Posts from the ‘Conferences’ Category
May 21st, 2013
The 2013 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) is fast approaching, and for many in cancer drug development, it is one of the landmarks of the year.
This year, there’s a lot of interesting data on PD-1 and cancer immunotherapy, something we picked up on before the annual meeting last year. Sally Church, PhD is in the process of finalizing her pre-ASCO video and it will be available soon.
For a meeting that is typically orientated around solid tumors, there is a lot of data at the meeting on Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL).
The CLL landscape is set to change, with new treatment options on the horizon. Ibrutinib received FDA Breakthrough designation earlier this year in three different indications, and we will be writing more about this market in a forthcoming Pharma Strategy Report.
For those clients and potential clients interested in learning more about our capabilities or discussing our services, we will be in Chicago for ASCO – please do contact us if you would like to meet up.
February 18th, 2013
Celgene Corporation’s nab-paclitaxel (Abraxane) will be a new treatment for advanced pancreatic cancer. That was the news from the 2013 American Society of Clinical Oncology Gastrointestinal Cancers symposium (ASCO GI) that took place in San Francisco last month.
At the 2012 European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) meeting in Vienna, Sally Church, PhD noted on Pharma Strategy Blog that pancreatic cancer experts such as Margaret Tempero, MD were excited about the prospect of nab-paclitaxel in pancreatic cancer
The data presented at ASCO GI showed that for patients with metastatic adenocarcinoma of the pancreas, the addition of nab-paclitaxel to the chemotherapy gemcitabine led to an increase in median overall survival of 1.8 months compared to receiving gemcitabine alone (8.5 months versus 6.7 months, Hazard Ratio: 0.72, P=0.000015). While this may seem a small amount of time, there are few effective treatments for advanced pancreatic cancer.
By showing a significant increase in overall survival, Abraxane met the primary endpoint of the phase 3 MPACT clinical trial, and is likely to be approved by the FDA in the future.
Abraxane will provide a new treatment option in pancreatic cancer
The Abraxane data presented at ASCO GI was good, but it was not great. Sally Church interviewed Dr Hedy Lee Kindler, Associate Professor of Medicine at the University of Chicago about the significance of the data.
In her “Making a difference in Pancreatic Cancer Interview“, Dr Kindler says that for most of her patients she would still use FOLFIRINOX. This is a chemotherapy combination (5-fluorouracil, irinotecan, and oxaliplatin) that has side effects that need to be carefully managed.
It is only suitable for those patients who are well enough to take it, but offers a superior survival advantage in advanced pancreatic cancer. Data from the PRODIGE 4/ACCORD 11 study presented at the 2010 meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) showed the median overall survival time for patients receiving the FOLFIRINOX regimen to be 11.1 months.
Where we expect Abraxane to receive most pancreatic cancer use in the United States is from community oncologists who don’t wish to manage the side effects associated with FOLFIRINOX
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November 29th, 2012
Multiple Myeloma (MM) is forecast to be a hot topic at the forthcoming annual meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) that starts in Atlanta next week.
There are four “Super Friday” satellite symposia and over 700+ MM abstracts that will be presented in multiple oral and poster sessions. If you add in the recent FDA approval for carfilzomib (Kyprolis) and the anticipation that pomalidomide (Actimid) will be approved soon, there’s a lot going on.
We specialize in Thought Leader or Key Opinion Leader (KOL) market research. Often projects are a hybrid where we discuss high-level strategic issues with KOLs and ask community hematology-oncologists or medical oncologists more practice-focused questions.
Based on our experience, multiple myeloma is a challenging topic for pharma market research:
- Treatment regimens can be complex, even some community medical oncologists have told us they are challenged by them.
- Treatment decisions are multifactorial and individualized, so it’s often hard for community based physicians to generalize.
- High prescribing community physicians may be in small towns not near a market research facility, requiring telephone interviews.
- Thought leaders are busy people – you need to focus on a few key questions you want them to answer.
- Access to top-tier thought leaders is difficult, they often will only talk to people they know or have met at medical or scientific meetings.
If you have plans to be in Atlanta for ASH, do contact us. We’d welcome the opportunity to meet up and tell you more about what we do.
October 29th, 2012
The 2012 Chemotherapy Foundation Symposium takes place at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square, New York City from November 7 – 10. Fortunately, the timing avoids the disruption expected this week from Hurricane Sandy.
The Greenspan Meeting as it’s also known (in recognition of the late Ezra M. Greenspan MD, the symposium founder) provides the opportunity for oncologists to learn about new developments in cancer therapy.
It is a joint presentation by the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and the non-profit Chemotherapy Foundation.
Sally Church, PhD who frequently attends says she particularly “enjoys the lectures that give a broad strategic overview of a particular topic.”
There’s usually a good turnout from the NJ/NY pharma industry and it’s interesting to talk to local academic and community oncologists about their practice.
You can read more about last year’s prostate cancer session at the 2011 Chemotherapy Foundation Symposium on Biotech Strategy Blog. The informative sessions cover a lot of ground and are well worth attending.
Update November 1, 2012 – Symposium not cancelled after Storm Sandy
Good to see The Chemotherapy Foundation announce on twitter today that the symposium will go on as scheduled. Hopefully the transport network will have some semblance of normality by then otherwise it will remain a challenge for many in the local area to attend.
The Chemotherapy Foundation Symposium will go on as scheduled. You can still register on chemotherapyfoundationsymposium.org
— Chemo Fdtn Symposium (@tcfsymposium) November 1, 2012
August 28th, 2012
For those interested in oncology new product development, and cancer biomarkers in particular, the joint ASCO-EORTC-NCI “Markers in Cancer” meeting in Hollywood, FL (near Fort Lauderdale) from October 11-13, 2012 looks well worth attending:
Markers in Cancer 2012 will stimulate discussion on the use of biomarkers as a tool for screening, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. This year’s theme is “Bridging the Translational Divides” with a focus on practical aspects of biomarker development, future approaches, and optimal applications in translational research.
In his video preview of the meeting, Dr James Abbruzzese from the MD Anderson Center Center, says that the emphasis of this years meeting is to try and provide a roadmap to take work from the laboratory and translate that into patient care and actual clinical practice.
An area where biomarkers may have an important role to play is in selecting patients for clinical trials, especially where there is the opportunity of misdiagnosis. If inappropriate patients are selected, then not only may they not respond to the treatment, but they could negatively skew or undermine the clinical trial results. Biomarkers can also be important in helping to make differential diagnoses.
Cancer clinical trials such as the “catch-all” ridaforlimus phase III SUCCEED trial in sarcoma, for example, can end up showing favorable responses in some patients and little or no-responses in others, thereby canceling out the responders. More predictive biomarkers are needed to help determine the patient response to a particular treatment or identify those patients who are most likely to respond.
For those unable to make it to Florida, ASCO are offering a “virtual meeting” that will give access to recordings of the main presentations.
August 6th, 2012
When the dog days of summer and the Olympics are over, the normal rhythm of pharma marketing and new product development life continues with the major medical congresses and scientific meetings that take place in the Autumn/Fall.
A few of the meetings we will be attending and ones to watch out for include:
ESMO 2012 Congress, Vienna (#ESMO12) 28 September – 2 October, 2012
Building on the highly successful European Multidisciplinary Cancer Congress held in Stockholm last year, we expect the 2012 Congress of the European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO) to be an exciting meeting.
ESMO have already announced that abstract submissions are up 30%. We expect a lot of interesting new data to be presented in Vienna, especially in light of the fact that the deadline for presentation at ASCO in June was very early this year. If you are interested in attending, the late registration deadline is August 22nd.
NYAS Pancreatic Cancer: Translation of New Ideas, New York, 12 October, 2012
For those interested in pancreatic cancer and insights into some of the preclinical and translational research that is being done with targeted drugs, a half-day meeting at The New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS) looks worth attending.
The keynote speaker is Dafna Bar-Sagi, PhD, Professor and Vice Dean for Science at the NYU Langone Medical Center. Icarus Consultants is pleased to be a promotional partner for the event. The inexpensive registration fee for nonmembers is only $40, with a networking reception to follow.
EORTC-NCI-AACR Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics, Dublin 6 – 9 November, 2012
Hosted by the European Organization for Research and Treatment (EORTC), National Cancer Institute (NCI) and American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), this symposium is one of Sally Church’s favorite meetings of the year, with its focus on innovation in drug development, target selection and new products.
We hope to see you in Vienna, New York or Dublin!
June 15th, 2012
After a hectic ASCO 2012, the next conference we will be attending is The New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS), Inositol Phospholipid Signaling in Physiology and Disease event on June 26 -27, 2012 in New York.
The NYAS often run events that are on a par with the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), where leading researchers present their early-stage findings to the science community. Cancer signaling pathways are complex and understanding basic science in this area is key to rational drug development and target identification.
The keynote lecture is by Lewis Cantley, who will speak on “Phosphoinositol Signaling and Disease.” Of the many interesting topics from a new product development perspective that will be discussed, a few that caught our attention include:
- Lloyd Trotman, PTEN Activity
- Neil Rosen, Mechanisms of PI3K Inhibition in Cancer
- David Solit, Interrupting the PI3K-AKT-mTOR Pathway in Cancer Therapy
Researchers from Novartis and Gilead will also discuss some of the challenges in clinical development and targeting PI3Kδ in lymphoid malignancies.
If you are interested in the PI3-kinase area for drug development or want to learn more about the where the cutting edge of cancer research is at in this area, then the NYAS event on inositol phospholipid signaling looks well worth attending.
Icarus Consultants is delighted to be a promotional partner with The New York Academy of Sciences for this event, and in return we can offer readers a 15% discount on the cost of meeting registration. Use the special code INOSITOL15 when making your booking – please note this does not apply to existing registrations.
If you can’t make it to New York, Sally Church will be writing about it on Pharma Strategy Blog, unless a budding young scientist attending the meeting would like to write a guest post – if that’s you, then please do contact us and we would be delighted to hear from you!
Update June 28, 2012
The New York Academy of Sciences meeting was well worth attending.
Sally Church, PhD has written about data presented at the meeting on PI3K delta and Bruton’s Tyrosine Kinase (BTK) inhibitors in development for CLL & NHL.
In her Pharma Strategy Blog post, Sally discusses some of the challenges and opportunities for GS-1101 (formerly CAL-101) and ibrutinib.
May 15th, 2012
The 2012 annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) takes place in Chicago in just over two weeks time from June 1 – 5. The ASCO abstracts will be publicly available tomorrow (May 16) at 6pm EDT.
We’re looking forward to being at ASCO, and picking up the latest data for new products and evaluating the impact this may have on our understanding of key pathways and drug development targets.
If you want to know what Sally Church, PhD predicts will be highlights of the ASCO 2012 meeting (in the absence of any abstract information) then watch her informative video and check out her ASCO preview post on Pharma Strategy Blog.
If you plan to be at ASCO 2012 and would like to meet up and discuss our capabilities, please contact us.
April 21st, 2012
The annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), held in Chicago earlier this month, is one of the most important meetings of the year for cancer scientists, pharma/biotech drug development and new products professionals.
Bill Sellers, in the AACR plenary session, described how Novartis are using the Cancer Cell Line Encyclopedia (CCLE) in conjunction with the Broad Institute to identify promising new compounds.
As Sally Church, PhD noted on Pharma Strategy Blog in her post on the highlights of AACR 2012:
“What made the meeting exciting for me was the sheer number of new compounds emerging from late preclinical to early phase 1.”
Two of the many promising new drugs in early stages of development were highlighted on Biotech Strategy Blog:
AZD3514 (AstraZeneca), a selective androgen receptor down regulator (SARD) in phase 1 clinical trials for castration resistant prostate cancer (CRPC).
ABT-199 (Abbott), a new Bcl-2 inhibitor (that improves on navitoclax), in phase 1 drug development for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL).
There were many noteworthy posters presented at AACR particularly from young researchers
e.g. “Overcoming resistance to EGFR-tyrosine kinase inhibitor therapy in non-small cell lung cancer” was a poster that suggested the prospect of future drug development targets.
During the high quality poster and oral sessions, we met numerous people including CEOs of baby biotechs, young researchers and clinicians with an interest in translational research, including Laura Strong, Ph.D President & COO of Quintessence Biosciences (@scientre), David Woessner who was presenting his PhD research (@pinfoto) and Philippe Aftimos, MD from Belgium (@aftimosp), all of whom were actively sharing their observations during numerous sessions via Twitter during the conference.
The annual meeting is not just about basic science though, but also drug development strategy and emerging research trends, such as the automation of preclinical drug discovery, as well as the collaboration between academia and Pharma/Biotech in combination clinical trials using two novel compounds from different companies. This last trend, I am pleased to say, has already begun and will hopefully continue apace in the future.
If you were not able to attend AACR, then Sally Church aggregated all the #AACR tweets from the meeting on Pharma Strategy Blog. AACR also have webcasts of some of the sessions available, including some with free access.
We’re already looking forward to AACR 2013 in Washington, DC and the timing of the meeting means it should take place when the renowned Cherry Blossom are in full bloom. Hopefully, this will provide a great opportunity for another Pharma Strategy Blog video!
March 10th, 2012
One of the emerging trends we saw at the recent European Association of Urology (EAU) Congress in Paris was an increase in the number of plenary and session presentations by physicians from Eastern European countries.
This trend is set to continue, and we expect to see more physicians from the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India & China) group of countries and other emerging markets presenting at global science and medical meetings in the future.
Poland is a good example of a country that should be on the radar of any global pharmaceutical company. It is one of the fastest growing economies in Europe, and was the only European country to avoid a recession in 2008-2009.
It was interesting to note that Tomasz Borkowski (Department of Urology at the Medical University of Warsaw) who gave a major session presentation at EAU on “Cancer induced bone disease – prevention and treatment’ listed only one company on his disclosures.
Clearly, some companies are ahead of others in identifying and building relationships with thought or key opinion leaders (KOLs) as they are commonly known.
One of the services we offer clients is market research with thought leaders at the global, national and regional level. Like all market research, this is anonymous – you don’t know the name or the institution and the physician doesn’t know who the sponsor is. This allows the doctor to speak more freely. This type of market research can provide valuable insights into what they think about a product or market opportunity with less bias.
Do you know who your thought leaders are and what think about your product? If not, please contact us and we would be delighted to help you meet your brand business goals.