Virginia Commonwealth University

VCU Massey Cancer Center

The $125 billion question: how will the ACA affect cancer survivors?

Sabik Barnes Bradley for ACA blog post

In 2010, the total cost of cancer care in the United States reached $125 billion. Cancer patients are also living longer today, which is further increasing the cost of their continued care. As the health insurance exchanges have opened and heated debate about the Affordable Care Act (ACA) continues, many questions remain, including the $125 billion question: “How will the ACA affect the most expensive disease: cancer?”

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Ten years later… Still one in a million

In March of 2003, I was having pain in my right upper chest that initially occurred only when I laughed. Eventually the pain continued to worsen, so I made an appointment with my primary care physician. After many tests and procedures, fluid-filled sacks were found on my liver. The following week, I was scheduled for a liver biopsy.

I woke up from that biopsy and my life had been changed forever.

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Novel combination therapy developed at Massey shows strong response in patients with advanced solid tumors

A phase 1 clinical trial testing a novel combination therapy developed by scientists at VCU Massey Cancer Center slowed the growth of cancer in the majority of trial participants, which were patients with advanced solid tumors. Approximately 61 percent of these patients experienced some degree of tumor growth delay, with multiple partial responses and one complete response. A phase 2 study testing the same combination of the drugs sorafenib and pemetrexed in patients with recurrent or metastatic triple negative breast cancer is now open at Massey. 

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VCU Massey researchers encouraged by Vice President Biden’s $70 million Genomics Data Commons project

Researchers from Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) Massey Cancer Center were in attendance at the American Society for Clinical Oncology’s annual meeting in Chicago when Vice President Joe Biden announced that more than $70 million would be invested in the development of the Genomics Data Commons (GDC), an information center housed at the University of Chicago and funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) to help facilitate the sharing of genomic and clinical data among cancer researchers in order to advance personalized medicine.

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Two clinical trials test novel combination therapies for brain and central nervous system cancers

Paul Dent for blog

Researchers at VCU Massey Cancer Center are conducting two clinical trials testing novel combination therapies for the treatment of brain and central nervous system cancers. The phase 1 and phase 2 clinical trials are both based on translational research performed at Massey by Paul Dent, Ph.D., Universal Corporation Chair in Cancer Cell Signaling and member of the Cancer Cell Signaling research program at VCU Massey as well as professor of biochemistry and molecular biology at VCU School of Medicine. 

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Clinical trial tests promising immunotherapies for advanced lung cancer

Sherman Baker Jr., M.D., medical oncologist and member of the Developmental Therapeutics research program at VCU Massey Cancer Center, is spearheading a phase 3 clinical trial testing two immunotherapy drugs, MEDI4736 and tremelimumab, for the treatment of patients with advanced lung cancer. The goal of the study is to determine whether MEDI4736 combined with tremelimumab or MEDI4736 by itself is more effective than traditional chemotherapy treatment to treat advanced lung cancer.

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