As we celebrate the 100-year milestone of UCLA, we'd like to acknowledge the contributions of UCLA Health’s Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. Since its inception, the center has dedicated itself to providing the best in leading-edge and traditional cancer treatments and expertly guiding the next generation of medical research. Transformative research work from the IUO co-Director Arie Belldegrun and IUO Board Member Dennis Slamon was highlighted
July 12, 2021
Swim Across America Los Angeles Open Water Swim 2021 - Over the past two years, the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center has joined with Swim Across America to raise funds for cancer research. Physicians, scientists, staff, volunteers and cancer survivors like Dan Simonelli have all come together to benefit local cancer research and clinical trials at UCLA. Swim Across America has announced that the inaugural Swim Across America Los Angeles Open Water Swim will be held on October 16th, 2021 at Veteran’s Park, Redondo Beach, and registration is now open! "Make Waves to Fight Cancer" and join us to swim or volunteer, or you can even participate virtually through the new Swim Across America My Way program. For information >
July 9, 2021
Drs. Jeremie Calais, Johannes Czernin, Matthew Rettig – A new prognostic tool developed by faculty from the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology and five other institutions helps predict which men with advanced metastatic prostate cancer will respond favorably to a novel targeted therapy. The tool, described in a study published today in Lancet Oncology, analyzes a wide spectrum of imaging and clinical data and is intended to assist physicians considering treating patients with Lutetium-177 prostate-specific membrane antigen, or LuPSMA. The predictive tool — commonly called a nomogram — was developed by researchers from institutions across Europe, Australia and the U.S. who analyzed data from 270 prostate cancer patients who underwent LuPSMA treatment in clinical trials or via compassionate use. Read more at UCLA Newsroom > and UCLA Health Newsroom >
July 9, 2021
Andrew Goldstein, PhD – Dr. Goldstein, PhD, assistant professor in the departments of Molecular, Cell & Developmental Biology and Urology, and a member of the Broad Stem Cell Research Center, Institute of Urologic Oncology, and Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCLA, is participating in a study that could lead federal regulators to reassess restrictions on gay men donating blood. The Advance Study aims to find out whether asking would-be donors about risky behaviors could be a safe alternative to screening out all men who have recently had sex with men. Read more >
July 1, 2021
Amar U. Kishan, MD – Men with high-risk prostate cancer with at least one additional aggressive feature have the best outcomes when treated with multiple healthcare disciplines, known as multimodality care, according to a UCLA study led by Dr. Kishan, chief of genitourinary oncology and vice chair of clinical and translational research in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. The study found no difference in prostate cancer-specific deaths across treatment modalities when patients received guideline-concordant multimodality therapy, which in this case was inclusion of hormone therapy for men receiving radiation and a low-bar for postoperative radiation in men undergoing surgery. The research team did however, find significant differences in deaths when guideline-concordant multimodality care was not delivered. Those treated with external beam radiotherapy or external beam radiotherapy with a brachytherapy boost were consistently associated with lower rates of distant metastasis (8% with EBRT+BT, 16% with EBRT, and 24% with RP, at 10 years). UCLA Health News Brief > Full article >
June 21, 2021
Matthew Rettig, MD –The Medical Director of the Prostate Cancer Program at the Institute of Urologic Oncology at UCLA, Dr. Rettig, said that even if screenings aren’t performed right away, men should at least start talking about them with their doctors early in life. “I think I would have that conversation fairly early on in life, maybe even in (your) 30s or 40s, about when to initiate screening,” When should men be screened for prostate cancer? | NBC’s “Today”
‘Friends star James Michael Tyler, who played Gunter, has prostate cancer NBC Today
Feature on James Michael Tyler, the actor who played sarcastic coffee shop employee Gunther on “Friends,” includes interview with Matthew Rettig, MD, medical director, prostate cancer program of the Institute of Urologic Oncology at UCLA and member of the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.
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Matthias Benz, MD –IUO Member Dr. Benz, Assistant Professor of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology and the Radiological Sciences at DGSOM shared that “…the first PET/MR scanner is expected to be installed at UCLA in late May or early June of 2021. There are only around 250 dedicated PET/MR systems operational worldwide, with around 50 located in the UC (compared to over 2,000 sites using PET and PET/CT systems in the US). PET/MR is a hybrid imaging device that is still mostly limited to large academic centers.” Images from a PET/MR scanner encompass the entire body from head to mid-thigh or foot and generate PET/MR images simultaneously. The radiation dosage is lower, given the performance of both procedures at the same time, not to mention the convenience of conducting the imaging procedures together. Contact Radiology to learn more at (310) 301-6800.
June 05, 2021
Mark Litwin, MD –Expert commentary by Mark Litwin, MD, chair of urology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and Institute of Urologic Oncology Board Member, on common symptoms of testicular cancer in men. ‘Everything just stopped': Olympian Nathan Adrian on his life-changing battle with testicular cancer –NBC 6
June 03, 2021
Amar U. Kishan, MD –NBC News story on Men’s Health quoting Dr. Kishan, chief of genitourinary oncology and vice chair of clinical and translational research in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s approval of a new imaging technique for prostate cancer that locates lesions in the pelvic area and other parts of the body to which the tumors have migrated. The prostate-specific membrane antigen PET imaging, or PSMA PET, was a collaboration between UCLA and UCSF co-led by Jeremie Calais, MD, assistant professor of molecular and medical pharmacology at the David Geffen School of Medicine and member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology ad the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center at UCLA. FDA approves new imaging tool to find advanced prostate cancer –NBC News
May 25, 2021
Drs. Arie Belldegrun, Paul Boutros, Matthew Rettig - UCLA Los Angeles Bioscience Ecosystem Summit 2021 or LABEST is the ultimate bioscience conference in the LA region where hundreds of researchers from UCLA, Caltech, City of Hope, USC, The Lundquist Instituteand Cedars Sinai converge to present their latest innovations. Hosted by UCLA Technology Development Group, over 1,100 attendees attended a panel moderated by Dr. Arie Belldegrun, UCLA Faculty Member, Institute Founding Director, and Chief Executive Officer, Bellco Capital. “Meet Leaders in the Business of Life Sciences” engaged Biopharma leaders to address scientific innovation, drug development, financing and startup trends in Los Angeles. The panel included: David Chang, Chief Executive Officer, Allogene Therapeutics • Levi Garraway, Chief Medical Officer, Genentech • Craig Gordon, Partner, Capital Group • Daphne Koller, Chief Executive Officer, insitro • Christi Shaw, Chief Executive Officer, Kite, a Gilead Company. See: Youtube Video. Professor spotlight presentations were made by Institute Members Dr. Paul Boutros and Dr. Matthew Rettig.
May 24, 2021
Honoring their Asian heritage, 3 physicians make their mark at UCLA Health
As our nation celebrates this month the history and contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, three UCLA Health physicians of Asian descent — Albert Chang, MD, PhD; Alan Lee, MD; and Puja Venkat, MD — are striving to make their mark on the present. Led by Dr. Chang, associate professor, vice chair of surgical services and brachytherapy service chief for the Department of Radiation Oncology, and Institute of Urologic Oncology Member, this highly skilled team performs a specialized procedure called high-dose rate (HDR) brachytherapy.
The procedure involves inserting radioactive material inside the body, rather than the traditional method of projecting it from a machine outside the body, which allows doctors to deliver higher doses of radiation to specific areas. This type of image-guided, targeted radiation is highly effective in treating cancers of the prostate, head and neck, breast, cervix and eye. In addition, the UCLA brachytherapy team is the only center in the United States to perform the highly effective and safe brachytherapy procedures for cancers in the lung, mediastinum, liver and abdomen. Dr. Chang has performed more than 2,000 brachytherapy procedures. Dr. Chang’s team plans to publish a paper aimed at non-Caucasian patients explaining brachytherapy and its benefits. The goal is to promote better dialogue with all patients, Dr. Venkat says. “Having patient access to our care is very important and so is being able to get out into the community to make sure people are aware of our services,” Dr. Chang says. “I think it takes educating not just our students and our trainees, but our public as well. Connect.uclahealth.org >
May 19, 2021
Amar U. Kishan, MD -
Continued coverage of a UCLA study published in European Urology Oncology finding a new technique using prostate-specific membrane antigen PET imagining (PSMA PET) that can benefit some prostate cancer patients. Research was led by Amar Kishan, MD, chief of genitourinary oncology and vice chair of clinical and translational research in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. Targeted Oncology Roundtable discussion: Yu explores the role of hereditary germline testing in nonmetastatic CRPC
May 19, 2021
Amar U. Kishan, MD - Dr. Kishan and a team of his UCLA Health colleagues, led a large, multi-institutional and multi-national effort to better characterize the clinical outcomes of men who have a recurrence after initial radiation for high-risk prostate cancer. "The results indicate that the disease course can be aggressive in some men, with the implication that in some men, the disease might have spread even at the time of diagnosis, but was simply not detected. Revolutions in modern technology, such as PSMA-PET/CT scanning, which UCLA has been a pioneer in, can help identify these patients upfront and may help tailor treatment choices." said Dr. Kishan, chief of genitourinary oncology and vice chair of clinical and translational research in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. Read more >. See full text >
May 13, 2021
JCCC Inaugural Virtual Retreat – On Thursday, May 13, 2021, the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center (JCCC) hosted an all-day event bringing together the broader cancer research community from across UCLA, including faculty researchers, physicians, physician-scientists, students, post-docs and allied professional. The retreat was an opportunity for a wide array of individuals working to accelerate discoveries that prevent and cure cancer to chare progress and accomplishments, discuss challenges and future directions, learn about resources available at the Cancer Center, and develop and strengthen collaborations. Dr. Michael Teitell, Director of the Cancer Center, opened and closed the Retreat, with 2 other Institute of Urologic Oncology Board Members (Dr. Arie Belldegrun and Dr. Dennis Slamon) and 2 additional Institute Members (Dr. Paul Boutros and Dr. Robert Reiter) presenting and/or moderating panels
May 13, 2021
Steven Raman, MD - Thermal ablation presents safe and effective alternative for local control of metastatic gynecologic tumors. Cancer Network reported on a new UCLA study that found percutaneous image guided needle-based thermal ablation is safe and effective for gynecologic cancers in the lungs, liver and other soft tissues. Research was led by Dr. Raman, UCLA professor of radiology, urology and surgery and a Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.
May 11, 2021
UCLA Health Innovation Spring 2021 Awards – At UCLA, health innovation isn’t an afterthought or an add-on. It’s part of UCLA’s history — and a key piece of the present and future. On May 11, 2021, UCLA Health announced the winners of their most recent UCLA Health Innovation Health Equity and MedTech Challenges. Each story reinforces the fact that a single idea combined with multidisciplinary collaboration and the proper resources and partnerships can improve patients’ lives and even revolutionize health care. Paul C. Boutros, PhD, Director of Cancer Data Science for the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, Associate Director of Cancer Informatics at the Institute for Precision Health, Professor of Human Genetics and Urology, as well as an integral member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research at UCLA was an awardee for his project “Targeted Sequencing Panel to Identify Genetic Risk for Prostate Cancer.”
May 11, 2021
Dennis Slamon, MD, PhD – Dr. Slamon, Board Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and director of Clinical/Translational Research and the Revlon/UCLA Women’s Cancer Program at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center recently announced, “We’re in the clinic!!!!” to UCLA Health leaders – heralding what he called a “very important, exciting and critical translational ‘lab-to-clinic’ milestone.” The first two patients have been enrolled and dosed in a Phase 1 clinical trial of a unique, experimental cancer therapy that was developed through 1200 Pharma LLC, a partnership between UCLA and Caltech. The drug is the product of collaborations among Dr. Slamon and others at UCLA Health, UCLA Technology Development Group (TDG), David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, and UCLA Clinical and Translational Science Institute (CTSI). Stay tuned for further details.
May 08, 2021
Steven Raman, MD - UCLA Radiology researchers, including Steven Raman, MD, UCLA professor of radiology, urology and surgery and a Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, have developed a new artificial intelligence application — FocalNet — that detects prostate cancer lesions and predicts their aggressiveness on multi-parametric magnetic resonance imaging (mp-MRI) scans. With comparisons to the prospective performance of radiologists using the current diagnostic guideline, FocalNet demonstrated nearly the same level of accuracy as radiologists with 10 years of clinical prostate MRI reading experience. FocalNet: Artificial Intelligence Identifies Prostate Cancer
April 28, 2021
Congratulations on a cross-disciplinary effort of IUO Members Drs. Corey W. Arnold, Ely Felker, Leonard S. Marks, Steven Raman, Robert E. Reiter, Anthony E. Sisk on their manuscript “Optimizing Spatial Biopsy Sampling for the Detection of Prostate Cancer” being featured in The Journal of Urology. Read more.
April 23, 2021
Brian Shuch, MD – Don’t ignore these symptoms of kidney cancer. Kidney cancer is one of the 10 most common cancers for men and women – more than 75,000 people are diagnosed each year. Most kidney cancer is detected at an early stage before symptoms start. But 20 to 30 percent of the time, it presents with symptoms and is diagnosed at a more advanced stage. The majority of kidney tumors are discovered accidentally, according to Brian Shuch, MD, director of the Kidney Cancer Program at the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology. “People go for imaging for some other cause and are found to have a kidney tumor,” he says. “But we also see later-stage diagnoses that present symptomatically.” UCLA Health Connect for more information >
April 16, 2021
Mark S. Litwin, MD, MPH -- Testicular cancer survivor and pro baseball player strives to raise awareness about condition. During a routine physical while training with the Dodgers, Connor Joe discovered he had testicular cancer. Little did he know his treatment journey at UCLA Health would lead him to a new friendship with his surgeon Dr. Mark Litwin, Chair of Urology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and Director of the Testicular Cancer Program at the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology. In this UCLA Health blog and video, learn more about Connor, who has fully recovered and is back on the field with the Colorado Rockies, and how he hopes to use his platform to raise awareness about testicular cancer among young men. UCLA Health Connect >
April 16, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD and Sandy T. Liu, MD -- Transfer to UCLA Health changed the life of this man with prostate cancer. John Babcock’s primary care doctor suggested he sign up for the “SCIMITAR” study at UCLA Heath, which advances treatment options for prostate cancer with the use of short-course radiotherapy. As part of the program, he received five high-dose radiation treatments over a two-week period, with each treatment taking less than an hour. His PSA level now? It’s nearly undetectable. “It goes to show what smart doctors can do” says Mr. Babcock.
April 15, 2021
Dr. Dennis Slamon -- Exploiting cancer biology in developing new treatment paradigms. ASCO Post interviewed Dennis Slamon, MD, PhD, Chief of Hematology/Oncology, Director of Clinical and Translational Research at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, and Institute of Urologic Oncology Board Member, on the ways in which breast cancer research pioneered the targeted treatment approach as the understanding of the basic biology of tumors deepened and new pathways were uncovered.
April 9, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD -- Amar U. Kishan, MD, and a team of his UCLA Health colleagues, are conducting clinical trials on a more effective and less burdensome treatment that uses genetics and advanced technology to determine if a patient can be cured with large doses of radiation given in short sequences, even for patients with recurrences after surgery. “We've learned that prostate cancer responds very well to a higher daily dose radiation delivered precisely and with expertise,” said Dr. Kishan, chief of genitourinary oncology and vice chair of clinical and translational research in the Department of Radiation Oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, the Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. UCLA Health Connect Blog >
April 1, 2021
PhD candidate Jiayun Li, along with Institute Members Drs. Corey Arnold (mentor), Anthony Sisk, and Huihui Ye, recently published an article in Computers in Biology and Medicine, describing an artificial intelligence (AI) technique for diagnosing and grading prostate cancer, titled “A multi-resolution model for histopathology image classification and localization with multiple instance learning.” The Computational Diagnostics lab, led by Dr. Arnold, has developed an AI system that automatically detects prostate cancer and can distinguish between Grade group ≥2 and Grade group 1 tumors. The algorithm analyzes tissue at multiple magnifications and does not require any microscopic-level annotations from a pathologist to train. The model obtained an average precision of 99.8% for cancer detection on an external dataset. This high-throughput analysis technology has the potential to add clinical benefit by enhancing diagnostic capabilities as well as easing the overall workload burden in busy reference centers by screening slides to detect potentially missed small foci of cancer, standardize grading accuracy, and ensure diagnosis of high risk malignancies. Read the full article here.
April 1, 2021
Institute of Urologic Oncology Board Members - Interim Chair of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine Dr. Sarah Dry, Vice Chair of the Department of Molecular & Medical Pharmacology and Chief of the Ahmanson Translational Imaging Dr. Johannes Czernin, Chief of Hematology/Oncology Dr. Dennis Slamon, Chair of Radiation Oncology Dr. Michael Steinberg, and Chair of Urology Dr. Mark Litwin - led an Institute cohort of Members named to Los Angeles Magazine’s 2021 list of “Top Doctors” in Los Angeles. The results are obtained via a Los Angeles Magazine survey which asked physicians in Los Angeles County to identify doctors they considered to be at the top of their fields. Respected by their colleagues throughout Los Angeles and around the world, our physicians are trusted by patients and the community for their expert and compassionate care. Other Members named were Dr. Albert Chang, Dr. Alexandra Drakaki, Dr. Amar Kishan, Dr. Chris Saigal, Dr. Karim Chamie, Dr. Leonard Marks, and Dr. Robert Reiter. View the Los Angeles Magazine’s “Top Doctors” list >
April 1, 2021
Paul Boutros, PhD -- Targeted Oncology interviewed Paul Boutros, PhD, professor of human genetics and urology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, director of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center’s Cancer Data Science program, associate director of cancer informatics at the UCLA Institute for Precision Health, and member of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology, on prostate cancer genetic testing in academic and community settings.
April 1, 2021
Steven Raman, MD -- ScienMag highlighted a new UCLA study that found percutaneous image guided needle based thermal ablation is safe and effective for gynecologic cancers in the lungs liver, and other soft tissues. Research was led by Steven Raman, MD, professor of radiology and a member of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology. Medical Xpress and EurekAlert! syndicated the ScienMag story.
March 18, 2021
Johannes Czernin, MD and Jeremie Calais, MD, MSc - Lisette Hilton of the Urology Times shared that this “could be a big year for FDA approvals of prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA)-targeted theranostics aimed at diagnosing and treating advanced prostate cancer. Theranostics is the combination of therapeutic and diagnostic agents, targeting the same molecular target. PSMA is a leading target for prostate cancer diagnosis and treatment…PSMA targeting could have major implications for patients and providers, including urologists who treat patients with advanced prostate cancer.” Jeremie Calais, MD, MSc, Assistant Professor of nuclear medicine and theranostics, Member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and Director of the Theranostics Clinical Research Program at UCLA and colleagues are doing studies comparing PSMA PET with conventional imaging scans for staging prostate cancer. UCSF and UCLA are the only two medical centers in the U.S. that can offer PSMA PET to the public through this FDA approval. A limited number of other U.S. medical centers are currently using PSMA as an investigational technique, generally as part of a clinical trial. However, more hospitals will have the opportunity to adopt the technology after applying for expedited FDA approval, which is now possible as a result of the initial FDA approval gained by UCLA and UCSF. This UCLA effort was led by Dr. Calais and Johannes Czernin, chief of the Ahmanson Translational Theranostics Division at UCLA.
March 4, 2021
Jeremie Calais, MD, MSc -- The game changer: new test helps doctors find hidden prostate cancer. KPIX-TV reported on the FDA’s approval of a new imaging technique for prostate cancer that locates lesions in the pelvic area and other parts of the body to which the tumors have migrated. The prostate-specific membrane antigen PET imaging, or PSMA PET, was a collaboration between UCLA and UCSF. Jeremie Calais, MD, assistant professor of molecular and medical pharmacology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and member of the Institute of Urologic Oncology and UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, was mentioned.
February 26, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD -- Shorter, stronger radiation course effective for high-risk prostate cancer. Healio highlighted a new UCLA study published in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics finding that shortening the length of radiation treatment to five days in larger doses is safer and more effective for men with prostate cancer. Research was led by Amar Kishan, MD, assistant professor of radiation oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, vice-chair of clinical and translation research, and chief of the Genitourinary Oncology Service at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.
February 18, 2021
Michael A. Teitell, MD, PhD – Director of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center announced the UCLA Health launch of a new cancer care option for patients in the United States. Now people who are diagnosed with cancer can receive a second opinion from UCLA Health’s physicians on their course of treatment. Cancer second opinions are offered by written correspondence and by video conferencing to those who reside in California. Patients who live in other states can also receive their second opinion by written correspondence and by video conferencing, although regulations may affect this in the future. The goals for cancer second opinion include providing people with access to UCLA’s leading-edge care no matter where they live across the country, and to continue to build UCLA Health Jonsson Comprehensive Caner Center’s reputation as a leader in groundbreaking cancer research. People looking for cancer care can learn about the benefits of this program and find the answers to their questions at the new webpage >
February 16, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD -- ScienMag, UroToday and Medical Xpress highlighted a new UCLA study that helps identify which patients with prostate cancer will benefit most from the use of prostate-specific membrane antigen PET imaging, or PSMA PET. Research was led by Amar Kishan, MD, assistant professor of radiation oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, vice-chair of clinical and translation research, and chief of the Genitourinary Oncology Service at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and Member of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. UCLA Health News >
Feb 12, 2021
Vidit Sharma, MD -- MDedge highlighted a UCLA study presented at the 2021 ASCO Genitourinary Cancers Symposium finding a correlation between reduced levels of screening for prostate cancer and an increase in diagnosis of metastatic disease. Research was led by Vidit Sharma, MD, health services fellow in urologic oncology at UCLA Health and the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. Medscape, Healio and MDalert syndicated the MDedge story.
Feb 11, 2021
Dr. Dennis Slamon -- OncLive profiled Dennis Slamon, MD, PhD, chief of hematology/oncology and the director of clinical and translational research at the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, on his career in oncology.
February 2, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD -- Advances in radiation technology help physicians deliver more precise and effective cancer treatment A new advance in radiation-therapy equipment is giving physicians the ability to better visualize tumors and internal anatomy, allowing more accurate delivery of necessary treatments. “This makes a critical difference,” says Amar Kishan, MD, assistant professor of radiation oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, vice-chair of clinical and translation research, and chief of the Genitourinary Oncology Service at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and Member of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center.. “MRIs have a much better spatial resolution than a CT scan,” which has been the traditional method to locate and map out areas that need to be treated but has limitations because it does not always provide the clearest picture of internal anatomy, particularly in the abdomen and pelvis. The MRIdian is available only at a limited number of major medical centers, including UCLA, which began using it in December 2019 at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center. The technology can be employed to treat any type of soft tissue cancer and tumor, and it is being used by UCLA Health Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center in multiple clinical trials for pancreatic cancer, sarcomas and prostate cancer. UCLA Health Connect >
January 28, 2021
Drs. Kishan, Calais & Nickols -- The manuscript Use and Impact of Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography Prior to Salvage Radiation Therapy in Men with Biochemical Recurrence After Radical Prostatectomy: A Scoping Review has been accepted for publication in the European Urology Oncology (EUO). An International consensus panel of urologists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, and nuclear medicine physicians describe the impact of advanced nuclear imaging scans like PSMA PET on radiation therapy for prostate cancer that has recurred after surgery. Senior author and UCLA radiation oncologist Dr. Amar Kishan was joined by fellow Institute of Urologic Oncology Members Dr. Jeremie Calais(Assistant Professor at the Ahmanson Translational Imaging Division of the Department of Molecular and Medical Pharmacology) and Dr. Nick Nickols (Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology).
January 28, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD and multiple IUO members -- The manuscript Identifying the Best Candidates for Prostate-specific Membrane Antigen Positron Emission Tomography/Computed Tomography (PSMA PET/CT) as the Primary Staging Approach Among Men with High-risk Prostate Cancer and Negative Conventional Imaging has been accepted for publication in European Urology Oncology. With senior author UCLA radiation oncologist and Institute of Urologic Oncology Member Dr. Amar Kishan, this paper highlighted work from multiple authors across the Institute’s spectrum from medical oncology, nuclear medicine, radiation oncology, and urology. The authors looked at two of UCLA's phase II trials using the novel scan, PSMA, to identify patients who had more disease than anticipated. They identified variables that could predict for this, and developed models that can be used in the clinic.
January 28, 2021
Amar Kishan, MD -- ASCO Post and MedicalXpress highlighted a new UCLA study published in the International Journal of Radiation Oncology*Biology*Physics finding shortening the length of radiation treatment to five days in larger doses is safer and more effective for men with prostate cancer. Research was led by Amar Kishan, MD, assistant professor of radiation oncology at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, vice-chair of clinical and translation research, and chief of the Genitourinary Oncology Service at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA and Member of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology and the Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center. Labroots and Press From syndicated the ASCO Post story. UCLA JCCC >
January 28, 2021
Dr. Robert Reiter -- Renal & Urology News and Healio highlighted a new UCLA study published in the Journal of Urology that finds MRI frequently underestimates tumor size in prostate cancer. Research was led by Robert Reiter, MD, co-director, Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center Genitourinary Oncology Program, professor of urology and Institute of Urologic Oncology Member at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA.
January 14, 2021
Owen Witte, PhD -- Bioengineer.org, Science Daily and Medical Xpress covered a new UCLA study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that describes how a new method, called CLInt-Seq, improves existing techniques to collect and genetically sequence rare T cells. Research was led by Owen Witte, MD, founding director of the UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center, presidential chair in developmental immunology, and professor of microbiology, immunology and molecular genetics at UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center and Institute of Urologic Oncology Member. The Witte lab is utilizing this technology to address a number of scientific questions and developing T-cell therapies for prostate cancer. This research was funded by the National Cancer Institute, the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy, a UCLA Tumor Immunology Training Grant and the UCLA Broad Stem Cell Research Center, including support from the Hal Gaba Director's Fund for Cancer Stem Cell Research. UCLA JCCC >
January 14, 2021
Dr. Robert Reiter -- ScienMag highlighted a new UCLA study led by Robert Reiter, MD, professor of urology and co-director of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center Genitourinary Oncology Program, that found MRI frequently underestimates tumor size in prostate cancer. ScienceDaily, Newswise, EurekAlert! and MedicalXpress syndicated the ScienMag story. Dr. Reiter also commented in Urology Times and Imaging Technology News stories on the same topic. UCLA Newsroom >
January 10, 2021
Drs. Kishan, Nickols & Steinberg -- The International Journal of Radiation Oncology, Biology, Physics has accepted for publication a manuscript exploring the efficacy and toxicity of stereotactic body radiotherapy (SBRT) in high risk prostate cancer (HRPCa) in a consortium of seven institutional phase II trials and prospective registries. A team of UCLA radiation oncologists and Institute of Urologic Oncology Members Drs. Kishan, Nickols and Steinberg looked at data for using a 5-day course of SBRT for patients with high-risk prostate cancer, pooling data from 7 trials across the globe (including UCLA's phase II trial). 344 patients were treated and followed for long enough to do analysis. 4 year cure rates were 82%, and 89% were free from metastasis at 4 years. Severe urinary or bowel side effects were rare (2.3% and 0.9%, respectively). This the largest dataset to date in support of this treatment in patients with more aggressive prostate cancers is an evolution of our work in less aggressive prostate cancers. This study if being followed-up on with the actively recruiting MIRAGE trial which includes patients with high-risk disease. For those interested in referring or enrolling. See UCLA Newsroom Research Brief.
January 7, 2021
Paul C. Boutros, PhD, Robert Reiter, MD, and Huihui Ye, MD, of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center have received the 2020 Prostate Cancer Foundation Special Challenge Award to help improve the understanding of prostate cancer biology and identify new ways to help prevent, diagnose, prognose and treat lethal prostate cancer. This cross-disciplinary team of investigators were awarded $500,000 to study the influence the germline variation has on the way genes turned on in prostate cancer are processed. Prostate cancer is one of the most heritable forms of cancer and a number of heritable “germline” genomic alterations that increase risk for prostate cancer have been identified. However, how germline genome features influence prostate cancer initiation and progression remain unclear. Boutros and the team will be determining whether germline features influence the circular RNA landscape of localized prostate cancer, which they were the first to discover in 2018. Circular RNAs are a unique type of RNA that form covalent circular structures and have many different cellular functions in normal processes as well as in diseases such as cancer. The researchers will also be looking to see if the circular RNA landscape of localized prostate cancer differs between patients of different ancestries. “This collaboration is the first to study how the germline genome influences the circular RNA landscape of prostate cancer,” said Boutros, director of cancer data science for the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer. “If successful, it will help lay down the groundwork for the development of new risk prediction tools, prognostic biomarkers and personalized treatments for men with prostate cancer.” All three researchers are members of the UCLA Institute of Urologic Oncology. UCLA Newsroom >