Tremendous progress has been made in the treatment of relapsed/refractory (R/R) chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) and small lymphocytic lymphoma (SLL) over the past few decades, starting with the development of glucocorticoids and alkylating agents, moving to combination chemotherapy, and then to chemoimmunotherapy. More recently, the advent of targeted agents has led to significant improvements in overall survival, progression-free survival, and quality of life. Most patients with R/R CLL and SLL are now treated with 1 of 5 approved targeted therapies rather than chemoimmunotherapy as standard of care. There are 2 main chemotherapy-free approaches in the R/R setting: Bruton’s tyrosine kinase inhibition and venetoclax-based therapy. Treatment after disease progression on first-line therapy depends on the initial choice of therapy, reason for discontinuation of prior lines of therapy, and available options.
Presenter: Margaret A. Tempero
Although we are “winning the war against cancer,” pancreatic malignancies are expected to be the most common cause of cancer-related death by 2040. Several systemic therapies, such as oxaliplatin + irinotecan/fluorouracil/leucovorin (FOLFIRINOX) and gemcitabine + nab-paclitaxel, have shown activity in the adjuvant and neoadjuvant settings. The current NCCN Guidelines reflect the most up-to-date, evidence-based data relating to the evaluation and management of pancreatic adenocarcinoma. They were recently updated to recommend germline testing for any patient with pancreatic cancer and molecular analysis of any metastatic pancreatic tumor.
Presenter: David S. Craig
For patients undergoing treatment for cancer-induced pain, the identification and evaluation of pharmacogenetic variability may improve outcomes. Metabolism of opioids and other analgesic agents is influenced by patient-specific variables and drug–drug interactions, which often pose clinical challenges. Consultation with a clinical pharmacist or pharmacogenetics specialist is recommended to aid in the interpretation and evaluation of pharmacogenetic test results. The current NCCN Guidelines for Adult Cancer Pain provide pharmacogenetic considerations and recommendations for the treatment and supportive care of this population.
Presenters: Diane K. Hammon, Elizabeth A. Souza, Anne Chiang, and Lawrence N. Shulman
Moderator : Timothy Kubal
As difficult as it may be to comprehend, quality affordable healthcare, particularly cancer care, is not accessible to every individual in every region of the United States. Without timely use of the full range of cancer care services, the best health outcomes cannot be achieved. To explore the scope of this contemporary scenario in cancer care and share ongoing efforts to improve access to cancer care for all, a distinguished panel shared their views at the NCCN 2022 Annual Conference. From the varied perspectives of patients, providers, and researchers, the panel featured a discussion of shared-care models at Massachusetts General Hospital and Penn Medicine Cancer Care to enable patients to expand their access to cancer care and receive that care closer to where they live. In addition, the panel explored initiatives to build and expand the network of clinical trials to enable patients to access such trials in their communities.
Presenters: Shannon M. Ansbaugh, Gary Deng, Rev. George F. Handzo, and Karen L. Syrjala
Moderator : Jessica R. Bauman
Quality survivorship care is critical for individuals dealing with the physical, mental, and emotional impacts of cancer and its treatment. Patients may not grasp the full traumatic impact of a cancer diagnosis until years later, but the mental health impacts of cancer can be significant. At the NCCN 2022 Annual Conference, a diverse panel discussed the cancer journey through the eyes of survivorship care, with voices representing both the patient and provider perspectives. Featured during the discussion were updates to the NCCN Distress Thermometer Problem List (to represent current psycho‐oncology best practices more accurately), NCCN recommendations for mental health screening, and the benefit of integrative medicine both to relieve symptoms and improve overall wellness. Empowering patients to become active participants in their own treatment and strong survivors afterward was the overriding theme throughout the panel discussion.
Presenters: Thomas A. Farrington, Liz Margolies, Shonta Chambers, Maria D. Garcia-Jimenez, and Alyssa A. Schatz
Moderator : Carmen E. Guerra
Many people with cancer have benefited from the host of therapeutic and research advances across many different tumor types over the past decades. However, not every patient with cancer is afforded the opportunity for such treatments, and there is an assortment of notable barriers to the delivery of equitable care for all. To address the complexity of this important issue in contemporary cancer care, a distinguished panel at the NCCN 2022 Annual Conference, moderated by Carmen E. Guerra, MD, MSCE, explored this topic from several different vantage points, including the patient perspective and the view from inside the LGBTQ+ community. In addition, several panel members explored the constructive steps and initiatives being taken in the clinical, research, and policy realms to improve access to care for all patients with cancer, as well as overall health equity.
Presenter: Stephen W. Behrman
Ampullary adenocarcinoma is an uncommon neoplasm that most often requires pancreatoduodenectomy, has a less than optimal cure rate, and is a cancer for which the impact of multidisciplinary care remains unclear. Although often believed to have a better prognosis than pancreatic cancer, ampullary cancer remains a highly lethal disease. Given its rarity and the typical lack of surrounding vessel invasion, a surgery-first approach has most commonly been used in treatment sequencing. The literature has yielded conflicting results regarding the use of adjuvant therapy. Neoadjuvant therapy has received little attention but offers promise with regard to pathologic downstaging, particularly when chemotherapy is combined with radiation. Genetic evaluation may help guide future therapies, and multi-institutional trials are needed to develop optimal treatment sequencing and directed at the 2 specific histologic subtypes.
Presenter: Maura L. Gillison
Cisplatin and 70 Gy of intensity-modulated radiotherapy remain the standard of care (SoC) in HPV-positive head and neck cancer, with no data to support de-escalation as a new SoC. Cetuximab compromises locoregional tumor control and overall survival without reduced toxicity, although with different toxicity. Eliminating cisplatin and reducing radiation by 10 Gy compromise progression-free survival but not overall survival, and replacement of SoC adjuvant chemoradiotherapy with low-dose radiotherapy plus docetaxel compromises progression-free survival for patients with extracapsular extension and/or multiple cervical metastases, without significantly reducing grade 3 toxicities. The current trend toward numerous, single-institution phase II trials should be minimized, because they can be difficult to interpret. Instead, to move the field forward with more definitive outcomes, focus should be placed on taking promising concepts to multicenter, randomized phase II/III studies with clear statistical endpoints.
Presenter: Reid M. Ness
In the past 2 years, several significant changes have been made to the NCCN Guidelines for Colorectal Cancer (CRC) Screening. The age for initiation of screening average-risk adults has been lowered from age 50 to 45 years—without differentiation by age and race—and from age50 to 45 years for those with second- and third-degree relatives with CRC. For several groups, surveillance intervals have been changed. Patients with 1 or 2 low-risk adenomas at index colonoscopy, on the other hand, can now wait 10 years rather than 5 to 7 years between surveillance examinations. The first surveillance examination following resection of large adenomas or sessile serrated polyps (SSPs) with unfavorable-risk characteristics or that were removed piecemeal should now occur at 6 months. For patients with ≥10 adenomas and SSPs on a single colonoscopy, time to first surveillance was lowered to 1 year.
Presenter: Shaji K. Kumar
For patients with newly diagnosed multiple myeloma (MM), treatment with 4-drug regimens produce deep responses and should be considered for those with high-risk features. Daratumumab + lenalidomide and dexamethasone is standard treatment for newly diagnosed patients not eligible for autologous stem cell transplantation (ASCT). Although lenalidomide remains standard maintenance therapy, in some instances more intensive regimens can be considered. ASCT is more effective when given up-front rather than delayed, but delaying transplantation until disease progression is acceptable. CAR T-cell therapy can provide durable responses, and 2 agents are now FDA-approved for use in multiple myeloma. Bispecific T-cell engagers are also effective for relapsed myeloma, as is the BCL2 inhibitor venetoclax, especially for patients with t(11;14) disease. An emerging novel class of drugs, the CELMoDs (cereblon E3 ligase modulator), target cereblon.