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The Lede, Good News for Some Cancer Patients

The Lede, Monday June 4, 2018
By David Royse

A Senate committee in New Jersey today will take up sports betting legislation. More from the Press of Atlantic City



There’s good news today out of the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting here in Chicago. It’s the big deal conference of the year for cancer researchers – and it’s watched closely by not only oncologists and other advocates for patients, but by drug company investors, too. A lot of big cancer drug trial news is released at ASCO – and today was no exception.

For cancer patients – especially future ones – the news that Merck’s Keytruda drug performed very well in certain lung cancer patients who didn’t get chemotherapy is good, not just in the sense of the individual drug’s performance, but because it’s another indication that immunotherapy drugs may be a big part of the future of cancer treatment. And that could mean an end to the dreaded chemotherapy regimens (regimina?) that can be so difficult in and of themselves.

The immediate big news was Merck’s news on its Keytruda trial. More on that here.

Keytruda also may be able to help men with prostate cancer, though the results there aren’t as spectacular as the lung cancer trial. Still, it’s the first time a trial has shown a benefit from immunotherapy in prostate cancer patients, according to a doctor quoted by USA Today

And there’s also good news for women with breast cancer. Most patients with an intermediate risk of cancer recurrence can be treated with surgery and hormone therapy and avoid chemo according the largest breast cancer treatment trial ever conducted that was also discussed at ACSO. More on that, also from USA Today


Overall, the drug industry investment community watches the ASCO meeting for a sense of the promising and the disappointing. More on the “winners and losers” from STAT, and also from Forbes.


Most Stunning Sentence of the Day in Emerging Industry News

OK, this depends on your definition of stunning and your definition of emerging – because I’m talking about something here that has taken a bit over a decade. But, taking the long view of industry development, this is remarkable. Netflix is now the most valuable media company. And here’s the sentence I found so fascinating:

“An 11-year-old app that charges $11 a month is worth more to investors than the legacy conglomerates that earn billions more from TV advertising, box-office hits and cable and internet packages.”

The full story from Bloomberg


Apple’s big developers conference, WWDC, is going on out in San Jose. Here’s news on some changes to Siri.  (By the way, I hoped you laughed, at least a little, at a section that keeps an eye on Apple called Apple Watch.)


Will supply Pacifica Mini-Vans to Waymo’s driverless fleet. Fiat-Chrysler

Is betting on self-service kiosks. Marketwatch

The world’s most polluted city, Delhi, is under court order to allow only ultra low sulfur fuel. There’s hope that when the rest of India follows in two years, the super-polluted air there will clear a bit. Next City

Here’s hoping. Have a good week.




About David Royse

David Royse
David Royse is the Editor-in-Chief of Ledetree.com. He has been a professional journalist for more than 20 years, including stints with The Associated Press and The News Service of Florida. He enjoys writing about health and medical science, and hopeful stories about scientific breakthroughs and new technology.

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