MD Anderson Research Highlights for February 21, 2024

The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center’s Research Highlights showcases the latest breakthroughs in cancer care, research and prevention. These advances are made possible through seamless collaboration between MD Anderson’s world-leading clinicians and scientists, bringing discoveries from the lab to the clinic and back. Recent developments at MD Anderson offer insights into drug-drug interactions for patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and myelodysplastic syndromes; patient-derived xenograft models as a viable translational research tool in early-phase clinical trials; a novel gene expression signature to stratify patients with bladder cancer; a potential therapeutic target to overcome treatment resistance in multiple myeloma; a role for mutant p53 in protecting against ferroptosis in triple-negative breast cancer; and diet modifications to improve treatment outcomes in FLT3-mutated AML.

Urology on the Beach Meeting Highlights Innovative Approaches to Multidisciplinary Care

Renowned urologists from leading academic centers shared their insights and clinical recommendations at Urology on the Beach, a three-day professional conference hosted by the Desai Sethi Urology Institute (DSUI) at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

Researchers Discover Why One Type of Chemotherapy Works Best in Bladder Cancer

Tisch Cancer Institute researchers discovered that a certain type of chemotherapy improves the immune system’s ability to fight off bladder cancer, particularly when combined with immunotherapy, according to a study published in Cell Reports Medicine in January.

Adding Immunotherapy to Chemotherapy Regimen Improves Survival in Metastatic Bladder Cancer Patients

A clinical trial co-led by Mount Sinai researchers is the first to show that using chemotherapy with immunotherapy resulted in improved survival in patients with an advanced type of bladder cancer. The results were simultaneously reported in The New England Journal of Medicine and at the annual meeting of the European Society for Medical Oncology.

Advanced Bladder Cancer Patients Could Keep Their Bladder Under New Treatment Regime, Clinical Trial Shows

Mount Sinai investigators have developed a new approach for treating invasive bladder cancer without the need for surgical removal of the bladder, according to a study published in Nature Medicine in September.

Global Speakers, Cutting-edge Topics, Surgical Theater on Tap for Desai Sethi Urology Institute’s Urology on the Beach 2024

Desai Sethi Urology Institute at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine will host its second annual, in-person Urology on the Beach meeting, January 19 to 21, 2024, at the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach.

Desai Sethi Urology Institute Presents, Debates and is Recognized at AUA 2023

A banner year for Desai Sethi Urology Institute at urology’s premier meeting, the American Urological Association (AUA) 2023, held April 28-May 1 in Chicago where faculty and researchers led and debated during plenary sessions and presented novel research in topics spanning prostate and bladder cancers to sexual function and robotic surgery.

Immunotherapy After Surgery Provides Significant, Durable Benefit for High-Risk Bladder Patients

Immunotherapy after surgery increased bladder cancer patients’ chance of staying cancer-free compared to patients who received a placebo, according to clinical trial results shared in a late-breaking oral presentation at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2023 Genitourinary Cancers Symposium in February.

‘Urology on the Beach’ Conference Highlights Advances in Research and Patient Care

From urologic cancers to female urology to male infertility to kidney stones and sexual health, top urologists from throughout the nation shared their insights and practical tips at “Urology on the Beach,” a conference hosted January 13-15 by the Desai Sethi Urology Institute at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.

NCCN Announces Funding for Bladder Cancer Research Projects, in Collaboration with Pfizer and EMD Serono

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s Oncology Research Program selects projects focused on improving patient care and outcomes in locally advanced or metastatic bladder cancer.

Mutational signature linking bladder cancer and tobacco smoking found with new AI tool

UC San Diego researchers have for the first time discovered a pattern of DNA mutations that links bladder cancer to tobacco smoking. The work could help researchers identify what environmental factors, such as exposure to tobacco smoke and UV radiation, cause cancer in certain patients. It could also lead to more customized treatments for a patient’s specific cancer.

Modified bladder cancer treatment shows promise in animal studies

A modified tuberculosis (TB) vaccine developed at Texas Biomed could help treat a form of bladder cancer, called non-muscle invasive bladder cancer, without strong side effects. Results in mouse models and human cells show promising results and pave the way for human clinical trials. The research, conducted in close collaboration with UT Health San Antonio, was published online in June in the journal Cancer Immunology, Immunotherapy.

Hormones Contribute to Sex Disparities in Bladder Cancer, Study Shows

Male sex hormones interfere with the body’s ability to fight bladder cancer, likely explaining why males experience higher cancer rates and more deadly disease, according to a new study co-led by a Cedars-Sinai Cancer investigator.

Immunotherapy After Bladder Cancer Surgery Shows Excellent Cancer-free Survival Rates

Immunotherapy after surgery helped reduce cancer recurrence in patients with urothelial cancer of the bladder or other sites in the urinary tract that had invaded the muscle and therefore posed a high risk for recurrence, according to clinical trial results presented at the American Urological Association (AUA) annual meeting in May.

First Mutation-Targeted Bladder Cancer Drug May Be Under-Used

The first bladder cancer drug targeting a cancer-driving gene mutation has been used relatively little despite its clear efficacy in a clinical trial, suggests a JAMA Oncology study led by the University of Pennsylvania. Researchers analyzed a large, nationwide database of cancer cases and found that bladder cancer patients potentially eligible for erdafitinib (Balversa) treatment, fewer than half had a record of being tested for the relevant gene mutation. Of those who were tested and found to have the mutation, fewer than half received the treatment.

Investigators Uncover Cellular Pathway Involved in Cancer Growth

A hallmark of cancer is its ability to replicate, a process commonly driven by the reactivation of the telomerase enzyme complex, which helps prevent the aging and death of healthy cells and keeps stem cells in bone marrow and the intestines from producing normal cells in those organs. When telomerase is activated in cancer cells, it helps them survive and duplicate in the body.

Yale Cancer Center Study Shows Novel Test Can Detect New and Recurrent Bladder Cancer

A study led by researchers at Yale Cancer Center, Stony Brook University and KDx Diagnostics, Inc., examined a revolutionary new urine screening test that utilizes a novel Keratin 17 (K17) cancer biomarker, and revealed the test can detect the presence of new bladder cancer in patients with hematuria, or blood in the urine.

Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Experts Available for Comment during Men’s Health Month

New Brunswick, N.J., June 7, 2021 – June is a special time of year focused on heightening the awareness of preventable health problems and encouraging early detection and treatment of disease for men. Diseases like prostate cancer, which is the…

Immunotherapy After Surgery Is Shown to Reduce Deadly Relapse Risk in Advanced Bladder Cancer

A phase 3 clinical trial co-led by Mount Sinai researchers is the first to show that immunotherapy after surgery to remove bladder cancer can reduce the risk of relapse for patients who are at high risk of their cancer returning in a deadly metastatic form, according to results published in The New England Journal of Medicine. The immunotherapy nivolumab was used as an adjuvant therapy, which is given after surgery in the hopes of maximizing its effectiveness.

What is Bladder Cancer?

The bladder, a part of the urinary system, is a hollow organ in the pelvis with the primary function of storing and then eliminating urine that drains into it from the kidney. Cancer of the bladder develops when abnormal cells in the bladder start to grow out of control. Rutgers Cancer Institute expert explains what you need to know.

Male bladder cancer vulnerability could lead to a new treatment approach

UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center researchers found that targeting androgen receptors – a type of protein specific to men – may destroy cancer cells. Focusing on this male protein variant common in malignant bladder tumor cells may serve as a new avenue for treating bladder cancer in men.

Study finds high tumor mutation burden predicts immunotherapy response in some, but not all, cancers

A high rate of genetic mutations within a tumor, known as high tumor mutation burden, was only useful for predicting immunotherapy responses in a subset of cancer types, suggesting that this may not reliably be used as a universal biomarker.

Yale Cancer Center Study Shows Targeted Therapy Improves Survival for Advanced Bladder Cancer

In a new study led by researchers at Yale Cancer Center, the drug enfortumab vedotin significantly prolonged survival as compared with standard chemotherapy in patients with locally advanced or metastatic urothelial carcinoma or bladder cancer, who had previously received platinum-based treatment and a PD-1–PD-L1 inhibitor.

MD Anderson and UroGen Pharma announce strategic research collaboration to advance investigational treatment for high-grade bladder cancer

MD Anderson and UroGen today announced a strategic three-year collaboration agreement to advance combination immunotherapy, delivered directly into the bladder, for the treatment of high-grade non-muscle invasive bladder cancer. The collaboration will work through MD Anderson’s immunotherapy platform to design pre-clinical and clinical studies.

Multiple Sclerosis May Not Put You at Risk for Breast, Colorectal Cancers

People with multiple sclerosis (MS) may not be at higher risk of developing two of the three cancers that occur most commonly in people with MS, breast and colorectal cancer, than people who don’t have the disease, according to a new study published in the November 25, 2020, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. However, the study did find that people with MS had a higher incidence of bladder cancer.

Protect Your Bladder: Quit Smoking

Your bladder probably isn’t your favorite topic of conversation, but knowing when to talk to your doctor about it is crucial to your health. If you experience frequent and/or painful urination, or you notice blood in your urine, telling your primary care provider is the first step to diagnosing a problem and finding the right care. More often than not, these symptoms are caused by non-life-threatening conditions like urinary tract infection, overactive bladder or, in men, an enlarged prostate. But they also could be symptoms of bladder cancer, the sixth most common form of cancer in the United States.

Dual checkpoint blockade promising as pre-surgical approach for certain patients with localized bladder cancer

Phase I trial finds neoadjuvant combination checkpoint inhibitors (anti-CTLA-4 plus anti-PD-1) was well tolerated and showed early signs of activity in certain patients with bladder cancer. These patients cannot be treated with chemotherapy and have no standard treatment options available.

Phase III Trial Shows Avelumab an Immunotherapy Treatment for Advanced Urothelial Cancer Prolongs Overall Survival

During a plenary session of the 2020 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Virtual Scientific Program, findings will be presented from the global phase III JAVELIN Bladder 100 randomized study conducted by investigators from Seattle Cancer Care Alliance, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and University of Washington Medicine along with several other research centers. The results demonstrated significantly prolonged overall survival of patients with locally advanced (unresectable) or metastatic urothelial cancer when treated with first-line immunotherapy avelumab plus best supportive care (BSC) compared to BSC alone (following disease control on induction chemotherapy).

Next-gen nano technologies to tackle infection and diagnose disease

Next-gen nano technologies that can prevent infection and diagnose disease are set to transform the medical industry as this important UniSA research is awarded more than $2 million dollars under the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) 2021 Investigator Grants.

Combination of Chemo and Immunotherapy Is Shown to Work Against Metastatic Bladder Cancer

A clinical trial led by Mount Sinai researchers has showed for the first time that combining chemotherapy and immunotherapy can slow down metastatic bladder cancer. The trial also showed that immunotherapy alone may be an option for a subset of patients with metastatic bladder cancer if their tumor expresses a high level of a protein called PD-L1 according to the study, published in The Lancet in May.

Immunotherapy Treatment Immediately After Chemotherapy Significantly Slows Metastatic Bladder Cancer Progression

Using immunotherapy immediately after chemotherapy treatment in patients with metastatic bladder cancer significantly slowed the progression of the cancer, according to results of a clinical trial led by Mount Sinai researchers published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology in April.

E-cigarette users had substances linked to bladder cancer in urine

In the review published in the journal European Urology Oncology, researchers compiled the results of 22 different studies that analyzed the urine of people who used e-cigarettes or other tobacco products, including cigarettes, to check for evidence of cancer-linked compounds or biomarkers of those compounds. They found six biomarkers or compounds with a strong link to bladder cancer.

Collaboration with Texas Biomed, SwRI and UT Health San Antonio targets Bladder Cancer

The San Antonio Medical Foundation (SAMF) has awarded Texas Biomedical Research Institute Professor Jordi B. Torrelles, Ph.D., with a $173,000 grant to study a modified Mycobacterium bovis Bacillus Calmette et Guérin (BCG) vaccine shown to have promise for treating bladder cancer. BCG is a weakened strain of Mycobacterium bovis, a vaccine for tuberculosis.

NCCN

New Patient Resource from NCCN Helps People with Bladder Cancer Make Informed Treatment Decisions

New NCCN Guidelines for Patients: Bladder Cancer explains the lengthy surveillance process that follows active treatment for the sixth most-common cancer in the United States. PLYMOUTH MEETING, PA [June 26, 2019] — The treatment landscape for bladder cancer has changed…