Health & Wellness

Press Releases

Atlantic Health System Cancer Care First in World to Begin Clinical Trial of Novel Virus-Based Immunotherapy for Late-Stage Melanoma; First Patient Enrolled

Dr. Eric Whitman Leads Study of Experimental Drug That Uses Cold Virus to Disable Cancer Cells in Patients Who Have Not Responded to Other Treatments

Morristown, NJ Atlantic Health System Cancer Care is the first oncology institution in the world to sign on to, and to enroll the first patient in, a multicenter Phase IIa clinical trial of OBP-301 (Telomelysin®), a virus-based immunotherapy for late-stage melanoma that has not responded to other treatments. 

This leading-edge experimental therapy, which is under development by Japanese biotechnology company Oncolys BioPharma, uses the common cold virus to modify a gene that can selectively replicate in, and destroy, cancer cells. The study protocol was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in June.

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The clinical trial is being led locally by Eric D. Whitman, MD, FACS, medical director of Atlantic Health System Cancer Care and director of the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center’s Atlantic Melanoma Center at Morristown Medical Center and Overlook Medical Center.

“This targeted immunotherapy holds great promise for improving survival rates in patients with unresectable and metastatic melanoma,” said Dr. Whitman.  “We are proud to have been chosen as the first site for this leading edge clinical trial, and happy to be able to offer a wide range of the latest established and experimental treatments to our patients.”

Melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, affects more than 50,000 people each year. Although the chances of having melanoma increase with age, the number of cases among young adults is rising every year. Melanoma can have serious health consequences and may even be fatal.

The OBP-301 trial is a multicenter, Phase IIa study to evaluate how melanoma tumors respond to injection of this drug in patients with Stage III and Stage IV melanoma -- that is, to determine how much the drug shrinks or destroys tumors after it is injected into them.  The study, which will also look at potential side effects, is “open label,” meaning that all participants in the study will receive OBP-301. 

OBP-301 is a type of virus known as an adenovirus. Adenoviruses are common in nature and when they multiply in normal human cells they may cause infections that result in symptoms like those of the common cold or the flu.  OBP-301 has been genetically changed from the original virus to reproduce in target cancer cells that are emitting a certain signal. As a result of this reproduction, OBP-301 is believed to burst and kill tumor cells.

Study participants will receive multiple injections into their tumors over a period of several weeks.  Blood tests will be done to evaluate the level of virus in patients’ systems, and for immune response monitoring. Dr. Whitman and colleagues will also evaluate how long it takes to get a response and how long responses last, as well as overall survival and progression-free survival rates.

In preclinical studies, Oncolys demonstrated OBP-301’s anti-tumor activity in various types of cancer cells.  A Phase I clinical trial in the U.S. demonstrated the drug’s safety, and showed that it shrank tumors in a majority of study participants, who had a variety of solid tumors.  Additional studies of the drug have been completed, or are underway, in Japan, Korea and Taiwan.

The Atlantic Melanoma Center, a clinical and research center of excellence, is an internationally-recognized program. The center’s multidisciplinary approach-- combining the expertise of board-certified surgeons, medical oncologists, pathologists, radiation oncologists and nurses – treats all forms of melanoma, including those in the skin, mucous membranes and eyes.  Patients receive the latest medical treatments, and when needed, melanoma surgery is also available. 

For more information on the OBP-301 clinical trial or other studies, please call the Atlantic Melanoma Center at 973-971-7111.  

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SOMA

Village Coffee Sign Tweaks Starbucks, Clarus Twitter Trails, and School Shuffles

When Starbucks coffee opened in the new Clarus development complex at the former Maplewod Village post office site, some wondered what effect it might have on Village Coffee, the longtime java spot just down the street.

Village Coffee owner Ketan Patel sees no big impact as of yet and a visit to the shop finds the same customer traffic as usual.

One addition, however, is a sign posted at ...

South Orange Maplewood School District Board of Education Update - October 16 Meeting

October 21, 2017

Highlights from the October 16, 2017, meeting of the Board of Education.

Overview

Before the meeting began, Columbia High School students Josie Sandor and Mary Arevallo were sworn in as the new Student Representative and Alternate Student Representative to the Board of Education.

The meeting began with a celebration that Seth Boyden Elementary, South Mountain Elementary, and Tuscan ...

Marshall School Recognizes Hispanic Heritage Month

It is Hispanic Heritage Month and at Marshall Elementary School Mr. Martínez’s 2nd grade class honored the histories, cultures and contributions of famous individuals whose ancestors or they themselves came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.

Hispanic Heritage Month is observed in the United States from September 15th through October 15th. These ...

Access & Equity: Statement from School Board Candidate Donna Smith

October 22, 2017

There has been a lot of discussion around equity in our district, but it is important to identify what we mean by “equity.” I define equity as believing that each child has the capacity to be successful, ensuring that we empower our student learners and provide them with what they need to succeed. This includes a rigorous curriculum, effective supports, a climate that supports ...

South Orange - Maplewood Board of Education Election: Felicia George and Avery Julien Candidate Statement

Putting Students First!

South Orange-Maplewood School Board candidates Felicia George (CHS ’12) and Avery Julien (CHS ’17) have unveiled their campaign platform focused on Putting Students First! The two first-time candidates and recent Columbia High School graduates are trading upon their on-the-ground experience as students in the school district ...

South Orange Police Blotter - Four Bicycle Thefts from Train Stations

October 19, 2017

South Orange Police Blotter as of October 19

Theft of Bicycle - An Orange resident reported that sometime between 3:30 p.m. and 11:15 p.m. on Wednesday, October 11, actor(s) unknown stole his black and yellow Mongoose brand bicycle that was locked and secured to a bike rack at the South Orange Train Station.

Theft of Bicycle - A South Orange resident reported that ...

Maplewood Police Blotter - 7 Thefts from Autos and 2 Vehicle Thefts Reported

October 10 - Shoplifting; At approximately 3:30 p.m. Wawa reported that a male left the building with several items without paying. Responding officers were able to locate the male a short distance away. The male, 51 year old Gregory Singleton of Union was arrested for shoplifting as well as an outstanding warrant.

October 10 - Malicious Damage; Sometime during the ...

SOMA Two Towns for All Ages to Host 'Repair Cafe' on Saturday, Oct. 21

October 19, 2017

MAPLEWOOD, NJ - There are over 1,000 Repair Cafés worldwide and the first one in New Jersey in coming to SOMA this Saturday, October 21, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Morrow Memorial Church (600 Ridgewood Road, Maplewood).

The Repair Cafe was suggested by South Orange resident Lorraine Graves, who brought the concept to Cathy Rowe, the coordinator of SOMA: Two Towns for ...

'Strut Your Mutt' Parade in South Mountain Dog Park on Saturday, Oct. 21

MAPLEWOOD, NJ -  This Saturday, October 21, is Strut Your Mutt, the annual Essex County Canine Halloween Costume Parade and Contest.

Two parades are planned, one at 2 p.m. in the afternoon (with registration at 1:15 p.m.) at the Essex County South Mountain Dog Park on Crest Drive in Maplewood/Millburn, and one at 10 a.m. in the morning (with registration at 9:15 a.m.) at ...

Upcoming Events

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Mon, October 23, 10:30 AM

Seton Hall University, South Orange

Ryan Roa - It's Complicated

Arts & Entertainment

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Tue, October 24, 10:30 AM

Seton Hall University, South Orange

Ryan Roa - It's Complicated

Arts & Entertainment

Carousel_image_24dfebf016d155f25e1b_ryan_roa_postcard_front_lo_res

Wed, October 25, 10:30 AM

Seton Hall University, South Orange

Ryan Roa - It's Complicated

Arts & Entertainment

Wed, October 25, 12:00 PM

Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel, South Orange

The Purposes and Rhythms of Jewish Living

Education Religions And Spirituality

Donna Smith for BOE - one of hardest working members of our Board

October 16, 2017

I’m pleased to endorse Donna Smith for a second term of the Board of Education.

Donna has been involved with our public schools since 1998, first as a PTA mom and as a BOE member since 2015. Throughout her years of service, Donna has been an advocate for all children to have options and choices over their academic careers, in terms of subject matter and finding the course environment ...

Donna Smith - a fierce, consistent, commitment to improving the educational experience of all of our students.

Donna Smith stands out in the crowded field of BOE candidates. She has a long and continuous history of service to SOMA schools. She knows our past and has a vision for our future. Donna is level-headed, reasonable, practical, thoughtful, and hard-working. Most importantly, Donna has demonstrated a fierce, consistent, commitment to improving the educational experience of all of our ...

Family Health

Second Opinion on Breast Cancer Program Offers Peace of Mind

A breast cancer diagnosis can change a person’s life. And during such devastating news, the sheer amount of information regarding treatment and follow-up care can quickly become overwhelming. However, patients are not alone in this fight. Atlantic Health System’s Breast Cancer Second Opinion Program at Carol G. Simon Cancer Center, Overlook Medical Center, is helping provide peace of ...

Pedestrian Struck on South Livingston Avenue Saturday Night

October 22, 2017

LIVINGSTON, NJ — An unidentified individual was transported to Morristown Medical Canter around 8 p.m. on Saturday after being struck by a vehicle on South Livingston Avenue.

Police and emergency medical services arrived on the scene in the area of 483 South Livingston Avenue (ShopRite). The individual was seen being treated near the parking lot at Sweet Basil's Cafe with the ...

Christie, Booker, and Baraka Show Strong Support for Newark to be Next Amazon HQ

NEWARK, NJ - A bipartisan trinity of New Jersey politico firepower assembled in downtown Newark to shoot the first salvo needed to score a major economic triumph for New Jersey's largest city: the construction in Newark of the new corporate headquarters for Amazon, the world's largest online retailer.  

All three of the prime politicians in place inside Rutgers Business ...

Union Man Indicted in Stabbing Death of His Father

October 21, 2017

UNION, NJ – A five-count indictment has been returned against a Union man charged with fatally stabbing his father in May, acting Union County Prosecutor Thomas K. Isenhour announced Friday.

Jeffrey Adams, 21, is charged with first-degree murder, second-degree aggravated arson, third-degree hindering apprehension, and two related weapons offenses in connection with the death of his ...

Owners of Westfield's ‘Watcher House’ Considering Appeal After Judge Dismisses Lawsuit

WESTFIELD, NJ — The current owners of the notorious “Watcher House” at 657 Boulevard are considering an appeal after Superior Court Judge Camille M. Kenny dismissed the civil lawsuit against the former owners on Wednesday, according to the family’s attorney, Lee Levitt.

In a statement provided by the Broaddus family to their attorney, they maintain that, in ...

Mahopac’s Frank Lloyd Wright House Back on the Market

October 12, 2017

MAHOPAC, NY — If you have about $15 million to spare, you can own the Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired home, which comes with its own island, on Lake Mahopac.

The iconic home, once rumored to have been purchased by Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt (those rumors were false), is back on the market with a selling price of $14,920,000.

The sale is being handled by high-end real estate brokers ...

Maplewood Catering Company Takes Top Prize for Best Digital Marketing Plan at NJ Small Business Development Centers' Fourth Annual Internet Marketing Week

October 21, 2017

The New Jersey Small Business Development Centers network through its Headquarters at Rutgers Business School wrapped up its fourth annual Internet Marketing Week (IMW), where 20 small business owners came together to receive four days of intensive counseling-training on developing a digital blueprint strategy for their companies.

The specialized sessions were presented at Rutgers Business ...

Advisory Message from Maplewood Police: Bicycle Theft Prevention-Locks

The Maplewood Police Department had several reported bicycle thefts reported last month. Some of these thefts were unsecured bicycles, but many were of bicycles that had been locked up by their owners. It appears that the majority of these locks that were defeated by the thieves were the cable lock style. Although the Maplewood Police Department does not endorse a specific style or brand, below ...

Weekly Specials at Ashley Marketplace & Cafe - October 20 to October 26

Shop Ashley Marketplace & Cafe for your everyday needs!

This week's specials are:

Tuna Steaks  $12.99lb (Ashley Fish Market)
Sweet Scoops Frozen Yogurt $4.99
Boar’s Head Hard Salami $8.99lb (Deli)
Food Should Taste Good Tortilla Chips  2/$6
Asparagus $2.49lb
Grilled London Broil $10.99lb (Prep Food)
Bottom Round Roast $4.98 (Meat)
Stonyfield ...