The FDA reclassified sunlamp products and UV lamps intended for use in these products from low-risk to moderate-risk devices, which will subject them to greater regulation, such as the need to obtain FDA clearance before marketing them. In addition, sunlamp products must now carry a visible black-box warning that explicitly states that they should not be used on people under age 18.
Private insurers and Medicare should pay for proton beam therapy for ocular melanoma, certain brain tumors, and other relatively uncommon cancers for which the treatment has proven effective, according to a “model policy” issued by the American Society for Radiation Oncology and available at www.astro.org.
Asymptomatic, nonpregnant adults and adolescents at high risk of hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection should be screened for it, according to a recommendation from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force, which reviewed evidence of potential risks and benefits of screening (Ann Intern Med 2014;161:58–66). The recommendation is a reversal of the task force's 2004 position on HBV screening. About 15% to 25% of people with chronic HBV infection die of cirrhosis or hepatocellular carcinoma.
Myriad Genetics (Salt Lake City, UT) sued Pathway Genomics (San Diego, CA) for infringement of its patent claims on BRCA1 and BRCA2 genetic testing. The suit was spurred by Pathway's launch in June of a next-generation sequencing test called BRCATrue that assesses alterations in the two genes.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that cigarette smoking rates among high school students have dropped to the lowest levels since the National Youth Risk Behavior Survey began in 1991. According to the 2013 survey results, the teen smoking rate is down to 15.7% (see www.cdc.gov/mmwr/pdf/ss/ss6304.pdf).
The Times of India reported that the Indian Patent Office denied a patent for Celgene's anticancer drug Abraxane (nab-paclitaxel), claiming that it lacks “an inventive step.” Under Indian law, patents cannot be granted to new forms of known substances unless they show enhanced efficacy over the known substance.
For more news on cancer research, visit Cancer Discovery online at http://CDnews.aacrjournals.org.