Cabozantinib in Hepatocellular Carcinoma: An Interview With Thomas A. Abrams, MD

​Hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the most common type of primary liver cancer, is a challenging condition to treat, with reported five-year survival rates ranging from 30% to 50%. Recently, the FDA approved cabozantinib (Cabometyx®, Exelixis, Inc.) as second-line treatment for patients with HCC previously treated with sorafenib. Thomas A. Abrams, MD, Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, spoke with i3 Health about cabozantinib's approval and about the various options now ava...
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Anti-Rejection Drugs Help for Liver Cancer, Too

According to a recent study, anti-rejection drugs—immunosuppressants used after an organ transplant to ensure organ acceptance—can be repurposed to fight certain liver cancers with B-catenin mutations. The B-catenin gene plays an important role in the Wnt signaling pathway by regulating stem cell differentiation and cell fate decisions during development. Present in about 20% to 35% of liver cancer cases, B-catenin mutations are linked to various liver diseases. "What we've found is that liver c...
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Antiviral Drugs Can Be Administered to Liver Cancer Patients

Although hepatitis C infection is one of the leading causes of liver cancer, controversy is widespread regarding whether the direct-acting antiviral (DAA) therapies used to treat it spur tumor recurrence and worsen prognosis for patients who also have hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), the most common type of liver cancer. A recent study has found that these concerns are unnecessary: DAA therapies do not instigate tumor growth. For the study, published in Gastroenterology , researchers analyzed dat...
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Hepatocellular Carcinoma: Cabozantinib Approved for Second-Line Treatment

The FDA has now approved cabozantinib (Cabometyx®, Exelixis, Inc.) for patients with hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) previously treated with sorafenib. The approval was based on CELESTIAL (NCT01908426), a double-blind, multicenter trial of 707 patients with HCC randomized in a 2:1 ratio to receive cabozantinib 60 mg once daily or matching placebo. Eligible patients had been previously treated with sorafenib, had disease progression following at least one systemic treatment for HCC, and could have...
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“Sponge” Absorbs Excess Chemo Drugs to Avoid Side Effects

​ Chemotherapy can be highly effective at treating cancer, but doctors often cannot prescribe the optimal cancer-killing dose due to systemic toxic side effects. When chemotherapy is administered to a cancerous organ via intra-arterial infusion, 50% to 80% of the drug generally does not remain in that organ. The excess passes on to the veins that drain the organ, entering the circulatory system, where it gets distributed to the rest of the body. Researchers from the University of California, Ber...
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