This morning we had the chance to do a posterwalk: we selected four or five abstracts that were presented by our younger participants in the meeting and we’ve had some very interesting presentations. I will highlight one or two posters perhaps, the first one that I’d like to highlight leads to the participation of older patients in phase I clinical trials. This is something that is extremely important to highlight because patients over 65, over 70, are quite often discriminated upon, not because doctors want to but because it happens. So what this work from the MD Anderson showed is that such patients can, in fact, derive as much benefit from participating in this kind of early phase studies as patients who are younger. This is probably relating to the fact that phase I trials nowadays relate to immunotherapies, targeted therapies, rather than cytotoxic combination chemotherapies. So these kinds of treatments are quite often much better tolerated.
The other abstract which I’d like to consider is one from the City of Hope group. They have initiated a prospective randomised comparison of intervention with the use of comprehensive geriatric assessment or no intervention, in other words standard of care, for patients with metastatic disease. It will be extremely important to try and show that geriatric assessment actually helps us decide whether patients can or cannot receive chemotherapy, hopefully guide us as to which regimens to use and, of course, this will clearly impact upon their quality of life and perhaps outcomes and survival.