From common cancers such as breast, lung and colorectal cancers, to rare ones such as biliary tract cancer, the progress in terms of available treatments has been truly significant in the last 12 months. And they will be explored in the ‘two days’ of Marcangolo, a conference conceived by Rossana Berardi, Full Professor at the Polytechnic University of the Marches and Director of the Oncological Clinic of the Marche University Hospital, and by Renato Bisonni, Director of the UOC of Medical Oncology- hospital of the Murri Hospital in Fermo, now in its 14th edition. The Marcangolo event takes stock at the end of the year of the innovations in the oncological field from an integrated point of view, not only in the medical-scientific field but also in the bio-psycho-social field, and with an attentive eye on research.
“Cancer is a complex disease and in 2022 giant strides were made in various sectors – says Berardi, national councilor of the Italian Association of Medical Oncology (AIOM) which, among others, sponsors the important event -. It has been a very important year for breast cancer, for which new drugs have become available for patients in the treatment of the disease, such as drug-conjugated antibodies such as trastuzumab deruxtecan and sacituzumab govitecan, and more and more scientific data has emerged solid and significant for other biomolecular drugs such as cycline kinase inhibitors and PARP enzyme inhibitors. The new therapeutic strategy of this pathology is becoming increasingly important and complex and allows us to offer the prospect of long life or recovery to our patients”.
Also in 2022, scientific innovations were presented in other important pathologies: for example, in the field of lung cancer in recent years there has been a real therapeutic revolution and now we are no longer talking about a single disease but about various types that require different treatments within a precision oncology setting. “The future of research, which is already a reality for our patients, goes even further: we are talking about mutational oncology, with agnostic drugs that target a mutation regardless of the site of the primary tumor”, explains Berardi who was recently quoted in the prestigious World‘s Top 2% Scientists ranking prepared by Stanford University, which includes scholars whose works are among the most popular in the world. “Finally, this year has been extremely rich in novelties also for rarer and more complex tumours, such as primary tumors of the liver and biliary tract, for which effective treatments did not exist until a few months ago”. “It was the year in which tumors of the gastrointestinal tract underwent an acceleration in the use of immunotherapy – continues Bisonni -, thanks to the fact that it was highlighted that if a drug alters the microsatellite values then it can use a special immunotherapy drug and this represented a great novelty that did not exist before today”.
A varied programme
Guests of the conference also Paolo Ascierto of the Pascale Institute of Naples with regard to melanoma, Domenica Lorusso of the Gemelli Polyclinic for gynecological neoplasms, Alberto Sobrero of the San Martino Polyclinic of Genoa for tumors of the gastrointestinal tract, Grazia Arpino of the Federico II University of Naples for those relating to the breast and Andrea Ardizzoni of the University of Bologna for those relating to the lungs. In addition, there will be a session dedicated to “simultaneous care”, i.e. all early palliative care capable of preventing and treating the suffering of the patient and his family through the timely identification of the physical, psychological and spiritual problems that accompany this pathology. as well as the intervention of Don Vinicio Albanesi, who will argue on the theme “Beyond the therapeutic persistence”.
“Marcangolo has reached its 14th year of life and has grown so much as to become the most important oncology congress in the Marche region – underlines Bisonni -. This year we have returned to our origins by organizing a two-day event instead of a single appointment because there are many issues to be addressed, as well as the figures from the medical field who will intervene. The first day is purely aimed at health professionals with an update on new pharmacological therapies and innovative therapies in the oncological field that concern all sectors, while Saturday is aimed at a multidisciplinary meeting also open to citizens and voluntary associations of the Marcango in which issues of multidisciplinary and transversal interest will be addressed, such as nutrition, but also the taking charge of patients in a global vision taking into account simultaneous support and support therapies “.
The importance of nutrition
Year after year, the congress is enriched with new contents and on this occasion, also thanks to the contribution of Edy Virgili, nutritionist biologist, specialized in Food Science, the topics of nutrition and integration in oncology will be treated. “The lack of attention to the nutritional status of the cancer patient, widely documented in the world scientific literature, has serious consequences on the quality and length of life of the patients, on the course of the disease and on the response and tolerance to the proposed therapeutic treatments, resulting in a worse prognosis and high healthcare costs – Dr. Virgili reported -. Oncological patients should always have a nutritional assessment and an adequate diet, at any stage of the disease, and this path should be an integral and essential part of the diagnostic-therapeutic-assistance path, which constitutes the set of oncological treatments, and be personalized and dynamic, considering the evolution and needs of the patient, who, on the other hand, frequently turns for food advice to non-competent characters, often promoted on social media”.