ASCO’s annual progress against cancer report co-edited by City of Hope physician

January 31, 2019 | by Michael Easterling

Sumanta Pal 256x256 Sumanta K. Pal, M.D.
Clinical Cancer Advances 2019: ASCO’s annual report on progress against cancer is a survey of the most significant clinical research breakthroughs of the previous year. The report is developed by renowned experts in various oncology subspecialties, as well as cancer prevention, quality of care, health disparities and tumor biology.
Sumanta K. Pal, M.D., associate clinical professor in the Department of Medical Oncology & Therapeutics Research at City of Hope, was selected this year to serve as one of three executive editors of Clinical Cancer Advances, an annual report on the progress against cancer distributed by the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). Pal is first author on the associated publication, now available in the current issue of ASCO’s Journal of Clinical Oncology.
This year's report highlights several study areas where researchers at City of Hope have contributed substantial clinical expertise. CAR T cell therapy and novel forms of immune treatment are featured prominently in this year's report. City of Hope’s CAR T team, with leadership from Stephen Forman, M.D., the Francis & Kathleen McNamara Distinguished Chair in Hematology and Hematopoietic Cell Transplantation, and Christine Brown, Ph.D., the Heritage Provider Network Professor in Immunotherapy, has played a substantial role in the development of this technology. 
The report offers specific attention to progress in rare cancers (i.e., those cancers occurring in six or fewer individuals for every 100,000 people), which collectively constitute about 20 percent of all cancer cases. Diseases such as sarcoma (a muscle-based tumor) fall into this category. The sarcoma team at City of Hope, led by Warren Chow, M.D., clinical professor in the Department of Medical Oncology & Therapeutics Research, Judith Sato, M.D., director of the Musculoskeletal Tumor Program, and Dominic Femino, M.D., chief of the Division of Orthopaedic Surgery, has led numerous practice-changing trials.
“Research teams at City of Hope have changed the face of medicine with the advances they’ve made in CAR T technology and the discoveries that have been made through clinical trials,” Pal said. “Having a key role in selecting and curating this research as an executive editor is both an honor and privilege.”
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