What's New

The Thoracic Surgery Associates is constantly striving to improve our practice and will keep you abreast of new services, personnel, and opportuntities.

Dr. Cameron Presents Data on Hyperthermic Chemotherapy in Mesothelioma to the Western Thoracic Surgery Association Meeting on June 30, 2012.

Dr. Cameron presented data from experiments done at UCLA examining the role of hypethermia and chemotherapy in the intraoperative treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma to the Annual Meeting of the Western Thoracic Surgery Association in Wailea, Maui, Hawaii. Dr. Cameron's presentation was one of only 14 in the entire meeting and the only one addressing malignant pleural mesothelioma. The presentation showed extensive data on the parameters for effective hyperthermia use. The results indicated that the current use of 42 degrees (Celsius) and 1 hour of intraoperative hyperthermic chemotherapy, like is used in Boston with 42 degrees and single agent cisplatin, is essentially not clinically useful. This is some of the only data in the literature that examines the exact details and specifications as to how temperature and time effect specifically mesothelioma cells. Chemotherapy with at least two agents, i.e., cisplatin AND pemetrexed or cisplatin AND gemcitabine were equally effective and more effective than cisplatin alone as again is practiced in Boston and other centers. However, Dr. Cameron showed that the addition of hyperthermia had almost no additional effect on lowering mesothelioma cell killing. In Dr. Cameron's experiement, a maximum of <40% of the moderate chemotherapy/hperthermia effectiveness was attributed to hyperthermia at the maximum hyperthermia levels. This type of reduction in mesothelioma cell numbers would have no impact on the life of a human being since clinically effective treatments require several "log" changes in cell number to be effective in helping patients live longer, ie,. a decrease of >1000 times the original cell numbers. This landmark study predicts that any use of hyperthermic perfusion would require temperatures in the tissues (not just the liquid used for perfusion) of ideally 45 degrees. Because of these findings, Dr. Cameron said that there is essentially no benefit to this approach (at least as currently conceived and practiced). Other potential therapies may hold much more promise.

Thoracic Surgery Associates Office Move
At the end of February, 2010, the Thoracic Surgery Associates moved into a new office on Santa Monica Boulevard. This new office will provide a much quieter environment from our previous location and will allow us to use the entire space alone without the inconveniences of sharing space and resources with other physicians. The space was completely renovated by the building owner to meet our needs and is a fantastic space for us and our patients. We have labored to make the location as warm, comfortable, and home-like as possible for the benefit of our patients, many of whom are experiencing pain from surgery or other sources of discomfort.

New Presence Online

As of June 28, 2010, we now have a new website that we will continually update and improve to provide better resources for our patients. You can now find out everything about our practice and the latest from the world of thoracic surgery on our new website: www.mychestsurgeon.com.

News

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Mesothelioma

Recent Articles:

(Articles of particular interest in Red and Key Articles in Bold and Red)

 

Ho M, Feng M, Fisher RJ, Rader C, Pastan I. A novel high-affinity human
monoclonal antibody to mesothelin. Int J Cancer. 2010 Jul 15. [Epub ahead of
print] PubMed PMID: 20635390.

Kubo S, Kawasaki Y, Yamaoka N, Tagawa M, Kasahara N, Terada N, Okamura H.
Complete regression of human malignant mesothelioma xenografts following local
injection of midkine promoter-driven oncolytic adenovirus. J Gene Med. 2010
Aug;12(8):681-92. PubMed PMID: 20635326; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2938764.

Richter H, Hildebrandt G, Heilbronner R. Intradural Perineural Spread of
Mesothelioma Causing Myelopathy by Tethering of the Spinal Cord. Cen Eur
Neurosurg. 2010 Jul 15. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20635314.

Opitz I. Editorial comment May cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), p21 and p27
expression affect prognosis and therapeutic strategy of patients with malignant
pleural mesothelioma? Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2010 Sep;38(3):252-3. Epub 2010
Jul 15. PubMed PMID: 20634085.

Jin L, Amatya VJ, Takeshima Y, Shrestha L, Kushitani K, Inai K. Evaluation of 
apoptosis and immunohistochemical expression of the apoptosis-related proteins in
mesothelioma. Hiroshima J Med Sci. 2010 Jun;59(2):27-33. PubMed PMID: 20632685.

Belli C, Anand S, Panella M, Giovannini M, Tassi G, Fennell D, Mutti L. Will
antiangiogenic agents be a future for mesothelioma therapy? Curr Med Chem.
2010;17(27):3069-79. PubMed PMID: 20629625.

Tsuji S, Tsuura Y, Morohoshi T, Shinohara T, Oshita F, Yamada K, Kameda Y,
Ohtsu T, Nakamura Y, Miyagi Y. Secretion of intelectin-1 from malignant pleural
mesothelioma into pleural effusion. Br J Cancer. 2010 Aug 10;103(4):517-23. Epub 
2010 Jul 13. PubMed PMID: 20628387; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2939784.

Tan E, Warren N, Darnton AJ, Hodgson JT. Projection of mesothelioma mortality 
in Britain using Bayesian methods. Br J Cancer. 2010 Jul 27;103(3):430-6. Epub
2010 Jul 13. PubMed PMID: 20628377; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC2920029.

Jackaman C, Cornwall S, Graham PT, Nelson DJ. CD40-activated B cells
contribute to mesothelioma tumor regression. Immunol Cell Biol. 2010 Jul 13.
[Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20628372.

Kristensen LS, Nielsen HM, Hager H, Hansen LL. Methylation of MGMT in
malignant pleural mesothelioma occurs in a subset of patients and is associated
with the T allele of the rs16906252 MGMT promoter SNP. Lung Cancer. 2010 Jun 1.
[Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20627446.

Collegium Ramazzini. Asbestos is still with us: repeat call for a universal
ban. New Solut. 2010;20(2):257-66. PubMed PMID: 20621889.

Kawai T, Hiroi S, Nakanishi K, Takagawa K, Haba R, Hayashi K, Kawachi K,
Nozawa A, Hebisawa A, Nakatani Y. Lymphohistiocytoid mesothelioma of the pleura.
Pathol Int. 2010 Aug;60(8):566-74. PubMed PMID: 20618734.

Ho M, Feng M, Fisher RJ, Rader C, Pastan I. A novel high affinity human
monoclonal antibody to mesothelin. Int J Cancer. 2010 Jul 15. [Epub ahead of
print] PubMed PMID: 20635390.

Kubo S, Kawasaki Y, Yamaoka N, Tagawa M, Kasahara N, Terada N, Okamura H. Complete regression of human malignant mesothelioma xenografts following local
injection of midkine promoter-driven oncolytic adenovirus. J Gene Med. 2010 Jul
14. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20635326.

Richter H, Hildebrandt G, Heilbronner R. Intradural Perineural Spread of
Mesothelioma Causing Myelopathy by Tethering of the Spinal Cord. Cen Eur
Neurosurg. 2010 Jul 15. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20635314.

Opitz I. Editorial comment May cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), p21 and p27
expression affect prognosis and therapeutic strategy of patients with malignant
pleural mesothelioma? Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2010 Jul 13. [Epub ahead of print]
PubMed PMID: 20634085.

Jin L, Amatya VJ, Takeshima Y, Shrestha L, Kushitani K, Inai K. Evaluation of
apoptosis and immunohistochemical expression of the apoptosis-related proteins in
mesothelioma. Hiroshima J Med Sci. 2010 Jun;59(2):27-33. PubMed PMID: 20632685.

Belli C, Anand S, Panella M, Giovannini M, Tassi G, Fennell D, Mutti L. Will
Antiangiogenic Agents be a Future for Mesothelioma Therapy? Curr Med Chem. 2010
Jul 14. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20629625.

Tsuji S, Tsuura Y, Morohoshi T, Shinohara T, Oshita F, Yamada K, Kameda Y,
Ohtsu T, Nakamura Y, Miyagi Y. Secretion of intelectin-1 from malignant pleural
mesothelioma into pleural effusion. Br J Cancer. 2010 Jul 13. [Epub ahead of
print] PubMed PMID: 20628387.

Tan E, Warren N, Darnton AJ, Hodgson JT. Projection of mesothelioma mortality
in Britain using Bayesian methods. Br J Cancer. 2010 Jul 13. [Epub ahead of
print] PubMed PMID: 20628377.

Jackaman C, Cornwall S, Graham PT, Nelson DJ. CD40-activated B cells
contribute to mesothelioma tumor regression. Immunol Cell Biol. 2010 Jul 13.
[Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20628372.

Kristensen LS, Nielsen HM, Hager H, Hansen LL. Methylation of MGMT in
malignant pleural mesothelioma occurs in a subset of patients and is associated
with the T allele of the rs16906252 MGMT promoter SNP. Lung Cancer. 2010 Jun 1.
[Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20627446.

Ramazzini C. Asbestos is Still With Us: Repeat Call for a Universal Ban. New
Solut. 2010;20(2):257-66. PubMed PMID: 20621889.

Kawai T, Hiroi S, Nakanishi K, Takagawa K, Haba R, Hayashi K, Kawachi K,
Nozawa A, Hebisawa A, Nakatani Y. Lymphohistiocytoid mesothelioma of the pleura.
Pathol Int. 2010 Aug 1;60(8):566-74. PubMed PMID: 20618734.
 

Hasegawa S, Koshikawa-Yano M, Saito S, Morokoshi Y, Furukawa T, Aoki I, Saga
T. Molecular imaging of mesothelioma by detection of manganese-superoxide
dismutase activity using manganese-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging. Int J
Cancer. 2010 Jul 8. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20617513.

Rakovich G, Laflamme M, Ouellette D, Beauchamp G. Solitary fibrous tumour of
the pleura: A case report. Can Respir J. 2010 May-Jun;17(3):113-4. PubMed PMID:
20617210.

Yang H, Rivera Z, Jube S, Nasu M, Bertino P, Goparaju C, Franzoso G, Lotze MT,
Krausz T, Pass HI, Bianchi ME, Carbone M. Programmed necrosis induced by asbestos
in human mesothelial cells causes high-mobility group box 1 protein release and
resultant inflammation. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2010 Jun 28. [Epub ahead of
print] PubMed PMID: 20616036.

Hamaguchi N, Hamada H, Miyoshi S, Irifune K, Ito R, Miyazaki T, Higaki J. In
vitro and in vivo therapeutic efficacy of the PPAR-gamma agonist troglitazone in
combination with cisplatin against malignant pleural mesothelioma cell growth.
Cancer Sci. 2010 May 27. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20608936.
 

Agatsuma T, Koizumi T, Yasuo M, Urushihata K, Tsushima K, Yamamoto H, Hanaoka
M, Fukushima M, Honda T, Kubo K. Successful Salvage Chemotherapy with Gemcitabine
and Vinorelbine in a Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma Patient Previously Treated
with Pemetrexed. Jpn J Clin Oncol. 2010 Jul 4. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID:
20603247.

 

Sandeck HP, Roe OD, Kjaerheim K, Willen H, Larsson E. Re-evaluation of
histological diagnoses of malignant mesothelioma by immunohistochemistry. Diagn
Pathol. 2010 Jul 6;5(1):47. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20602796.


Watzka SB, Setinek U, Stubenberger EB, Tötsch M, Dekan G, Marcher M, Fleck T,  Müller MR. Integrin-linked kinase, phosphorylated AKT and the prognosis of malignant pleural mesothelioma. Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2010 Jun 24. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20580243.

 

Balestra MR, Baratti D, Crippa F, Laterza B, Kusamura S, Langer M, Deraco M. Cytoreductive surgery and hyperthermic intraperitoneal chemotherapy (HIPEC) in a  patient with peritoneal mesothelioma and HIV infection. Tumori. 2010 Mar-Apr;96(2):340-4. PubMed PMID: 20572597.

 

Porcel JM. Pearls and myths in pleural fluid analysis. Respirology. 2010 Jun
21. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20573057.

 

Tan K, Kajino K, Momose S, Masaoka A, Sasahara K, Shiomi K, Izumi H, Abe M, Ohtsuji N, Wang T, Hino O, Fujii H. Mesothelin (MSLN) promoter is hypomethylated  in malignant mesothelioma, but its expression is not associated with methylation status of the promoter. Hum Pathol. 2010 Jun 21. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20573372.

 

Etit D, Selig M, Faquin WC, Pitman MB, Tambouret RH, Misdraji J, Petur Nielsen G. The Utility of Electron Microscopy in Cytopathology. Ultrastruct Pathol. 2010 Jun 23. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20568988.

 

Alfonso HS, Reid A, de Klerk NH, Olsen N, Mina R, Ambrosini GL, Beilby J,
Berry G, Musk BA. Retinol supplementation and mesothelioma incidence in workers earlier exposed to blue asbestos (Crocidolite) at Wittenoom, Western Australia. Eur J Cancer Prev. 2010 Jun 21. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20571403

 

Kishimoto T, Gemba K, Fujimoto N, Aoe K, Kato K, Takeshima Y, Inai K. Clinical study on mesothelioma in Japan: Relevance to occupational asbestos exposure. Am J Ind Med. 2010 Jun 17. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20564517.

 

Yamada N, Oizumi S, Kikuchi E, Shinagawa N, Konishi-Sakakibara J, Ishimine A,  Aoe K, Gemba K, Kishimoto T, Torigoe T, Nishimura M. CD8(+) tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes predict favorable prognosis in malignant pleural mesothelioma after resection. Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2010 Jun 22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20567822.

 

Yamada N, Oizumi S, Kikuchi E, Shinagawa N, Konishi-Sakakibara J, Ishimine A, Aoe K, Gemba K, Kishimoto T, Torigoe T, Nishimura M. CD8(+) tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes predict favorable prognosis in malignant pleural mesothelioma after resection. Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2010 Jun 22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20567822.

 

Sterman DH, Haas AR. Malignant pleural mesothelioma: not immune to the effects of novel therapeutic interventions? Am J Respir Crit Care Med. 2010 Jun 15;181(12):1282-4. PubMed PMID: 20558640.

 

Kumar T, Patel N, Talwar A. Spontaneous regression of thoracic malignancies.
Respir Med. 2010 May 22. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20580882.

Watzka SB, Setinek U, Stubenberger EB, Tötsch M, Dekan G, Marcher M, Fleck T, Müller MR. Integrin-linked kinase, phosphorylated AKT and the prognosis of
malignant pleural mesothelioma. Eur J Cardiothorac Surg. 2010 Jun 24. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20580243.

Stahel RA, Weder W, Lievens Y, Felip E; ESMO Guidelines Working Group. Malignant pleural mesothelioma: ESMO Clinical Practice Guidelines for diagnosis, treatment and follow-up. Ann Oncol. 2010 May;21 Suppl 5:v126-8. PubMed PMID: 20555061.

 

Cortes-Dericks L, Carboni GL, Schmid RA, Karoubi G. Putative cancer stem cells in malignant pleural mesothelioma show resistance to cisplatin and pemetrexed. Int J Oncol. 2010 Aug;37(2):437-444. PubMed PMID: 20596671.

 

Anraku M, Tagawa T, Wu L, Yun Z, Keshavjee S, Zhang L, Johnston MR, de Perrot  M. Synergistic Antitumor Effects of Regulatory T Cell Blockade Combined with Pemetrexed in Murine Malignant Mesothelioma. J Immunol. 2010 Jun 14. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20548032.

 

Nowak AK, Armato SG 3rd, Ceresoli GL, Yildirim H, Francis RJ. Imaging in pleural mesothelioma: A review of Imaging Research Presented at the 9th International Meeting of the International Mesothelioma Interest Group. Lung Cancer. 2010 Jun 10. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20541834.

 

Yamaoka N, Kawasaki Y, Xu Y, Yamamoto H, Terada N, Okamura H, Kubo S. Establishment of in vivo fluorescence imaging in mouse models of malignant
mesothelioma. Int J Oncol. 2010 Aug;37(2):273-279. PubMed PMID: 20596654.

Kohno H, Amatya VJ, Takeshima Y, Kushitani K, Hattori N, Kohno N, Inai K.
Aberrant promoter methylation of WIF-1 and SFRP1, 2, 4 genes in mesothelioma. Oncol Rep. 2010 Aug;24(2):423-431. PubMed PMID: 20596629.

Wang T, Kajino K, Abe M, Tan K, Maruo M, Sun G, Hagiwara Y, Maeda M, Hino O. Suppression of cell death by the secretory form of N-terminal ERC/mesothelin. Int J Mol Med. 2010 Aug;26(2):185-191. PubMed PMID: 20596597.

Pala C, Paliogiannis P, Serventi F, Trignano E, Trignano M. Multimodality
approach to malignant pleural mesothelioma. A case report. Ann Ital Chir. 2010 Jan-Feb;81(1):37-40. PubMed PMID: 20593749.

Chung CT, Santos Gda C, Hwang DM, Ludkovski O, Pintilie M, Squire JA, Tsao MS. FISH assay development for the detection of p16/CDKN2A deletion in malignant pleural mesothelioma. J Clin Pathol. 2010 Jul;63(7):630-4. PubMed PMID: 20591913.

 

Christensen BC, Houseman EA, Poage GM, Godleski JJ, Bueno R, Sugarbaker DJ, Wiencke JK, Nelson HH, Marsit CJ, Kelsey KT. Integrated Profiling Reveals a Global Correlation between Epigenetic and Genetic Alterations in Mesothelioma. Cancer Res. 2010 Jun 29. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20587528. Ng JS. Vinflunine: review of a new vinca alkaloid and its potential role in oncology. J Oncol Pharm Pract. 2010 Jun 28. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID:
20584744.

 

Kim ST, Park JY, Lee J, Park JO, Park YS, Lim HY, Kang WK, Park SH. The Efficacy of the Frontline Platinum-based Combination Chemotherapy in Malignant Peritoneal Mesothelioma. Jpn J Clin Oncol. 2010 Jun 9. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20534685.

 

Hollington P. Benign multicystic mesothelioma. ANZ J Surg. 2010
Mar;80(3):186-7. PubMed PMID: 20575924.

 

Scherpereel A, Berghmans T, Lafitte JJ, Colinet B, Richez M, Bonduelle Y,
Meert AP, Dhalluin X, Leclercq N, Paesmans M, Willems L; J.P. Sculier for the
European Lung Cancer Working Party (ELCWP). Valproate-doxorubicin: promising therapy for progressing mesothelioma. A phase II study. Eur Respir J. 2010 Jun 7. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20530048.

 

Krug LM, Dao T, Brown AB, Maslak P, Travis W, Bekele S, Korontsvit T, Zakhaleva V, Wolchok J, Yuan J, Li H, Tyson L, Scheinberg DA. WT1 peptide
vaccinations induce CD4 and CD8 T cell immune responses in patients with
mesothelioma and non-small cell lung cancer. Cancer Immunol Immunother. 2010 Jun  8. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20532500.

 

Gregoire M. Dendritic cell vaccination as a treatment modality for mesothelioma. Expert Rev Respir Med. 2010 Jun;4(3):311-4. PubMed PMID: 20524913.

 

Sugarbaker DJ, Wolf AS. Surgery for malignant pleural mesothelioma. Expert Rev Respir Med. 2010 Jun;4(3):363-72. PubMed PMID: 20524919.

 

Van Schil PE, Baas P, Gaafar R, Maat AP, van de Pol M, Hasan B, Klomp HM, Abdelrahman AM, Welch J, Van Meerbeeck J; on behalf of the EORTC Lung Cancer Group. Phase II trial of trimodality therapy for malignant pleural mesothelioma (EORTC 08031). Eur Respir J. 2010 Jun 4. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20525721.

 

Finkelstein MM, Meisenkothen C. Malignant Mesothelioma Among Employees of a Connecticut Factory that Manufactured Friction Materials Using Chrysotile Asbestos. Ann Occup Hyg. 2010 Jun 3. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 20522518v

 

Veltman JD, Lambers ME, van Nimwegen M, de Jong S, Hendriks RW, Hoogsteden HC, Aerts JG, Hegmans JP. Low-dose cyclophosphamide synergizes with dendritic cell-based immunotherapy in antitumor activity. J Biomed Biotechnol. 2010;2010:798467. Epub 2010 May 23. PubMed PMID: 20508851

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other Cancer News

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Cancer Cause is Increasingly Shown to be from Inflammation
This article talks about how cancer is often caused by chronic inflammation. Although the cancers that are addressed are not "chest" cancers, similar situations exist for chest cancers including lung
OncolTimes32(13)_36-7_2010(Carlson).pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [460.1 KB]
Chemotherapy Before Surgery Helps People Survive Esophageal Cancer
This article describes some information that supports the use of chemtotherapy before surgery in patients with cancer of the esophagus.
OncolNewsInt17(4)_1-3_2010(Alllum).pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [27.1 KB]
Earthwooms Never Get Cancer!! A Lead for Human Anti-Cancer Agents?
This article covers several compounds that are involved in earthworm immune systems that seem to prevent earthworms from ever getting cancer. Some of these agents hold future promise for human cancer
OncolNewsInt19(7)_21_2010(Cooper).pdf
Adobe Acrobat document [53.7 KB]

Interesting Facts!

 Insurers pushing affordable plans that limit physician choice.

The New York Times (7/18, Abelson) reported that "the country's biggest insurers are promoting affordable plans with reduced premiums that require participants to use a narrower selection of doctors or hospitals." While the plans "are likely to appeal especially to small businesses" that already provide employee coverage but are worried about costs, "large employers, as well, are starting to show some interest, and insurers and consultants expect that, over time, businesses of all sizes will gravitate toward these plans in an effort to cut costs." They say the tradeoff will be that "more Americans will be asked to pay higher prices for the privilege of choosing or keeping their own doctors if they are outside the new networks."

        In a Kaiser Health News (7/19, Cohn) column, New Republic editor Jonathan Cohn says, "This isn't the first time insurers have offered plans with fewer treatment options. It happened most famously in the 1990s, when insurers first introduced the concept of 'managed care' on a wide scale. Consumers didn't like it then, and they might not like it now." With respect to some Massachusetts businesses dropping employee coverage, the article adds that "every company that offers insurance will [not] keep doing it forever. Over time, some businesses will inevitably decide to drop coverage, just as they do now."

        Rising health insurance premiums in Massachusetts prompting small businesses to drop coverage. The Boston Globe (7/18, Lazar) reported that, in Massachusetts, "the relentlessly rising cost of health insurance is prompting some small" businesses "to drop coverage for their workers and encourage them to sign up for state-subsidized care instead, a trend that, some analysts say, could eventually weigh heavily on the state's already-stressed budget." In fact, "since April 1, the date many insurance contracts are renewed for small businesses, the owners of about 90 small companies terminated their insurance plans with Braintree-based broker Jeff Rich and indicated in a follow-up survey that they were relying on publicly-funded insurance for their employees." But, "state officials said they have not seen convincing evidence that there is a trend. There has not been an unusually large spike in enrollment in Commonwealth Care, the subsidized insurance program, according to spokesman Richard Powers."

 

AVASTIN ,ERBITUX, EVISTA (Raloxifene), GLEEVEC

AVASTIN – Avastin, when used to treat colorectal cancer, sold for $50,000 per year. However, once it was approved to treat breast and lung cancer as well, Genentech announced a new price tag: $100,000 per year, even though it may extend your life by no more than a few months. ERBITUX – Another colorectal cancer drug, with a price tag of nearly $10,000 per month, even though there is not a single study showing it helps colorectal cancer patients live longer. EVISTA (Raloxifene) -- This Eli Lilly drug was found to prevent breast cancer by one-third in a study of more than 10,000 postmenopausal women. Your true cost? Trading your breast cancer prevention for a 50 percent increased risk of fatal strokes and blood clots. Ironically, Evista was once sold as an osteoporosis drug, being illegally promoted for treating cardiovascular disease back in 2002. GLEEVEC – Also sold under the name Glivec. This cancer drug, used to treat leukemia, unfortunately also kills heart muscle cells, which may cause fatal congestive heart failure. ABRAXANE – A new version of an old cancer drug, Taxol, sells for $4,200 per dose. The older version, which has similar effects, costs 25 times less.