Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer
Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Emphasizing Oncogeriatrics

A Q&A with Nicolò Matteo Luca Battisti, MD, Medical Oncologist at The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust, London, United Kingdom, and Chair of the Young Interest Group of the International Society of Geriatric Oncology (SIOG); nicolo.battisti@gmail.com Q: Everyone knows that the practice of pediatric oncology is very different from adult oncology. How does the growing […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Fixed and Variable Factors that Impact a Brain Tumor Patient’s Prognosis

A Q&A with Burt Nabors, MD, Professor and Director of the Division of Neuro-oncology at the University of Alabama, Birmingham, and a member of the Cancer Commons Brain Tumor Advisory Board; bnabors@uabmc.edu Q: Primary brain gliomas can be devastating, often deadly, malignancies. Obvious prognostic factors include whether they are grade 1, 2, 3, or 4; […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Treat Uveal Melanoma that Recurs in the Liver?

A Q&A with Emma Shtivelman, PhD, Chief Scientist at Cancer Commons; emma@cancercommons.org Q: Malignant melanoma may arise from multiple sites, including the eye. What would you recommend be done for a 50-year-old man in the San Francisco Bay Area who was entirely well for nine years after undergoing enucleation surgery for a large uveal melanoma, but has […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Importance of Brain Tumor-Initiating Cells in Glioblastoma

A Q&A with Anita Hjelmeland, PhD, Associate Professor of Cell, Developmental and Integrative Biology at the University of Alabama Birmingham School of Medicine Q: The inner workings of malignant gliomas are mysterious to many of us. Why does the prognosis of patients with these tumors remain poor? A: Glioblastoma is a primary brain tumor that is […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Navigating Pancreatic Cancer—The Basics

A Q&A with Lola Rahib, PhD, Lead Scientist, Pancreas Cancer, at Cancer Commons, Los Altos, CA Q: Navigating a pancreatic cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming and confusing for patients and their loved ones. How can patients and their caregivers ensure having the knowledge, support, and plan they need to be able to navigate treatment options […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Serious Caveats in Screening for Pancreatic Cancer

A Q&A with Rama Gullapalli, MD, PhD; a a physician-scientist in the departments of Pathology, Chemical and Biological Engineering at the University of New Mexico. His research lab focuses on the role of the environment in hepatobiliary cancers. He is also a practicing molecular pathologist with an interest in emerging molecular diagnostics, next generation sequencing […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Encouraging and Paying for Clinical Trials, Right to Try, and Expanded Access: Part Three

A Q&A with Mark Shapiro, PhD,Vice President of Clinical Development at xCures, Inc., Partner at Pharma Initiatives; mshapiro@xcures.com. This is the final installment in a three-part series in which Dr. Shapiro has shared his thoughts on the question below. Read part 1 and part 2. Q: Treatment of Americans with advanced cancer is complex and challenging and can be very expensive. Many urge greater […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Encouraging and Paying for Clinical Trials, Right to Try, and Expanded Access: Part Two

A Q&A with Mark Shapiro, PhD,Vice President of Clinical Development at xCures, Inc., Partner at Pharma Initiatives; mshapiro@xcures.com. Last week, Dr. Shapiro shared his initial thoughts on the question below. Today, he discusses issues of cost and equitable access to care. Q: Treatment of Americans with advanced cancer is complex and challenging and can be very expensive. Many urge greater participation of such […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Encouraging and Paying for Clinical Trials, Right to Try, and Expanded Access: Part One

A Q&A with Mark Shapiro, PhD,Vice President of Clinical Development at xCures, Inc., Partner at Pharma Initiatives; mshapiro@xcures.com Q: Treatment of Americans with advanced cancer is complex and challenging and can be very expensive. Many urge greater participation of such patients in clinical trials. In general, who pays the expenses of clinical trials? And, specifically, how are the costs for Right […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

At Diagnosis, What Do Cancer Patients Want?

A Q&A with Laura Benson, RN, MS, ANP, president of Conversations in Care, LLC; LauraBensonRN@Gmail.com Q: In our digital communication world of 2019, some patients may receive the initial message that YOU HAVE CANCER by cell phone, text, email, or even voice mail. When this happens, what do patients most want, and how can that best be […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Capturing Patients’ Real-World Experiences to Improve Cancer Research and Care

A Q&A with Grace Castillo-Soyao, founder and CEO of Self Care Catalysts; grace@selfcarecatalysts.com Q: You are well known as a visionary in the field of Real World Experience-Evidence (RWEE). As the founder and CEO of Self Care Catalysts, headquartered in Toronto, how do you see RWEE evolving to favorably impact the field of oncology? A: I started […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Crucial 90% Missed by Doctors on Computers

A Q&A with Kevin B. Knopf MD, MPH, chairman of hematology and oncology at Highland Hospital in Oakland, California; kevinbknopf@gmail.com Q: A successful patient-physician relationship depends upon effective bidirectional attention and mutual understanding. Many patients and physicians believe that common current versions of mandated electronic health records (EHRs) severely impede that interaction, especially eye contact. […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Promise of Plerixafor in Glioblastoma Treatment

A Q&A with Adan Rios, MD; Professor in the Division of Oncology-Department of Internal Medicine of The University of Texas McGovern Medical School at Houston, Texas Medical Center; adan.rios@uth.tmc.edu Q: Glioblastoma multiforme (GBM) remains a scourge with a typically rapid fatal course resistant to most therapy. All solid tumors must receive sufficient blood supply to grow. Plerixafor […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Might Cancer Be a Metabolic Disease?

A Q&A with Thomas N. Seyfried, PhD, Professor of Biology, Boston College Q: As a geneticist, you know that the genomic makeup of cancers recently has captivated much of the scientific community with new knowledge and new treatments. And yet, cancer outcomes remain dismal for many patients. You have written about cancer from a very […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Why the 21st Century Cures Act is a Good Thing

A Q&A with Mary Woolley, President and CEO of Research!America Q: You attended the December 2016 signing by President Obama of the 21st Century Cures Act and are recognized to be a strong supporter. Yet harsh criticism of it has quickly appeared in JAMA, BMJ, a variety of other venues, as well as on these […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Options to Treat a Glioblastoma

A Q&A with Al Musella, DPM, President, Musella Foundation For Brain Tumor Research & Information, Inc., Hewlett, NY; email: musella@virtualtrials.com, phone: 888-295-4740 Q: You direct an established foundation that supports research and information about brain tumors. What would you do if you yourself were diagnosed with a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)? A: Now that GBMs are […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Patient-Reported Outcomes Could Transform Cancer Care

A Q&A with Jared Adams MD, PhD, Chief Science Officer at Self Care Catalysts; jared@selfcarecatalysts.com Q: Patient-reported outcomes (PROs) are health care outcomes, such as symptoms or quality of life, reported directly by a patient. In recent years, PROs have emerged as a potentially powerful new way to understand cancer outcomes. Could PROs lead to […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Cancer Pain and the Opioid Epidemic

A Q&A with Kevin Sevarino, MD, PhD, President-elect of the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry and Consulting Psychiatrist at Gaylord Hospital in Wallingford, CT Q: Opioid abuse, addiction, and overdose are huge American problems right now. Many cancer patients experience chronic pain. What is the best way to use opioids to manage chronic pain? [Note: The […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Tell a Patient Their Cancer Has Spread

A Q&A with crisis communication expert Lisa Dinhofer, MA, CT Q. As a counselor and communicator, you are expert and experienced in managing serious situational difficulties up to and including coping with sudden unexpected death. How would you think it best to approach a person with cancer who is being told, “your cancer has spread”? […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Cancer Staging: Important Work of the AJCC

Jeffrey E. Gershenwald, MD, FACS, Dr. John M. Skibbter Professor, Dept. of Surgical Oncology; Professor, Department of Cancer Biology; Medical Director, Melanoma and Skin Center, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX; Member, American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) Executive Committee; Member, AJCC Eighth Edition Editorial Board (Melanoma Expert Panel & Content […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Foundation Medicine, CMS, FDA, CAP and Academic Molecular Pathology: A Clash of Values

Karen Kaul MD, PhD, Chair, Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, NorthShore University HealthSystem; , Duckworth Family Chair of Molecular Pathology; Clinical Professor of Pathology, University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine; Chicago, IL; Email: KKaul@northshore.org Q: The field of precision oncology continues to seek clear guidance on payment for both molecular testing and resulting […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Do you have pain, cancer, or diabetes? Your PBM may now be your doctor for these illnesses.

Charles L. Bennett MD PhD MPP, Smart State and Frank P and Jose M Fletcher Chair, Medication Safety and Efficacy, Smart State Center of Economic Excellence, University of South Carolina and the Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina; Charleston, South Carolina; Email: charlesleebennett@gmail.com Q: The opioid epidemic is now a public […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Using High Content Imaging for Biomarker Discovery to Support Precision Oncology

Gavin J. Gordon, MBA, PhD, Vice President of Commercial Operations at Fluidigm Corporation, South San Francisco, CA Email: gavin.gordon@fluidigm.com Q: Huge new advances in technology continue to illuminate the research and translational space. How do you think your new product the Hyperion Imaging System is likely to influence precision medicine testing? A: The Hyperion™ Imaging System* is […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Challenging Oncology Therapies With Moonshot Price Tags

Pramod John, PhD, CEO, VIVIO Health, San Leandro, CA; Email: pramod@viviohealth.com Q: Some American pharmaceutical companies are well-known for pricing drugs at “whatever the market will bear”. In oncology, some specialty drugs seem to have price tags completely unrelated to the proven effectiveness of the drug. Your company has been taking a lead in confronting […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Accuracy and Precision Define Radiation Oncology

Eddy Yang, MD, PhD, Professor and Vice Chair of Translational Sciences Department of Radiation Oncology; Deputy Director, Associate Director of Precision Oncology at the Hugh Kaul Precision Medicine Institute; Birmingham, AL; Email: shyang@uabmc.edu Q: You are a radiation oncologist with a particular interest in cancer of the prostate. How does the molecular study of prostate, as […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Precision Oncology in the UK in 2017

Justin Stebbing, MA FRCP FRCPath PhD, Professor of Cancer Medicine and Medical Oncology at the Imperial College/Imperial Healthcare NHS Trust Charing Cross Hospital, London, UK; Email: j.stebbing@imperial.ac.uk Q: Science is universal but the practice of medicine varies widely by geography, economics, and culture. The United Kingdom is an advanced developed country with universal healthcare. How […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Using Data Analytics to Make an Impact in Brain Cancer

Lisandra West-Odell, PhD, Scientist and Product Manager, Cancer Commons, Los Altos, CA; Email: lisandra@cancercommons.org Q: Reflecting the current reality of a brain cancer diagnosis, how can Cancer Commonspositively impact the treatment and outcome of each patient diagnosed with brain cancer? A: Just over two and a half years ago the March 30, 2015 issue of Time […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Life After Oncology

Professor Michael Baum, Professor Emeritus of Surgery & Visiting Professor of Medical Humanities, University College, London, UK; Email: baum.michael3@gmail.com Q: You have recently decided to “withdraw from the field” after a distinguished multi-decade career in Surgical Oncology. Many of our readers will confront a similar choice. How do you see your life evolving from here […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Huge Progress in Palliative Care

Diane E. Meier, MD, FACP, Director, Center to Advance Palliative Care; Professor of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai; New York, NY; Email: diane.meier@mssm.edu Q: You wrote in MedGenMed in 2007 that palliative care was the job of all hospitals(MedGenMed 2007; 9(3) 6. July 7. PMCID:PMC2100088). In October 2017 you were […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How I Survive Cancer

Erin Maloney, Intrepid explorer, Amateur photographer, Aspiring leader; Toronto, ON; Email: erinLmaloney@gmail.com Q: You have recently disclosed that you have had a diagnosis of cancer and described your experience in some detail on Medium. What does it mean to you to be a “Cancer Survivor”? A: Calling myself a survivor sometimes feels like an exaggeration. In […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Who Owns Patient Data in Clinical Research?

Charlotte J. Haug, MD, PhD, MSc, International Correspondent, New England Journal of Medicine; Senior Scientist, SINTEF Techology and Society; Adjunct Affiliate, Stanford Health Policy; Oslo, Norway; Email: charlottejohanne@gmail.com Q: Many people are coming to believe that active patient participation will be a key to more rapid movement forward in cancer research. Data sharing can help. But who owns […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Nicotine Addiction: Harm Reduction by E-cigarettes and Snus

Joel L. Nitzkin, MD, Public Health Physician, New Orleans, LA Email: jlnitzkin@gmail.com Q: Tobacco smoking remains the most preventable primary form of cancer causation in Americans. A recent Medscape column urged that harm reduction for confirmed nicotine addicts is the kindest and most effective strategy. How can products like “snus” be helpful? A: As noted by Dr. […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Pharmacogenomics for Clinical Use of Cannabis

Saeed K. Alzghari, M.S., M.B.A. (HOM), Pharm.D., BCPS, Director of Clinical Pharmacy, Gulfstream Genomics, LLC., Dallas, TX; Email: salzghari@gulfdiagnostics.com Q: Proper use of Pharmacogenomics can inform better patient care in many potential ways. Pain relief by use of Cannabis instead of opioids shows substantial promise. How do you think pharmacogenomic study could guide intelligent clinical […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Public Health Personalized Medicine

Gualberto Ruaño, MD, PhD, President, Genomas Inc.; Medical Director, Laboratory of Personalized Health; Hartford, CT; Email: g.ruano@genomas.net Q: Public participation by contributing specimens to assess personal genomic information is rapidly increasing. How might this expansion of testing become actually useful for the health of the public? A: The fields of public health and medicine share a […]

CDG at TLI

Psychiatric Drug Use by Medical Students and Residents

Pamela Wible, MD, Founder of the Ideal Medical Care movement; Author of Physician Suicide Letters—Answered; Family medicine practitioner in Oregon; Q: Medical students and residents are among the most important human resources in the United States. Yet we lose many during training due to suicide. Have you information you can share with our readers about the mental health […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Worst Phony Cancer Cures

Stephen Barrett, MD, Retired Psychiatrist; Medical Editor for Quackwatch.org and 24 other consumer-protection Web sites; Publisher for Consumer Health Digest; Chapel Hill, NC; Email: sbinfo@quackwatch.org Q: Who tops your list as the most brazen promoters of phony cancer cures in the past 25 years? A: Three people come to mind: Gregory Caplinger, Hulda Clark, and […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Nordic Country Tobacco Control

Astrid Nylenna, MD, Acting Head of Department, Department of Global Health, Norwegian Directorate of Health, Oslo, Norway; Email: Astrid.Nylenna@helsedir.no Q: Norway has been very active in tobacco control and prevention with some success. To what do you attribute the success Norway has had and are there any lessons from other Scandinavian countries that might be […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Surprise: Vitamin K2 and Cancer

Micki Jacobs, Independent Researcher, Dayton, OH; Email: mickijacobs@yahoo.com Q: You know a great deal about Vitamin K2 and its precursors in human health and disease. What is the best evidence of any value of Vitamin K2, Menadione, Menaquinone-4, and Menaquinone-7 in the prevention or treatment of any forms of cancer? A: Evidence and interest for […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Precision Medicine in the Universal Healthcare System in the Netherlands

Jack A. Schalken, PhD, Professor of Experimental Urology, Radboud University Medical Center, Nijmegen, NL Email: Jack.Schalken@radboudumc.nl Q: Science is universal but the practice of medicine varies widely by geography, economics, and culture. The Netherlands is an advanced developed country with universal healthcare. How does your country approach the issue of precision or molecular oncology? A: The […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Role of “Rapid Science” in Facilitating and Rewarding Collaboration in Biomedical Research

Sarah Greene, MS, Chief Executive Officer, Rapid Science, Brooklyn, NY; Email sg@rapidscience.org Q: You are the leader of Rapid Science, an innovative initiative intended to speed up the process of research and validation of new information, and its use in practice, especially in Cancer. Can you explain this effort briefly for our readers, particularly that […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Q&A: Air Traffic Control for Cancer

David K. Cundiff, MD, Retired internist and palliative care physician from LA County + USC Medical Center; Email: dkcundiff@whistleblowerdoctor.org. Jeff Shrager, PhD, Director of Research, Cancer Commons; Adjunct Professor, Symbolic Systems Program, Stanford University; Email: jshrager@gmail.com. Q: After May 17, 2017, you and Jeff Shrager engaged in a robust discussion about the place, if any, for an […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Options to Treat a Glioblastoma

Al Musella, DPM, President, Musella Foundation For Brain Tumor Research & Information, Inc., Hewlett, NY; Email: musella@virtualtrials.com Phone: 888-295-4740 Q: You direct an established foundation that supports research and information about brain tumors. What would you do if you yourself were diagnosed with a glioblastoma multiforme (GBM)? A: Now that GBMs are in the news […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Lung Cancer Screening…The Clock is Ticking

Paul R Billings MD, PhD, CEO and Chairman of Synergenz LTD Q: Lung cancer screening of smokers (spiral CT over 3 years) is paid for by CMS (reimbursement), has a B endorsement from USPTF (method endorsement), and lots of NEJM papers (academic evidence). As many as 8M eligibles noted since 2012. No more than 400K […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Value of Molecular Disease Models for Cancer Treatment Planning

Smruti Vidwans, PhD, Chief Science Officer at CollabRx Q: You have been notified that your article entitled “A Melanoma Molecular Disease Model” is among the top 10% of most cited articles in 10 years at PLOS ONE. Congratulations. What is the essence of that paper, why it is important, and what has changed in the […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Initiate Treatment for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia March 2016 vs July 2017

Jerald P. Radich, MD, Director of the Molecular Oncology Lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine Q: In March 2016, we published your blog about how to initiate therapy for an adult patient newly diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). As of July 2017, […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Initiate Treatment for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia March 2016 vs July 2017

Jerald P. Radich, MD, Director of the Molecular Oncology Lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine Q: In March 2016, we published your blog about how to initiate therapy for an adult patient newly diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML). As of July 2017, […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Treat Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Bassel El-Rayes, MD, Professor and Vice Chair for Clinical Research, Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, Associate Director for Clinical Research, and Director of the Gastrointestinal Oncology Program Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University Q: You have just received a new patient, referred to you from Macon, GA. She is a 52-year-old white woman in good […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

You, Me, and 23: DTC Gene Tests

Melinda Roberts, Web and Product Development Lead Globiana Inc. Q: Many people are interested in their own genes and wonder whether they are predisposed to cancer or other maladies.  You recently participated in the “23 and me” testing process. As a well-educated and informed consumer, did you find that service useful? Were the explanations given sufficient? […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Leading Retractions in the Cancer Research Literature

Ivan Oransky, MD, is co-founder of Retraction Watch. Oransky is Distinguished Writer In Residence at New York University’s Arthur Carter Journalism Institute, and editor at large of MedPage Today. Adam Marcus is also co-founder of Retraction Watch. Oransky is Distinguished Writer In Residence at New York University’s Arthur Carter Journalism Institute, and managing editor of Gastroenterology & Endoscopy […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Treating Metastatic Malignant Melanoma, March 2016 vs April 2017

Keith Flaherty, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Director of Developmental Therapeutics, Cancer Center, Massachusetts General Hospital Q: A lot has happened in the field of Metastatic Melanoma since March, 2016. In April of 2017, would your reply be any different? If so, in what way, and why? A: The only change from 2016 […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Is the PBM Now Your Doctor?

Charles Bennett, MD, PhD, MPP, Smart State and Frank P and Jose M Fletcher Chair, Medication Safety and Efficacy, Smart State Center of Economic Excellence, University of South Carolina and the Hollings National Cancer Institute Designated Cancer Center of the Medical University of South Carolina, Charleston, South Carolina. William Hrushesky, MD, FACP, Founder and Chief Scientific […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Preventing Breast Cancer: Research Worth Watching

Susan Love, MD, MBA Chief Visionary Officer, Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation, Encino, CA Q: The goal of the Dr Susan Love Research Foundation is “…..to find the cause of breast cancer and prevent it now – before it starts”. What are some of the ongoing research studies that are worth watching? A: Challenging the […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

2017 USPSTF on PSA: A Bad Idea

Richard J. Ablin, Ph.D., D.Sc. (hon), Dr. h.c. Professor, Department of Pathology, University of Arizona College of Medicine, The Arizona Cancer Center and BIO5 Institute, Tucson, AZ 85724. Ronald Piana, Freelance Science Writer, Huntington, NY 11743 Q: The new draft USPSTF recommendations for rapid comment on use of PSA for screening represent a big change from […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Big 2017 Change on PSA by USPSTF

Marc B Garnick, MD, Editor in Chief, HMS Annual Report on Prostate Diseases; Gorman Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA . E. David Crawford, MD, Professor of Urology and Radiation Oncology at The University of Colorado, Anschutz Campus, Aurora, CO; Medical Advisor and Founder, 3DBiopsy, Inc., Aurora, CO Q: […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Forget Moonshots: Biomedicine Needs an Air Traffic Control System

Jeff Shrager, PhD, Director of Research, Cancer Commons; Adjunct Professor, Symbolic Systems Program, Stanford University Q: There never seem to be enough patients matched to cancer clinical trials to quickly test new cancer treatments. Might there be a better way, using new communication technology? A: Among the few things that everyone can agree upon, one is […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Proposed FDA “Conditional Approval”- More Details

Al Musella, DPM, President, Musella Foundation For Brain Tumor Research & Information, Inc., Hewlett, NY. Marty Tenenbaum, PhD, Founder and Chair, Cancer Commons, Los Altos, CA. Q: Your April 5, 2017 blog post that proposed a new “Conditional” category for FDA drug approval elicited a number of positive and negative responses. Please explain the proposal in more detail to […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Next Steps for Improving Clinical Evidence and Consistency of Payment for Precision Oncology

Kathryn A. Phillips, PhD, Professor of Health Economics and Health Services Research; Founding Director UCSF Center for Translational and Policy Research on Personalized Medicine; Dept. of Clinical Pharmacy; Institute for Health Policy Studies; Comprehensive Cancer Center University of California, San Francisco Q: Adoption and insurer coverage for precision oncology may require evidence that it can improve […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Conditional Approval: Right Solution for the Wrong Problem

Shannon Brownlee, MS, Senior Vice President of the Lown Institute, a think tank in Boston. She is also co-founder of the Right Care Alliance, a social movement for transforming health care. Q: Musella and Tenenbaum recently proposed a new way, called conditional approval, for the American FDA to move potentially useful drugs to a patient market. […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

In Memorium: Richard E. Horowitz, M.D.

by Dr. George Lundberg Searching for Truth in Cancer Clinical Trials Richard E. Horowitz, MD, Clinical Professor of Pathology, Keck School of Medicine at USC; Emeritus Professor of Pathology, UCLA School of Medicine; Consulting Pathologist, Los Angeles Veteran’s Affairs Medical Center Q: Who has been among the strongest supporters and most constructive critics of CollabRx (since […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Fibrolamellar Hepatocellular Carcinoma: Still Rare but Deadly

John R. Craig, MD PhD, Retired pathologist and formerly Medical Director, St. Jude Cancer Center, Fullerton, CA; Member, Board of Directors, FibroFoundation Q: You were the lead author in a 1980 paper in Cancer that clearly delineated an unusual form of Hepatocellular Carcinoma that you termed “Fibrolamellar Carcinoma”. Now, 37 years later, what insights of importance can […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

A Proposed New FDA Drug Approval Pathway: “Conditional”

  Al Musella, DPM, President, Musella Foundation For Brain Tumor Research & Information, Inc., Hewlett, NY. Marty Tenenbaum, PhD, Founder and Chair, Cancer Commons, Los Altos, CA Q: The delay time from discovery/observation, through validation to approval and distribution/use of new cancer treatments remains excessive. With promising experimental treatments, advanced computer technology and biostatistics, creative alternatives […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

AACR: Advances in Immunotherapy to Continue

Srivani Ravoori, PhD, Associate Director, Science Communications; American Association for Cancer Research Intro: The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) publishes a forecast blog post at the start of each year to ask prominent cancer research leaders what they envision the new developments will be in areas like immunotherapy, precision medicine, cancer prevention, and health disparities. In this excerpt […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

A Fully Integrated Histo-Molecular Pathology Report

Margaret L. Gulley, MD, Professor of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Q: The CAP, ASCO, ASCP and AMP have developed guidelines for interpretation and reporting of NGS variants in cancers. These analyses are performed in a wide range of types of labs and involve professionals from many disciplines. The […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Paying for Precision Oncology – Who Decides?

Patricia Deverka, Principal Researcher, Health Care Group American Institutes for Research, Chapel Hill, NC; Adjunct Associate Professor, Center for Pharmacogenomics & Individualized Therapy, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Q: Paying for Precision Oncology – Who Decides? A: There is tremendous enthusiasm for the scientific rationale and clinical promise of precision oncology amongst researchers, […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

A Plea for Gold Standards in Precision Oncology

George Lundberg, MS, MD, ScD, MASCP, FCAP, Chief Medical Officer and Editor in Chief, CollabRx, a Rennova Health Company; Editor at Large, Medscape; Executive Adviser, Cureus; Consulting Professor of Pathology and Health Research and Policy, Stanford University; President and Chair, The Lundberg Institute; @glundberg Q: Is Precision Oncology Accurate? A: Precision oncology in 2017 is neither […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Precision Oncology: Requirements for the Next Leap Forward

Razelle Kurzrock, MD, Chief, Division of Hematology and Oncology, UCSD School of Medicine; Senior Deputy Director, Clinical Science; Director, Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy; Director, Clinical Trials Office, UCSD Moores Cancer Center, San Diego, California Q: Some workers in the field of precision oncology are growing despondent because of observed limitations of therapeutic effectiveness. What […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Clarity Still Awaited for Prostate Cancer Diagnosis

Nelson N. Stone, MD, Professor of Urology and Radiation Oncology at The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, NY, NY; CEO and Founder, 3DBiopsy, Inc., Aurora, CO. E. David Crawford, MD, Professor of Urology and Radiation Oncology at The University of Colorado, Anschutz Campus, Aurora, CO; Medical Advisor and Founder, 3DBiopsy, Inc., Aurora, CO Q: […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

AACR: Advances in Precision Medicine to Continue

Srivani Ravoori, PhD, Associate Director, Science Communications; American Association for Cancer Research Intro: The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) publishes a forecast blog post at the start of each year to ask prominent cancer research leaders what they envision the new developments will be in areas like immunotherapy, precision medicine, cancer prevention, and health disparities. In this excerpt […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Why the 21st Century Cures Act is a Good Thing

Mary Woolley, President and CEO of Research!America Q: You attended the December signing by President Obama of the 21st Century Cures Act and are recognized to be a strong supporter. Yet harsh criticism of it has quickly appeared in JAMA, BMJ, a variety of other venues, as well as on these pages. Please tell our readers […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Best Uses of PM&R in Patients with Cancer

Val Jones, MD, Medical Director of Admissions, Saint Luke’s Rehabilitation Institute, Spokane, WA Q: Your principal practice in Spokane, Washington is Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. What do you find to be the best uses of PM&R in patients with cancer at your facility? A: Rehabilitation medicine is one of the best-kept secrets in healthcare. Although the […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Importance of Clinical Trial Matching

Adrienne Craig-Kennard, MBA, VP Global Business Development & Strategic Alliances at CollabRx Q: You have served as Vice President, Global Business Development and Strategic Alliances of CollabRx for more than one year. How do you rank the importance of the CollabRx Clinical Trial Matcher in the “big picture” of cancer care? A: Thousands of people each […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Autopsy is Essential in Proper Cancer Care

David S. Priemer, M.D., Resident Physician in Anatomic Pathology and Neuropathology, Indiana University School of Medicine Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, Indianapolis, IN; priemerd@iu.edu Q: The numbers show that American physicians are ready to cast the medical/hospital autopsy into some relic or trash bin. Yet some physicians believe that the low tech autopsy still […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Future of Nursing Care for Advanced Cancer Patients

Karen Donelan, ScD, EdM, Senior Scientist in Health Policy, Mongan Institute Health Policy Center, Massachusetts General Hospital; Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School Boston, MA 02114; kdonelan@mgh.harvard.edu Q: You have gained remarkable insights into the American nursing profession by performing and publishing survey research for many years. What do you envision as the major […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

21st Century Cures Act, Societal Net Negative or Positive?

Daniel R. Hoffman, Ph.D., Health Care Consultant in Glenmoore, PA. Q: Many people are praising the recently passed 21st Century Cures Act. But there are also critics. What are some of the downsides that the American public might experience from this important piece of legislation? A: On December 13 President Obama signed into law the 21st […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Role of the NCQA in Advancing Cancer Care

Margaret E. O’Kane, MHA. Founder and President, National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) Washington, DC. Q: Under your visionary leadership, the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) has established and enforced quality standards for much of American medicine for >25 years. What is the current major role of NCQA in caring for patients with advanced […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Clinical Trial Matching for Patients with Molecularly Characterized Tumors

Smruti Vidwans, PhD, Chief Science Officer at CollabRx Q: Clinical Trials is such an important topic, but it is so broad. Is there a way to provide better matching for Clinical Trials involving cancer patients, especially those whose cancers may have the added diagnostic information of molecular profiling? A: Clinical trials provide cancer patients, especially those […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Complementary/Alternative Approaches in Advanced Cancer

Marc S. Micozzi, MD, PhD, Editor of Fundamentals of Complementary & Alternative Medicine, 5th ed. (2015), Elsevier Health Sciences, 759 pp; Editor of Complementary and Integrative Medicine in Cancer and Prevention: Foundations and Evidence-Based Interventions (2007), New York: Springer, 478 pp. www.drmicozzi.com Q: Many, even millions, of Americans are living with advanced cancer. You are the author of […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Best Use of Palliative Care in Cancer Patients

Malinda Bell, MD, Associate Professor Michigan State University College of Human Medicine; Clinical Associate Professor Western Michigan University Dept of Emergency Medicine Q: Many, even millions, of Americans are living with advanced cancer. You are a board certified Emergency Physician and also boarded in Palliative Care. Please explain the fundamental premises, promises, and practices of […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Will Advanced Computing Help Eradicate Cancer?

Helen Sadik, PhD, Scientific Knowledge Engineer, CollabRx Q: Computers and artificial intelligence show both great progress and great promise in many fields. Can “Big Data”, A.I., and the Watson ilk devise a way to end cancer? A: In 2011, a young and emotionless Watson grabbed the tech industry’s attention by dominating Jeopardy’s two greatest champions. That […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Essential Value of the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE)

Catherine D. DeAngelis, MD, University Distinguished Professor Emerita, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; Professor of Health Policy and Management, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health; Editor in Chief Emerita, JAMA Q: The internet has produced mass democratization of information provision and access with little quality control. You represented JAMA at the International Committee […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Making Cancer Care Great Again

Michael L. Millenson, President of Health Quality Advisors LLC and an Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at Northwestern’s Feinberg School of Medicine Q: Donald Trump’s campaign for the presidency included a promise to repeal “Obamacare” in its entirety. If he succeeds in fulfilling that promise, what impact can we expect on American cancer prevention and […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Control American Drug Costs

Brian Klepper PhD, Health Care Analyst, CEO of Health Value Direct and an advisor to The Lundberg Institute Q: Many newer (as well as many older) drugs are of great value in treating many diseases. But the prices charged seem very high and rising, causing serious concern for many. Is there anything the United States […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Expanded-Compassionate Use of an Investigational Drug

Vivek Subbiah, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Investigational Therapeutics, Division of Cancer Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX Q: You have exhausted surgical, radiation, and standard chemotherapy options for a patient with an advanced epithelial malignancy. Yet the patient has a strong will to live and to advance science during […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The “Hutch” and Improving Baseball: World Series Edition

Jerald P. Radich, MD, Director of the Molecular Oncology Lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington. Q: You are known to be good at clever solutions to daunting problems, and a baseball fan to boot. What should we do about […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Decide to Offer a New Lab Test

Jared N. Schwartz, MD PhD LLC Past President, College of American Pathologists; Opinions his own; Charlotte, NC. Q: Pathologists are faced with the need to set up additional lab tests routinely. Immunotherapy for cancer is the current rage. How does a pathologist decide whether and how to offer a new test such as PD-L1 Expression […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Preventing Hair Loss from Cancer Chemotherapy

Richard B. Schwab, MD. Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine, Moores Cancer Center, University of California, San Diego, School of Medicine Q: Loss of hair is a predictable adverse effect of much chemotherapy. Although “only cosmetic” this can be a troubling event for some patients. What is your opinion about the new devices or methods available […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Mutational Oncology: The Basics

Vivian B. Douglas, PhD. Associate Knowledge Engineer, CollabRx San Francisco, California Q: Many mature clinicians find “Mutational Oncology” to be a bit mysterious. Please help them understand. As they pertain to cancer, what are somatic (as opposed to germ line) mutations, transitions, transversions, “point”, “missense”, “nonsense”, insertion, deletion, and copy numbers and why does it […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

The Most Relied Upon Journals in Precision Oncology

George Lundberg, MS, MD, ScD, MASCP, FCAP, Chief Medical Officer and Editor in Chief, CollabRx, a Rennova Health Company; Editor at Large, Medscape; Executive Adviser, Cureus; Consulting Professor of Pathology and Health Research and Policy, Stanford University; President and Chair, The Lundberg Institute; @glundberg Q: The medical world is running amuck with new information, some credible, […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Length and Quality of Life in Cancer Patient Treatment

Professor Michael Baum, Professor Emeritus of Surgery & Visiting Professor of Medical Humanities. University College, London, UK. Q: Although you have practiced as a surgeon in the British National Health Service (NHS) for most of your career, how is it that you’ve been such an outspoken critic of the “21st C cures act” that was […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Canadian/American Cancer

Cynthia Martin, MA is a freelance/ghost writer (who tried to write a serious piece). Q: As a journalist, you are a savvy native Canadian consumer/patient who also knows a lot about the United States. What do you see as the main similarities and differences between cancer prevention and care in the US and Canada? A: […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Conflict of Interest in Cancer Clinical Trials

Kevin B. Knopf, MD MPH, Medical Director, Cancer Commons San Francisco, California Q: Clinical trials are the lifeblood of continuing drug development in the US. Yet they are often undersubscribed. What do you see as key conflicts of interest in recruiting for patients in the academic medical center, the hospital, and the private oncologists’ practice? […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Can Preclinical Data Guide Clinical Cancer Therapy?

Keith Flaherty, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Director of Developmental Therapeutics, Cancer Center, Massachusetts General Hospital. Q: Under what circumstances and to what extent are you willing to take clinical actions on a cancer patient based primarily on preclinical data? A: There are two scenarios that come to mind when thinking about […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Circadian Cancer Therapy

William Hrushesky, MD FACP, Founder and Chief Scientific Officer Rythmalytics LLC (Cicada Circadian Coach), West Orange NJ; Chief Medical Officer Ambulatory Monitoring Inc., Ardsley, NY Q: Are there meaningful advantages to show for optimizing and specifying time of day treatments for cancer? A: Everyone knows: GEICO can save you 15%. Everyone knows “Timing is everything”. […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Generic Drugs vs. Biosimilar Biologics

Y. Tony Yang, ScD, LLM, MPH., Associate Professor, Department of Health Administration and Policy, George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia. Charles Bennett, MD, PhD, M.P.P., Smart State and Frank P and Jose M Fletcher Chair, Medication Safety and Efficacy, Smart State Center of Economic Excellence, University of South Carolina and the Hollings National Cancer Institute Designated Cancer […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Driver and Passenger Mutations in Cancer Cell Genes

Michelle Turski, PhD, Senior Scientific Knowledge Engineer, CollabRx Q: What are the similarities and differences between “driver” mutations and “passenger” mutations and in what common malignancies is that distinction most important? A: The commonly accepted definition of a driver mutation is a mutation within a gene that confers a selective growth advantage (thus promoting cancer […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Patients and Physicians Should Share Decisions in Oncology

Brian Klepper, PhD, CEO and Founding Principal of Health Value Direct Q: Many of us have been touched by the publication of your sensitive but serious criticism of your wife’s care once her ultimately lethal peritoneal cancer had spread. How do you propose that oncologists, patients and their families should best practice “shared decision making”? A: Sad but […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Targeted Therapy for Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia

Javier Munoz MD, FACP, Hematologist/Oncologist at Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert, AZ and Hematology-Oncology Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston TX Q: A 76-year-old male is referred to you. His labs at presentation showed anemia and elevated immunoglobulin M. A bone marrow biopsy showed lymphoplasmacytic […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Using Patient Navigators to Improve Cancer Care

Valerie Fraser Cancer Research Advocate/­Patient Navigator; Inflammatory Breast Cancer International Consortium (IBC-IC) Huntington Woods, Michigan Q: What are Patient Navigators and why are they sometimes necessary for some cancer patients. How do the best programs work? A: As precision medicine, information technology and an increasingly savvy internet society merge, there will be a greater expectation that patients […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

CollabRx and the 2016 Cancer Moonshot

George Lundberg, MS, MD, ScD, MASCP, FCAP, Chief Medical Officer and Editor in Chief, CollabRx, a Rennova Health Company; Editor at Large, Medscape; Executive Adviser, Cureus; Consulting Professor of Pathology and Health Research and Policy, Stanford University; President and Chair, The Lundberg Institute; @glundberg Q: Did the CollabRx vision of 2008-2010 foretell the 2016 Cancer Moonshot? […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Sun Exposure and Skin Cancer Risk

David Polsky, MD, PhD, Professor of Dermatology and Pathology; Alfred W. Kopf, MD, Professor of Dermatologic Oncology; Director, Pigmented Lesion Section; The Ronald O. Perelman Dept of Dermatology; New York University School of Medicine; NYU Langone Medical Center Q: Summer sun season is upon us. What role, if any, does sun exposure have in the […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Is there a Better Descriptive Name than Personalized Medicine?

Jerald P. Radich, MD, Director of the Molecular Oncology Lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, Washington. Q: What’s in a name? Should “it” be “Personalized Medicine,” “Precision Medicine,” or perhaps, “Accurate Medicine”? A: Much of what we do in my laboratory […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Seeing the Forest for the Trees: How Cancer Evolution Affects Treatment

Lisandra E. West, PhD, Senior Scientific Knowledge Engineer, CollabRx. Q: How might current thinking on tumor evolution/heterogeneity and sequential mutational profiling inform optimal therapy selection? A: I’d like to share some learnings from ASCO, 2016: To help think about tumor evolution over the course of time and treatment of cancer, I’m a fan of the palm […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Multiple Sequential Biopsies now Standard of Care in NSCLC

Gregory Otterson, MD, Professor of Internal Medicine; Interim Division Director of Medical Oncology; Co-Director, Thoracic Oncology Program; Program Director, Hematology & Medical Oncology Fellowship Program; The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center. Q: How has the introduction of molecular testing of non small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) altered therapy and outcomes? A: The understanding of lung […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Use CUREUS to Build Rapid Learning Communities

John R. Adler, Jr., MD, CEO & Editor-in-Chief Cureus.com; Dorothy & TK Chan Professor, Emeritus, Stanford University Q: CollabRx, and its “sister” not for profit organization “Cancer Commons”, are dedicated to rapid dissemination and implementation of the best evidence to improve cancer care. The National Academy of Medicine has called for the building of rapid […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Should All Potentially Lethal Tumors Be Sequenced?

Lisandra E. West, PhD, Senior Scientific Knowledge Engineer, CollabRx. Q: Is there enough benefit to justify sequencing all patients’ tumors? – Perspective from a scientific knowledge engineer. A: As a scientist working as a scientific knowledge engineer in molecular oncology, part of my job is to collect, organize, and deliver data that correspond to aberrations present […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Use of Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs) in Detection and Management of Lung Cancer

Ruth L. Katz, MD, Professor of Pathology, Director Image Analysis Lab; Chief research Cytopathology, University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer center, Houston, Texas. Q: Liquid biopsy is “all the rage” in the cancer diagnostic space these days. You have worked with Circulating Tumor Cells (CTCs) for quite some time. Beyond R and D, is there […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Can Precision Oncology Develop Despite Pharmaphobia?

Thomas P. Stossel, MD, American Cancer Society Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Senior Physician, Hematology Division, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA; Visiting Scholar, American Enterprise Institute; Secretary, Options for Children in Zambia Q: Your recent book “Pharmaphobia:—–” about conflict of interest “Myths” drew great attention to what you and David Shaywitz earlier called […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How do Phase 1 Clinical Trials for Cancer Drugs Work?

Razelle Kurzrock, MD, Chief, Division of Hematology and Oncology,UCSD School of Medicine; Senior Deputy Director, Clinical Science; Director, Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy; Director, Clinical Trials Office, UCSD Moores Cancer Center, San Diego, California Q: How is it determined that an investigational cancer drug is ready for entrance into Phase 1 clinical trials? And, how […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

NextGenU.org and the Prevention of Cancer

Erica Frank, MD, MPH, Professor and Canada Research Chair, University of British Columbia; Founder and President, NextGenU.org; Founding Member, CollabRx Editorial Advisory Board Q: What is Next Gen U and how does it approach the prevention of cancer? A: NextGenU.org is essentially the world’s first free university; uniquely global for credit, for free. Founded in 2001 with […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Targeted Therapy and/or Immunotherapy for Cancer

Paul R. Billings MD, PhD, Internist, Clinical Geneticist, and Immunologist: Founder and Executive Chairman, PlumCare LLC; Chairman, Biological Dynamics Inc; Co-Founder and Chief Medical Officer, Omicia; Principal, Bethesda Group LLC; and Member, Board of Directors, Rennova Health Inc. Q: Surgery and radiation treatment for many cancers are now being followed by not only adjuvant chemotherapy […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

A Full House for Myeloma Therapy: What’s Next in the Cards?

Robert Orlowski, MD, PhD, Florence Maude Thomas Cancer Research Professor and Professor of Medicine (Lymphoma/Myeloma) and Experimental Therapeutics, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX Q: Some writers have characterized 2015 as a year of great progress in the treatment of Multiple Myeloma. What advances in Myeloma treatment in 2015 do you […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Managing Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Bassel El-Rayes, MD, Professor and Vice Chair for Clinical Research, Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, Associate Director for Clinical Research, and Director of the Gastrointestinal Oncology Program Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University Q:You have just received a new patient, referred to you from Macon, GA. She is a 52 year old white woman […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Compassionate Use of Investigational Drugs

Arthur L Caplan, PhD Director, Division of Medical Ethics, NYU Langone Medical Center. Amrit Ray MD, MBA, Chief Medical Officer, Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson. Q: What is the ethical basis for compassionate use of investigational drugs; and what are some practical considerations in making such use reality? A: In seeking relief from the burden of […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Single Cell Biology in Cancer Research and Treatment

Gavin Gordon, PhD, Senior Director, Global Pharma & Clinical Trials Alliances, Fluidigm Corporation Q: What do you see as the best roll for single cell biology in cancer research and treatment in the near future? A: Supporting immuno-oncology research and development. Single cell biology refers to the analysis of individual cells isolated from complex tissues obtained […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

How to Initiate Treatment for Chronic Myelogenous Leukemia

Jerald P. Radich, MD, Director of the Molecular Oncology Lab at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine Q: What is your basic approach to handling a middle aged adult patient in good general health who is referred to you with a new diagnosis […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Making NGS Work for Oncologists

Smruti Vidwans, PhD, Chief Science Officer at CollabRx Q: Your group has recently described an Actionability Framework for designing treatment strategies for cancers that are characterized by mutations. What is the basis and rationale for such an approach? A: As Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) is increasingly adopted into clinical practice, physicians are faced with the daunting […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Treating Metastatic Malignant Melanoma

Keith Flaherty, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School; Director of Developmental Therapeutics, Cancer Center, Massachusetts General Hospital. Q: What is your basic approach to handling a new young adult patient in good general health who is referred to you with a diagnosis of Malignant Melanoma, metastatic to liver or lung? The primary cutaneous […]

Curious Dr. George | Plumbing the Core and Nibbling at the Margins of Cancer

Introducing a New CollabRx Blog

George D Lundberg, MD, Editor in Chief and Chief Medical Officer & Denise Bartolome, Managing Editor and Webmaster   Q: Why are we starting The CollabRx Blog? A: With our new blog, we intend to provide a vehicle to communicate timely information of importance about cancer to a broad audience. Our Editorial Board members come from hospitals, […]