August 17, 2017 – Moving Forward


Anchor lead: How can new cancer drugs be brought to clinical use faster? Elizabeth Tracey reports

How can drugs in development be brought to people who need them faster? That question is of particular importance in cancer, where the promise of new interventions, most especially immunotherapy, are tantalizingly close. Liz Jaffee, a cancer expert at Johns Hopkins and president elect of the American Association for Cancer Research, describes a recent visit to Capitol Hill to inform lawmakers.

Jaffee: It’s about how do we move because we’ve got lots of different agents that are being developed, how do we now move these combinations into patients safely and also quickly. The types of models of drug development we were using for thirty years they just don’t pertain to cancer drug development now. We start the therapies, a new therapy a few patients are already responding, so we can move these therapies in a few years to approval rather than in ten to fifteen years. :27

Jaffee notes that combination therapies are of particular promise in cancer therapy, and these too require a different research and approval process to bring them to those who need them. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.