prevention and treatment globally. We encourage you to go to the Global Curriculum page on the IGCS website for more information about each of our sites. For more information about the program, please contact Allie Rubeo, Education Program Manager at allie.rubeo@igcs.org.

Sincerely,

Michael Quinn, AM, MGO
IGCS President

 

 

 

Kathleen Schmeler, MD
IGCS Education Committee Chair

IGCS 2018 Website Available

The website for the 2018 IGCS Meeting, being held in conjunction with the Japanese Society of Gynecologic Oncology (JSGO) is now available: http://www.igcs2018.com/ 

The website provides information about abstract submission, registration, sponsorship and exhibits and more. Learn about the city of Kyoto, a beautiful and hospitable destination, perfect for the IGCS Meeting.

Another announcement will be made when abstract submission is open.

Pedro Ramirez to serve as the new IJGC Editor-in-Chief

Dear Colleague,

We are pleased to announce Pedro T. Ramirez, MD has been selected as the new Editor in Chief of the International Journal for Gynecological Cancer. He will serve as Deputy Editor-in-Chief until December 2018 when Dr. Uzi Beller steps down.

Earlier this year, we jointly conducted a search for a new Editor-in-Chief of our journal, the International Journal of Gynecologic Cancer (IJGC). Dr. Uzi Beller made the decision to step down from the position after more than ten years of service and we were tasked to find a candidate to continue the stellar work that he and the Editorial Board have been doing for over a decade.

We established a joint Search Committee comprised of IGCS and ESGO members and hired a third-party consultant (KWF Consulting) to facilitate the search. Several excellent candidates submitted applications and ultimately, three outstanding candidates were selected to be interviewed. The Search Committee decided that Dr. Ramirez was the best candidate to fill the position, impressed with his vision for the journal and extensive experience in both editorial board and associate editor roles. Please view this video Dr. Ramirez has recorded to share his thoughts on the future direction of IJGC.

Dr. Pedro T. Ramirez is a Professor in the Department of Gynecologic Oncology and Reproductive Medicine at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. He is also the David M. Gershenson Distinguished Professor in Ovarian Cancer Research Endowment and Director of Minimally Invasive Surgical Research & Education. Dr. Ramirez is also the Director of the Enhanced Recovery After Surgery Program in Gynecologic Oncology. He has published over 200 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals and has also authored a total of 19 book chapters. In addition, he is the Editor for an upcoming textbook titled Principles of Gynecologic Oncology Surgery. He recently served as Associate Editor for the Journal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology and has been working on the Editorial Board of the journal Gynecologic Oncology.

Dr. Ramirez will serve as Deputy Editor of IJGC until June 30, 2018, when he will then become the Editor-in-Chief and serve a five-year term. We acknowledge the many years of exceptional work done by Dr. Uzi Beller and his editorial team. Under his direction, the impact factor has risen steadily and the time to publication of newly submitted articles dramatically shortened. Thanks to these endeavors, Dr. Ramirez is well positioned to build on past successes and continue the work of making IJGC the best it can be.

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Ramirez and wish him well as he begins to build his editorial team and assume the role of Editor-in-Chief of our Journal. We look forward to contributing and reading future issues of IJGC and we are certain you, the members of our organizations, feel the same.

Sincerely,

 
Michael Quinn, AM, MGO
IGCS President 
 
David Cibula, MD, PhD
ESGO President 

Awards & Recognition

August, 2017: Dr. Andreas Obermair (IGCS Secretary-Treasurer Elect) and Ms. Paula Benson received the 2017 Jeannie Ferris Cancer Australia Recognition Award for their outstanding contributions to improving outcomes for women with gynaecological cancers. Read more about this award.

 

 

 

 

IGCS celebrates the awards and recognition of its members. If you have recently received an award or know someone who has, please let us know by emailing Debbie.leopold@igcs.org.