Six Feldman lung cancer studies featured at ASCO

University of Illinois Cancer Center member Dr. Lawrence Feldman will show how mandatory molecular testing in a minority population improves the treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) at the 2021 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting, held virtually June 4-8.

Feldman and his collaborators are presenting the results of six research studies focused on lung cancer at the conference. Black Americans have the highest incidence of lung cancer and compromise a large percentage of the patient population treated at the University of Illinois Cancer Center.

Patients with NSCLC are routinely tested for the common biomarkers EGFR, ALK and PD-L1 prior to beginning therapy and the results can help determine treatment plans. Feldman and his team selected 80 adult patients diagnosed with stage IV NSCLC between 2015 and 2019 to measure the frequency of testing for biomarkers EGFR, ALK and PD-L1. A significant increase in regularity was found during the four-year span, Feldman said.

Feldman found testing for changes in EGFR and ALK occurred in 88% and 86% of patients, respectively. At 50%, however, the newer required test of PD-L1 was more challenging to implement. Over the course of the study period, the median time from diagnostic biopsy to PD-L1 decreased from more than 12 weeks in 2015 and 2016 to two weeks in 2018 and 2019, he said.

“Our study highlights the need for increased biomarker testing in new stage IV non-small cell lung cancer, particularly for PD-L1, and there’s a need to determine strategies for comprehensive and timely biomarker testing in advanced NSCLC,” Feldman said. “Molecular biomarkers have dramatically changed the way advanced disease is treated, and while our study looked at three common biomarkers, we now have 10 molecular mutations that can be targeted by specific drugs.”

In addition to Feldman’s biomarker study, he and his colleagues will present:

  • A Phase I trial of plinabulin in combination with nivolumab and ipilimumab in patients with relapsed small cell lung cancer (SCLC). Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium (BTCRC-LUN17-127) study. ASCO Abstract: 8570. Read more
  • A randomized Phase II trial of adjuvant pembrolizumab versus observation following curative resection for stage I non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with primary tumors between 1 to 4 centimeters: Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium. BTCRC-LUN18-153. ASCO abstract: 8583. Read more
  • Phase II trial of atezolizumab (A) + carboplatin (C) + pemetrexed (P) + bevacizumab (B) in points with stage IV non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer (NSq-NSCLC): Big Ten Cancer Research Consortium Study LUN 17-139. ASCO abstract: 9034. Read more
  • Patient-reported benefits and burdens of direct oral-anticoagulants (DOACs) and low molecular weight heparins (LMWHs): The CANVAS pragmatic randomized trial (AFT-28). ASCO abstract: 12112. Read more
  • The comparative effectiveness of direct oral anti-coagulants and low molecular weight heparins for prevention of recurrent venous thromboembolism in cancer. The CANVAS pragmatic randomized trial. ASCO abstract: 12020. Read more
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