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Hi - I am new to this message board. I am a long term lung cancer survivor. Non Small Cell, bronchoalveolar cell adenocarcinoma, stage 1b, T2N0M0. In August 1997, at age 38 , I was diagnosed with 5cm mucinous cavitary lesion in the right lower lobe. Underwent lobectomy. In August 2001, at age 42 , I was diagnosed with recurrent disease, metachronous BAC - 5cm spiculated lesion in the left upper lobe. Underwent lobectomy. Post surgical recovery spiraled out of control and into Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) . Spent 38 days in ICU - 21 days in a drug induced coma and paralysis. Hundreds of doses of morphine, and other drugs, and several blood transfusions later, I walked out of the ICU to the applause of the staff. Spent months in physical therapy learning how to breathe, talk, walk, eat, and write again. As fate would have it, I was diagnosed in August 2003 with 1cm x 2cm spiculated lesion in the right middle lobe. Entered watchful waiting period until repeat CT and PET scans in November. If positive for tumor, will undergo wedge resection - primarily because of poor pulmonary performance as result of prior lobectomies. I am thankful to be alive but I am no longer acknowledging and/or celebrating the month of August. I have earned that privilege and it is my prerogative. LOL. :D

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Wow! I just read your story. If you are now only 46 your 5 kids are still young! They need you so you had better lick this. I was diagnosed that year - 97' also but it was December just before Christmas. So you have me beat . I believe BAC does not respond to most Chemos but if it were back I wonder if they could do RFA? Waiting for the repeat Scan is the pitts!! Welcome to our family we have others with even little ones here. We all try to help and inform each other. Again , welcome and I pray you find the support you need with us. Donna G

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Welcome - I live just up the road in Urbana, MD


June 9, 2003


(CHICAGO) — A new study suggests the combination of two new “smart drugs” may be effective in treating bronchioalveolar carcinoma (BAC), a type of non-small cell lung cancer generally considered resistant to chemotherapy. Researchers from UC Davis Cancer Center reported the finding last week at the American Society for Clinical Oncology annual meeting.

“This is an important breakthrough,” said Paul Gumerlock, associate professor of hematology & oncology at UC Davis Cancer Center and an author of the study. “It suggests a combination of drugs that block EGFR expression with drugs that block HER2 expression may have potent activity against a previously untreatable form of lung cancer.”

Iressa and Tarceva are examples of EGFR blockers; Herceptin was the first HER2 blocker to reach the market. All three drugs are examples of a new generation of so-called “smart” chemotherapy agents that specifically target cancer cells.

About 3 percent of all lung cancer patients have pure BAC tumors, and about 20 percent of all non-small cell lung cancers possess some BAC features. Unlike most lung cancers, BAC occurs more frequently in women than in men, and more frequently in nonsmokers than in smokers. It appears to be increasing in incidence. Patients with BAC generally live longer than those with more common non-small cell lung cancers, but BAC tumors are usually too diffuse for surgery and unresponsive to existing chemotherapeutic agents.

Preliminary research from other centers and anecdotal reports from around the country have suggested a role for the EGFR blockers Iressa and Tarceva in BAC. The UC Davis study provides new evidence that combining an EGFR blocker with a HER2 blocker may be more effective than an EGFR blocker alone.

In the study, UC Davis investigators examined tissue specimens collected from BAC patients enrolled in a previous clinical trial of the drug paclitaxel. The specimen bank represents one of the largest collections of BAC tissue in the country. Wilbur Franklin, professor of pathology at the University of Colorado in Denver, participated in the study.

The investigators found that although EGFR and HER2 expression varied among the tumors, BAC proliferation correlated with HER2 but not EGFR expression.

“This suggests that perhaps it’s the combination of EGFR and HER2 that may explain the unusual biology of BAC,” Gumerlock said.

Scientists at UC Davis Cancer Center, who participated in the design of the first clinical trial of Iressa in BAC patients, now hope to launch a clinical trial of HER2- and EGFR-blocker combination therapy in the treatment of BAC.

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