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This research study, facilitated by the patient-founded Addario Lung Cancer Medical Institute (ALCMI), includes collaborating institutions in the United States and Europe: University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA (Barbara Gitlitz, MD), Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, MA (Geoffrey Oxnard, MD), University of Torino, Turin, Italy (Giorgio Scagliotti, MD, PhD), and soon others.
To perform a focused, multi-institutional, prospective genomic analysis of primary lung cancer occurring in 60 patients diagnosed at age less than 40 years to provide new insight into lung cancer biology, facilitate the identification of new genome-defined subtypes of lung cancer, accelerate delivery of targeted therapies and lay the groundwork for further studies of lung cancer risk and inheritance.
Impact on Lung Cancer Community
We hope this study will lay the groundwork for discovery of novel targetable genotypes as well as heritable and environmental lung cancer risk factors. Performing comprehensive genomics on lung cancer tumors from patients diagnosed at age 40 or younger represents a new and untapped strategy for identification of new targetable genotypes. Discovery of these genotypes is the first step in developing specific drugs to target and inhibit these mutations that drive the cancer. Our results may be an impetus for other groups to further explore other specific populations of lung cancer until it is no longer a disease with a “cookie cutter” approach to treatments and rather one where a personalized approach leads to significantly improved outcomes.
A unique focus of our project is that
we want to benefit our study participants now!
Thus, we will also review a comprehensive panel of clinical genomics looking for target mutations for which a drug might exist on or off of a clinical trial. We will share this information with the study participant and their referring oncologists in “real time” in order to possibly facilitate treatment options.
Our evolving understanding of lung cancer and new molecular tools to
study the genomic make up of cancer has set the stage for this exciting study.
It is becoming increasingly evident that this disease can be divided into different subgroups based upon certain clinical characteristics. For example, lung cancers in non-smokers and East Asians more commonly carry mutations in the EGFR gene, whereas lung cancers occurring in patients with a smoking history more commonly carry mutation in the KRAS gene. Each of these genomic subtypes of lung cancer requires a different treatment approach.
More recently, two new genomic sub-types of lung cancer have been identified, with mutations in the ALK and ROS1 genes. Interestingly, both of these types of lung cancers are associated with a younger age of diagnosis. Both of these sub-types are also treatable with a new targeted drug called crizotinib. This suggests that young age may be an under-appreciated clinical marker of new genomic subtypes to be discovered. An important hope for this research project is that we will find a new genotype-defined sub-type of lung cancer deserving a distinct treatment strategy.
If you have any questions regarding the online informed consent form or this study please contact Nancy Berman, RN, BSN, OCN, Lung Nurse Navigator, USC/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center at 323-680-3534 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or Gina Tse, RN, Protocol Coordinator, USC/Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center at 323-865-0514 or by email at email@example.com.
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