The Lynx Group

May 2012, Vol 3, No 3

The Mevion S250 Proton Therapy System has received marketing approval in Europe but is still pending clearance by the US Food and Drug Administration.
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Injecting antibodies and T cells with cancer stem cells may signal a new paradigm for anticancer immunotherapy, according to a recent study.
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The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), has awarded $10.5 million to 10 researchers to develop technologies that will assist research on millions of genomic elements that play a role in determining what genes are expressed, and at what levels in different cells.
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Genomic Health announced it has formed an alliance with OncoMed Pharmaceuticals to support the development of DNA-sequencing technologies in the search for diagnostic biomarkers that could identify patients who will best benefit from targeted drugs currently in development by OncoMed.
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A recent survey of US and Canadian oncologists explored how they perceive cost-effectiveness of the new and costly cancer treatments, and whether providers are considering value questions of quality versus cost in their clinical decisions.
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The National Institutes of Health (NIH) convened a State-of-the-Science Conference to assess the evidence regarding observational strategies as an alternative to immediate treatment for localized prostate cancer (Ganz PA, et al. Ann Intern Med. 2012;156:591- 595).
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Controversy abounds regarding the question of whether routine prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing reduces mortality from prostate cancer.
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Cancer is the most dreaded of all diseases, the authors of a new study suggest, which may explain why policymakers have sometimes given cancer therapies preferential status over therapies for other conditions (Neumann PJ, et al. Health Aff [Millwood]. 2012;31:700-708).
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The United States spends more on cancer care than European countries. Some people have argued that this extra expense is unwarranted, because US patients with cancer have similar or worse outcomes despite this increased spending. However, data from a new study suggest that the higher spending for cancer in the United States than in 10 European countries may be worth the additional expense (Philipson T, et al. Health Aff [Millwood]. 2012;31:667-675).
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The FDA accelerated the approval of the oral mTOR kinase inhibitor everolimus (Afinitor; Novartis) for the treatment of kidney tumors (ie, renal angiomyolipomas) not requiring immediate surgery in patients with tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC).
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