68th Annual Cancer Symposium of the Society of Surgical Oncology Published Online April 3, 2015 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/ S1470-2045(15)70163-4 The 68th Annual Cancer Symposium of the Society of Surgical Oncology was held on March 25–28, 2015, in Houston, TX, USA
Unnecessary CT scans in breast cancer Scrutinising institutional data of patients with stage I or II breast cancer undergoing CT scans for metastatic work up of pulmonary symptoms, Rebecca Dull (St Louis, MO, USA) showed that although 684 of 3321 patients received CT scans, only 187 patients were found to have pulmonary nodules, with just nine diagnosed with pulmonary metastases. The presenter concluded that among patients with pulmonary nodules, only 1·3% had metastatic disease, and hence a substantial number of patients received CT unnecessarily.
New clinical risk score for colorectal liver metastases Clinical risk scores have limited accuracy as prognostic markers of progressionfree survival and overall survival for patients undergoing resection for colorectal liver metastases. Vinod Balachandran (New York, NY, USA), presented a study that developed and externally validated a prognostic multigene mRNA expression assay. A 20-gene molecular risk score was developed using a dataset (n=96) from Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (New York, NY, USA) and validated in a set of patients (n=119) from University Medical Center Utrecht
(Utrecht, Netherlands). Compared with three common clinical risk scores, the molecular risk score was signiﬁcantly prognostic for progression-free survival and overall survival in both patient sets.
Oncolytic immunotherapy for melanoma Final overall survival data from a phase 3 trial of a systemically active oncolytic immunotherapy, talimogene laherparepvec, shows signiﬁcant survival beneﬁt for patients with unresected stage IIIB/C/IV melanoma compared with patients treated with GM-CSF alone (HR 0·78, 95% CI 0·61–0·99, p=0·044). Presenting results of the OPTiM trial, in which 436 patients were randomly assigned in a 2:1 ratio to immunotherapy versus GM-CSF, Howard Kaufman (New Brunswick, NJ, USA) showed that a third of patients receiving the immunotherapy remained alive at 5 years and patients with stage IIIB/IIIC/IV M1a had a more pronounced beneﬁt (HR 0·56, 95% CI 0·40-0·79, p