New option for management of high-risk soft tissue sarcoma of the limb

NEW OPTION FOR MANAGEMENT OF HIGH-RISK SOFT TISSUE SARCOMA OF THE LIMB International, multi-centre sarcoma trial shows benefits of integrating immunotherapy with radiotherapy and surgery

The Australia and New Zealand Sarcoma Association (ANZSA) is the peak body for the sarcoma community. ANZSA aims to improve outcomes for sarcoma patients through research, education and awareness of sarcomas and related tumours.

ANZSA fosters effective collaborations across multi-disciplinary teams (MDT), which comprise of specialist health professionals (including pathologists, radiologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists and paediatric oncologists) working together to discuss sarcoma and related tumours cases, and how to best manage treatment and care.

Professor Angela Hong MBBS, MMed, PhD, FRANZCR is the co-Chair of ANZSA’s Scientific Advisory Committee and a Professor at Sydney Medical School of the University of Sydney. She is a radiation oncologist and has been a member of the Multidisciplinary Bone and Soft Tissue Tumour Clinic at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital/Chris O’Brien Lifehouse for the past 15 years.

As a clinician scientist, her research focuses on developing innovative radiation therapy technique and combination treatments to improve the outcome for patients with sarcoma.

Professor Hong spoke to Australian Health Journal about sarcoma and a recently concluded international, multicentre trial, that could lead to a new potential option for patients grappling with high-risk sarcoma of the limb.

Soft tissue sarcoma, a rare aggressive cancer originating in connective tissues, can affect both children and adults. It is particularly challenging to conduct clinical trials due to its rarity, However a recently concluded international collaborative Phase II clinical trial SARC032 has shown groundbreaking findings into the advantages of Immunotherapy for patients with high-risk soft tissue sarcoma of the limb

The trial was led by the Sarcoma Alliance Research Collaboration (SARC) in the United States and the Australia and New Zealand Sarcoma Association (ANZSA) in Australia. The Australian participating sites in the trial were Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Chris O’Brien Lifehouse and Princess Alexandra Hospital.

SARC032 is the first completed randomised clinical trial of its kind and has demonstrated compelling evidence to integrate immunotherapy, with the standard treatment regimen of radiotherapy and surgery for patients with grade 2 or 3, stage III soft tissue sarcoma of the limb.

Professor Angela Hong, Australia’s Principal Investigator for the trial, believes these results will be beneficial for patients for this specific stage of sarcoma.

 “This is a significant milestone. The integration of immunotherapy into standard treatment protocols heralds a new era in sarcoma management, offering patients and clinicians a potent tool in the battle against this formidable disease.”

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