Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Prostate Cancer: New drugs in the post “Abiraterone-Jevtana-Provenge” world

The success of three new drugs (Abiraterone, Jevtana and Provenge) for castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC) this year, each targeting different pathways, and all showing an overall survival benefit, has raised the bar for those dreaming to join the club.  There is at least one riding the popularity vote, MDV3100, which may complete phase 3 next year.  Still, many struggle and plough through phase  1 and 2.  One way to understand, what may make some of them unique – and the reason they may evolve into serious competition one day – is to lay them out in separate classes or targets.  This is what I have done below.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Lilly's Oncology On Canvas(SM)

The two sides of cancer triangle are modern "wonder drugs" that zero in to the tumor lumps and rogue metastatic cells and, second, multiple approaches directly addressing the nasty chemotherapeutic side effects.  The critical third element is "emotional management."  This is where, since 2004, Lilly Oncology on Canvas(SM), co-sponsored by the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship (NCCS), has been helping patients, their caregivers and healthcare providers, their family and friends, by providing a forum to express, share and come to grips with the life altering changes that come with the diagnosis of cancer. (read more here, watch on youtube)

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Cancer drugs RIPed in 2010

Four of the top ten Phase III failures of 2010 that were listed at FierceBiotech on Oct 21st are cancer drugs, and that's a big number!

Reducing chemotoxicity - Herbs to the rescue!

"Herbal medicine reduces chemotherapy toxicity," this headline in the "highlights" section of the latest issue of Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, caught my attention.  This was the first time, I saw "herbs" casted in a positive light re: cancer care -- completely opposite to the establishment's stream-rolled opinion that herbs, generally speaking, interfere in unknown ways with current allopathic medications and medical care.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Ever heard of Pecha-Kucha, I just did

Cancer is (NOT) a modern, man-made disease

Last week, what started as a press release by the University of Manchester to publicize an opinion article by its faculty, and picked up by some ‘reputable' media (like Telegraph), led to a tsunami of rebuttals and jabs all over the blogosphere.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Pfizer Makes Move Into Biologic Drugs (NYTimes)

NY Times October 18, 2010, 12:05 pm
Pfizer Makes Move Into Biologic Drugs

Making a new move into the fledgling market for generic biotech drugs, pharmaceutical giant Pfizer has acquired worldwide rights to sell human insulin and insulin analogs being developed by Biocon, one of India’s largest biotech companies. (Read More: . . . that since the pathway for biogenerics has not yet been established, Biocon plans to conduct a phase 3 clinical trial of its insulin and to seek approval under an existing pathway known as rule 505(b)(2).

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Can we check off thyroid cancer as a conquered disease? Maybe not!

Yesterday, I came across Carolyn Sayre's entry, The Rising Incidence of Thyroid Cancer.  As I scanned through the article, my brain was filled with conflicting conclusions. 

Friday, October 15, 2010

Five year anniversary of Nexavar® (sorafenib) approval by FDA

In about two months, five days before Christmas, sorafenib will celebrate five years of approval by the FDA.  When it was approved on December 20th, 2005, for advanced Renal Cell Carcinoma (RCC), it was the first (and is so far the only) approved drug to target B-Raf kinase, a signaling component of the MAPK pathway.  Since then it has also been approved for Hepatocellular Carcinoma (HCC).

Thursday, October 14, 2010

And the three co-winners in the 2010 race to beat Metastatic Advanced Prostate Cancer are Abiraterone, Jevtana and Provenge

Following the results of a randomized, placebo-controlled Phase 3 study COU-AA-301  released at the 35th Annual European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) Congress on October 11, 2010 (ESMO abstract LBA5), abiraterone has emerged as a third new treatment option for metastatic advanced prostate cancer (also referred to as hormone-refractory or castration-resistant prostate cancer [HRPC or CRPC]) this year. 

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Old Drugs have a lot more Firepower

Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ:CELG) was in the news a few months ago for buying Abraxis BioScience for 2.9 billion (read: A Billionaire’s Biotech Deal And Old Drugs Reborn at, or Prominent Drug Chief to Sell Abraxis BioScience to Celgene for $2.9 Billion at  With this purchase, Celgene has become a big player in the  Oncology biz-space with two re-incarnated drugs: