NYC. Photo by DAVID ILIFF.
Sept 11 monument in NYC. Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

On December 18, 2015 President Obama signed into law the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act of 2010, a bill re-authorizing the September 11th Victim Compensation Fund (“VCF”) for an additional five years.

This will benefit individuals impacted by the events of 9/11 including  men who developed prostate cancer as a result of exposure to the disaster.

Importantly, the re-authorization extends the  deadline for submitting claims. Previously the VCF said it would stop receiving claims on October 3, 2016. This is no longer the case. As of September 2, the deadline has been extended by four years.

The new deadline for filing a claim (and all supporting documents) is December 18, 2020.

Cancers including prostate cancer as a possible result of exposure to 9/11 disaster toxins began to emerge and gained medical attention in 2007-08, years later than rapid onset after-effects of exposure such as  traumatic injury, respiratory diseases, clinical depression, and PTSD.

For men diagnosed with prostate cancer on or after the Registration Start Date of October 22, 2013, the new Registration Deadline for compensation is  two years after Registration Start Date, but no later than December 18, 2020.

Registration start and deadline dates vary according to health condition.  Rules for the array of covered health conditions are complex. Victim's Compensation Fund advises to consider consulting a lawyer qualified and reputable in this field.

...continue reading "9/11 Health Fund Extends Deadline for Prostate Cancer Claims"

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Prostate cancer survivors during the era 2005-2013, as you'll see from our tag cloud (sidebar), were bombarded by Dendreon's controversial campaign to speed FDA approval of its immunotherapy vaccine Provenge. Since then, Provenge hype has calmed down, while the push for Abiraterone acetate (Zytiga) has heated up.

Abiraterone (generic name) aka  Zytiga (brand name) is a high-powered castration drug FDA approved for use with 10-mg prednisone as a treatment for men with metastatic CRPC. Compared to Provenge, which costs around $90,000 for a course of treatment, Zyiga costs about $5,000 a month with expected follow-up doses for around eight months.

Janssen, Zytiga's manufacturer, is pushing to extend the drug for men with high-risk nonmetastatic (M0) castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC). According to a study by Dr. David Crawford and colleagues,, abiraterone (Xytiga) "significantly lowered PSA levels with a consistent toxicity profile in men with high-risk nonmetastatic (M0) castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC)."
...continue reading "Zytiga Lowers PSA in men with high-risk prostate cancer, at a cost in side-effects"

SEATTLE, April 29, 2010 --Dendreon Corporation (Nasdaq: DNDN) today announced that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved PROVENGE(®) (sipuleucel-T), an autologous cellular immunotherapy for the treatment of asymptomatic or minimally symptomatic metastatic, castrate-resistant (hormone-refractory) prostate cancer (CRPC). Provenge is designed to induce an immune response against Prostatic Acid Phosphatase (PAP), an antigen expressed in most prostate cancers, and is the first in a new therapeutic class known as autologous cellular immunotherapies.
...continue reading "FDA Approves PROVENGE ® for the Treatment of Men with Advanced Prostate Cancer"

The U.S. government’s cancer research network is in severe disarray according to a report by the Institute of Medicine. Waste and inefficiency cause 40% of all late-stage government funded cancer trials to be abandoned before completion, the report found. Shannon Pettypiece at Bloomberg.com and Liz Jones at FierceBiotech say the report paints a doomladen picture.

"The system used to conduct cancer clinical trials in the U.S. is 'approaching a state of crisis,' with waste and inefficiency creating difficulties for those wanting to undertake these studies," Jones writes. ...continue reading "U.S. cancer trials near state of crisis, report"

In light of favorable results from the Phase 1-2 trial of MDV 3100 for advanced prostate cancer, a Phase 3 trial is enrolling at sites in the US, Canada, South America, UK, Europe, Australia, and South Africa. Results from the earlier trial are published online by the UK medical journal The Lancet. ...continue reading "Phase 3 Trial Underway for MDV 3100 for Advanced Prostate Cancer"

Regina Holliday prepares her supplies for a day of painting. Photo by Maggie Starbard, NPR.
Regina Holliday prepares her supplies for a day of painting. Photo by Maggie Starbard, NPR.

Regina Holliday has painted a mural on the side of a gas station in Washington DC to tell the story of a day in her husband Fred's struggle with broken healthcare. At ge 39, Fred was diagnosed with stage IV kidney cancer.

...continue reading "A Mural for a Cancer Patient Tells a Story of Broken Healthcare"

The Obama administration has changed Federal policies on regulation of medical marijuana use under state law. During his presidential race last year, Barack Obama said that he intended to halt raids of medical marijuana facilities operating legally under state laws. Today, new Justice Department guidelines brought this change about.

The new guidelines order federal drug agents to stop arresting or charging patients, caregivers or suppliers who are dispensing, buying or using marijuana for medical purposes allowed by state law. ...continue reading "Obama Orders Medical Marijuana Use Allowed Where State Law Makes it Legal"