SpringWorks Therapeutics – Desmoid Tumor Awareness

September is Desmoid Tumor Awareness Month, and given that nearly 30% to 40% of desmoid tumors are initially misdiagnosed, partly due to a lack of awareness, it is important to raise awareness among both patient and doctor communities to better support those who may be living with these devastating tumors. Dr. James (Jim) Cassidy, MD, PhD, Chief Medical Officer at SpringWorks Therapeutics discusses desmoid tumors, also called aggressive fibromatosis or desmoid-type fibromatosis, which are rare and often debilitating and disfiguring soft-tissue tumors with no FDA-approved treatment. He also talks about how SpringWorks is working to advance a potential new treatment option for people with desmoid tumors. 

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Happify Health – Ensemble – Prescription Digital Therapy

One in five people suffer from some form of depression or anxiety, which has been exacerbated by the pandemic. Barriers and limited access to care, coupled with a shortage of mental health physicians has helped spur tremendous growth (and record investments) in digital therapeutics, which is not only filling the gap, but increasingly proving to be a viable option. Chris Wasden, Head of Digital Therapeutics at Happify Health discusses ​these trends and the launch of ​Ensemble, a first-of-its kind prescription digital therapy solution that leverages a myriad of targeted AI, gamification and 100+ Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and mindfulness interventions that was brought to market under the FDA’s Covid Emergency Authorization.​ 

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Proscia – Digital and Computational Pathology

David West, co-founder and CEO of Proscia, discusses the rapid modernization of pathology, a practice that has only recently started to shift away from the microscope towards a data-driven standard of care. David offers a high-level background on the factors accelerating digital pathology adoption and speaks to the unprecedented potential of AI before exploring the impact of digitization on patient care. 

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Study Finds TREMFYA® Reduces Fatigue in PsA Patients

Moderate to severe fatigue affects nearly 50% of psoriatic arthritis (PsA) patients and greatly impacts their quality of life.    Dr. Alyssa Johnsen, MD, PhD, Vice President, Rheumatology Disease Area Lead, Janssen Research & Development discusses a new publication in “Arthritis Research & Therapy” that supports TREMFYA’s (guselkumab) ability to reduce fatigue in psoriatic arthritis (PsA) patients.   The two phase 3 clinical trials of 1,120 patients with active PsA found that guselkumab 100 mg every four weeks or every eight weeks led to clinical and sustained improvements in fatigue through one year.

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Boston Scientific – EXALT™ Model B Single-Use Bronchoscope

Dave Pierce, Executive VP and President, MedSurg and President, Endoscopy at Boston Scientific discusses the recent FDA clearance of its EXALT™ Model B Single-Use Bronchoscope, the latest device in the company’s single-use portfolio. Designed for use in bedside procedures within the intensive care unit (ICU) and operating room (OR), EXALT Model B provides an important option for the more than 1.2 million bedside procedures involving a bronchoscope performed in ICU and OR settings each year.  

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AstraZeneca – FDA Approval of Saphnelo™ (anifrolumab) For Lupus Erythematosus (SLE)

Dr. Richard Furie, Chief, Division of Rheumatology, Northwell Health, and principal investigator in​ the Saphnelo™ (anifrolumab) clinical trials for the treatment of moderate-to-severe systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) discusses what this approval means for the SLE community. This complex disease hasn’t seen a new treatment approved in over a decade. Saphnelo™ is also under regulatory review for SLE in the EU and Japan. The ​phase III trial in SLE using subcutaneous delivery has been initiated, and additional ​phase III trials are planned in lupus nephritis, cutaneous lupus erythematosus and myositis. 

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New Findings Reveal Lack of Protocol on How to Treat Hospitalized Gout Patients

Dr. Ada Kumar, Medical Director in Medical Affairs at Horizon Therapeutics discusses recent findings from “Rheumatology” (July 10, 2021) which showed an “urgent need” for high-quality, prospective studies of patients hospitalized for gout flares. She talks about how clinicians can use the time a patient is hospitalized – when they are more receptive – to educate them on gout and how to treat it, why it’s critical for a rheumatologist to be consulted in the hospital setting, and how Horizon is supporting the gout community through its ongoing and prospective studies. 

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Sharp Decrease in Plasma Donations Due to COVID Leaves Immunocompromised at Risk

The COVID-19 pandemic has dramatically decreased blood donations, especially those for plasma.  Thousands of patients rely on plasma-derived therapies to treat potentially deadly conditions like cancer, primary immunodeficiency disease, hemophilia, severe burns and more. One of these patients is John Boyle, who has lived with a rare primary immunodeficiency disease, X-linked agammaglobulinemia (XLA), since he was 6 months old. He must receive monthly plasma transfusions to survive – which means he has received more than 1,000 plasma donations in his lifetime.  He is here to discuss the dire need for donations, the donation process, his personal journey with plasma, and how plasma donations support these patient communities.   A list of donation centers can be found at donatingplasma.org.

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