Reimagining Melanoma Research During and After the Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic has touched all of our lives – from illnesses and unexpected deaths, to world economies and the careers impacted. Like everything else, melanoma research has also been impacted – from decreased enrollment in clinical trials, to research labs hampered by lock-downs and new protocols. At MRA, we contemplate how can melanoma research be reimagined to accelerate progress similar to what has been accomplished with COVID-19.
Exciting End of Year Melanoma Clinical Trial Results
The annual Society for the Immunotherapy for Cancer (SITC) meeting did not disappoint, despite its virtual format, when it came to new clinical advances for melanoma. Researchers presented data from several important clinical trials and highlighted several novel agents that may boost responses to checkpoint immunotherapy.
Mary Jo Rogers: Research Will Get Us There
By Cody Barnett, MPH, MRA Director of Communications & Patient Engagement | 8 December 2020 In Melanoma Stories
With red hair and fair skin, Mary Jo Rogers has always known she was at high risk for melanoma, so she saw her dermatologist regularly. Despite knowing the risk, her 2011 diagnosis of Stage 3C melanoma still came as a big surprise.
Gail: Stage 4 to NED (No Evidence of Disease) Through a Clinical Trial
By Cody Barnett, MPH, MRA Director of Communications & Patient Engagement | 10 November 2020 In Melanoma Stories
Gail was already on her way out the exam room door, following her annual physical, before she remembered to ask about a dry cough she’d had for about a week.
Amy Fights for Acral Melanoma to be Seen
By Cody Barnett, MPH, MRA Director of Communications & Patient Engagement | 28 October 2020 In Melanoma Stories
For patients diagnosed with acral melanoma today, Amy offers the following advice: “You aren’t alone. If you find a spot – any spot, really that looks different or concerns you – get it checked out. Advocate for a biopsy because doctors don’t always know what they are looking for when it comes to acral melanoma.”
Fueling a Revolution: Driving Research Forward
MRA is powering a revolution in melanoma research. A revolution that is not only benefiting patients with melanoma but also impacting the field of oncology at large.
Take Life as it Comes
By Cody Barnett, MPH, MRA Director of Communications & Patient Engagement | 12 October 2020 In Melanoma Stories
At her local hospital, Karen was told she had both lung and brain cancer. She was in shock – she had been feeling great and was diligent about eating right and exercising. It wasn’t until she met MRA-funded investigator, Dr. Rizwan Haq at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute that she learned that her tumors were actually caused by malignant, stage 4 melanoma. Following radiosurgery and combination immunotherapy, Karen’s melanoma is stable.
Advancing Acral Melanoma Research
Patients with acral melanoma, a rare subtype of the disease that develops in the nailbeds, palms, or soles of the feet are particularly underserved by today’s treatments.So, improving outcomes for all advanced melanoma patients will, in part, depend on developing new treatments for acral and other rare subtypes of melanoma like uveal and mucosal melanoma. Those treatments, in turn, will depend on more research on these subtypes that deepens our understanding of what causes them or enables them to flourish.
Next-Generation Treatments for Melanomas
Improvements in survival over the last decade for patients diagnosed with advanced melanoma is largely due to the development of ground-breaking novel treatments, such as the first BRAF inhibitor and checkpoint immunotherapy. Building on the success of these new treatment approaches, researchers are hard at work developing meaningful improvements through next-generation treatments that could improve patient outcomes.
Elizabeth McGowan & Outpedaling 'The Big C'
By Cody Barnett, MPH, MRA Director of Communications & Patient Engagement | 18 September 2020 In Melanoma Stories
To celebrate her fifth anniversary of being NED, Elizabeth McGowan set out on a 4,250- mile adventure across the United States, coined 'Heals on Wheels.' Now, 20-years later, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author shares insight into her journey with melanoma and her solo bicycle trek in her book: "Outpedaling ‘The Big C’: My Healing Cycle Across America."