Genetic Testing and Biomarkers in Cancer: A Community Oncology Approach

This activity is part of a series


Banu Arun, MD
Professor, Department of Breast Medical Oncology
Co-Medical Director, Clinical Cancer Genetics Program and Section Chief Breast Genetics, Prevention and Screening
University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
Houston, TX
Banu Arun, MD

Dr. Banu Arun is Professor in Department of Breast Medical Oncology, Co-Medical Director of the Clinical Cancer Genetics Program, and Section Chief Breast Genetics, Prevention and Screening at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. Her research focuses on identifying risk biomarkers for breast cancer and prevention and characterizing risk factors in a cohort of high-risk women with hereditary gene mutations (BRCA and others) as well as assessing breast cancer biology in these patients. Dr. Arun has served as the Principal Investigator on several clinical trials evaluating agents such as letrozole, imatinib, gemcitabine, R115777, and PARP inhibitors for metastatic breast cancer and celecoxib, atorvastatin, dasatinib, and Tamoxifen Gel in short-term breast cancer prevention trials. Her research also includes outreach and education, as well as cascade genetic testing of family members.

Given her national and international expertise, she has served on several committees, including The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Prevention committee ASCO Prevention Education Committee and currently serves as the Co-Chair for the Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) Prevention and Epidemiology Committee and member of the NCCN Breast Cancer Risk Reduction Guideline Committee as well as the NCCN Breast Hereditary Genetics Guideline Committee, member of the ASCO Germline Genetic Testing Guideline Panel, and member of the  National Cancer Institute (NCI) Cancer Prevention Steering Committee. She served as grant reviewer for Susan Komen and NCI P01 and reviewed for journals including the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Cancer, British Medical Journal, Cancer Prevention and Epidemiology, amongst others. She has more than 200 peer-reviewed publications and received research grants from the NCI, DoD, Susan Komen Foundation, and CPRIT.

She was featured in Forbes (December 2017) as one of the top 30 Breast Medical Oncologists in the United States. She has received FASCO award recognition in 2020 from the American Society of Clinical Oncology and is the recipient of the ASCO–American Cancer Society Award 2021.


Kurt A. Schalper, MD, PhD
Associate Professor of Pathology and Medicine (Medical Oncology)
Yale School of Medicine
Director, Translational Immuno-Oncology Laboratory
Yale Cancer Center
New Haven, CT
Kurt A. Schalper, MD, PhD

Kurt A. Schalper, MD, PhD, trained as a cell biologist and surgical pathologist, and served in clinical molecular diagnostics. He is the director of the Translational Immuno-Oncology Laboratory at the Yale Cancer Center, where he leads the standardized analysis of biomarkers in clinical trials using advanced cell/tissue analysis platforms.

Dr Schalper’s research is focused on understanding the immunobiology of human solid tumors and developing molecular biomarkers for prediction of response or resistance to therapies. In particular, his group has been actively evaluating the role of specific tumor antigens and immune evasion pathways used by human lung malignancies, including immune co-inhibitory/stimulatory ligands and receptors, tolerogenic enzymes, immune suppressive cells, antigen presenting/processing machinery, metabolic alterations in the tumor microenvironment, and oncogenic intracellular signaling. More recent and future scientific interests include the evaluation and clinical impact of tumor immune heterogeneity and editing.


Statement of Need

Within the field of oncology, the integration of targeted treatments based on biomarkers and genomic testing into the standard of care for multiple cancer types has resulted in improved patient outcomes. However, while this technology has been effectively implemented within comprehensive cancer centers and large academic institutions, community-based oncology settings are often unable to do so effectively. It is imperative that clinicians practicing in a community oncology setting are up to date on the latest information regarding genetic/biomarker testing and targeted treatments, in order to improve equity in outcomes for patients with cancer from all backgrounds.

In the first installment of this CME Outfitters Snack series, expert faculty will guide learners through an overview of challenges and recent developments in immunotherapy, as well as guideline recommendations on their implementation in practice. Faculty will also detail strategies designed to increase implementation of best practices in genetic and biomarker testing for cancer immunotherapy.

Learning Objective

Implement best practices in genetic and biomarker testing for cancer immunotherapy.

Financial Support

Supported by an educational grant from Merck Sharp & Dohme, LLC, a subsidiary of Merck & Co., Inc.

Target Audience

Physicians, physician associates (PAs), nurse practitioners (NPs), nurses and pharmacists specializing in pathology, oncology or surgical oncology caring for patients with cancer in community settings

Credit Information

Jointly Accredited Provider

In support of improving patient care, CME Outfitters, LLC, is jointly accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), to provide continuing education for the healthcare team.

Interprofessional (IPCE) 0.5

This activity was planned by and for the healthcare team, and learners will receive 0.5 Interprofessional Continuing Education (IPCE) Credit for learning and change.

Physicians (ACCME) 0.5

CME Outfitters, LLC, designates this enduring activity for a maximum of 0.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Nurses (ANCC) 0.5

This activity is designated for 0.5 contact hours.

Note for California Nurses

This continuing nursing education activity was approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing. CME Outfitters, LLC’s provider number is CEP15510.

Pharmacists (ACPE) 0.5

This application-based activity is approved for 0.5 contact hours (0.05 CEUs) of continuing pharmacy credit.
Activity UAN: JA0007185-0000-23-026-H01-P

PAs (AAPA) 0.5

CME Outfitters, LLC, has been authorized by the American Academy of PAs (AAPA) to award AAPA Category 1 CME credit for activities planned in accordance with AAPA CME Criteria. This activity is designated for 0.5 AAPA Category 1 CME credits. Approval is valid until expiration date listed above. PAs should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation.


Successful completion of this CME activity, which includes participation in the evaluation component, enables the participant to earn up to 0.5 medical knowledge MOC points in the American Board of Internal Medicine's (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. Participants will earn MOC points equivalent to the amount of CME credits claimed for the activity. It is the CME activity provider's responsibility to submit participant completion information to ACCME for the purpose of granting ABIM MOC credit.

Royal College MOC

Through an agreement between the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education and the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, medical practitioners participating in the Royal College MOC Program may record completion of accredited activities registered under the ACCME’s “CME in Support of MOC” program in Section 3 of the Royal College’s MOC Program.

MIPS Improvement Activity

Completion of this accredited CME activity meets the expectations of an Accredited Safety or Quality Improvement Program (IA_PSPA_28) for the Merit-based Incentive Payment Program (MIPS). Clinicians should submit their improvement activities by attestation via the CMS Quality Payment Program website.

Disclosure Declaration

It is the policy of CME Outfitters, LLC, to ensure independence, balance, objectivity, and scientific rigor and integrity in all of their CE activities. Faculty must disclose to the participants any relationships with commercial companies whose products or devices may be mentioned in faculty presentations, or with the commercial supporter of this CE activity. CME Outfitters, LLC, has evaluated, identified, and mitigated any potential conflicts of interest through a rigorous content validation procedure, use of evidence-based data/research, and a multidisciplinary peer review process.

Dr. Arun reports the following financial relationships:

Grants: Department of Defense (DOD); Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT); National Cancer Institute (NCI); and Susan G. Komen

Research Support: AstraZeneca (paid to the institution)

Dr. Schalper reports the following financial relationships:

Advisory Board: AstraZeneca; Bristol Myers Squibb; EMD Serono; Genmab; Merck & Co., Inc.; Molecular Templates, Inc.; OnCusp; Parthenon Therapeutics Inc.; Shattuck Labs, Inc.; Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc.; and Torque Therapeutics/Repertoire Immune Medicines

Consultant: Agenus Inc.; Clinica Alemana Santiago; Roche; and Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc.

Research Support: Akoya Biosciences; AstraZeneca; Boehringer-Ingelheim; Bristol Myers Squibb; Eli Lilly and Company; Merck & Co., Inc.; Moderna, Inc.; Navigate BioPharma Services, Inc.; Pierre Fabre; Ribon Therapeutics; Roche; Surface Oncology; Takeda Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc.; and Tesaro/GSK

Speakers Bureau:  Forefront Collaborative and PeerView

Disclosures were obtained from the CME Outfitters, LLC staff: No disclosures to report:

  • Shirley Michelle Franks, MSN, APRN, FNP-BC (peer reviewer)
  • Thomas Mitchell (planning committee)
  • David Modrak, PhD (planning committee)
  • Susan H. Yarbrough, CHCP (planning committee)
  • Sandra Caballero, PharmD (planning committee)
  • Sharon Tordoff (planning committee)

Faculty of this CE activity may include discussions of products or devices that are not currently labeled for use by the FDA. The faculty have been informed of their responsibility to disclose to the audience if they will be discussing off-label or investigational uses (any uses not approved by the FDA) of products or devices.

Obtaining Credit

Post-tests, credit request forms, and activity evaluations must be completed online (requires free account activation), and participants can print their certificate or statement of credit immediately (75% pass rate required). This website supports all browsers except Internet Explorer for Mac. For complete technical requirements and privacy policy, visit our Privacy & Confidentiality page.

Questions about this activity?

Call us at 877.CME.PROS (877.263.7767).


Genetic Testing and Biomarkers in Cancer: A Community Oncology Approach
Event Date: 04/17/2023