Sunday, November 29, 2015

Stop talking and start doing

Friday, November 6, 2015, 1:58 PM
A slightly fatigued Patient #1 is in Washington D.C. for the Society For Immunotherapy in Cancer (SITC) annual conference held on Friday and Saturday. There’s a big patient immunotherapy forum – for melanoma, leukemia, lung, and genitourinary cancers – happening here tomorrow morning... Read more

A FasterBlog for FasterCures

Tuesday, November 3, 2015, 2:38 PM
I wish I could coherently, accurately, comprehensively blog about Day One of the Milken Family Foundation’s FasterCures “Partnering For Cures” Global Conference. I cannot. I’ll try, of course, but it would be impossible to do this exchange of ideas justice in a few words.... Read more

A busy week for FDA approvals of melanoma drugs

Friday, October 30, 2015, 4:09 PM
The FDA was busy this week with melanoma. First up – Amgen and their oncolytic virus therapy IMLYGIC (alimogene laherparepvec, or most widely known as T-Vec) received approval for melanoma. It’s a completely different approach to immunotherapy. Instead of unlocking brakes as checkpoint... Read more

Beating cancer by 'out living it'

Friday, October 23, 2015, 3:50 PM
“You beat cancer by HOW you live, WHY you live, and the MANNER in which you live.” – Stuart Scott. I spent last Friday and Saturday with 30-some cyclists and another dozen or so supporters riding through the Florida Keys. Normally that’s a pretty cool accomplishment. When it’s... Read more

PD-1 gets more FDA approvals

Friday, October 16, 2015, 1:47 PM
October has been a good month for immunotherapies, and for those on immunotherapies. Shameless plug for the latter – as you read this, I am in the middle of cycling 100 miles (over two days) from Key Largo to Key West, with a bunch of other cancer patients/survivors under 40. More next week... Read more

15 miles for a 15 year milestone

Friday, October 2, 2015, 11:49 AM
15 years ago today, I walked into NYU Medical Center and had a 1.3mm mole removed from my clavicle. It’s hard to even fathom how tiny that is — the thickness of two lead pencil points. And it is even more difficult to comprehend how that tiny cluster of abnormal, invasive cells has altered... Read more

Patient #1 shares how to find the right treatment

Tuesday, September 29, 2015, 10:03 AM
This Thursday, I will keynote an online melanoma symposium. The two-day Cancer Research and Oncology conference is being hosted by Labroots (in an ironic twist, my presentation is sponsored by Roche Diagnostics; it is a division of Hoffman-La Roche, the very first client I worked at as a 22-year-old... Read more

Speaking from the heart with Patient Empowerment Network

Thursday, September 3, 2015, 11:34 AM
This spring, I had the honor of speaking as part of a panel of doctors and patients in Phoenix, AZ, for a one-day melanoma town hall produced by the advocacy site Andrew Schorr, a two-time cancer survivor and founder of Patient Power, hosted the event that brought together a local... Read more

Patient #1 takes a good, hard look in the mirror

Monday, August 31, 2015, 6:00 AM
Hey T.J., it’s your reflection speaking. You’ve had quite a few months this July and August. Three infusions, and a scan, with stable disease. You’re always optimistic, right? Well, yes. I feel great. Thanks for asking. Your son’s third birthday, packing up one residence... Read more

A few bits of advice for President Carter

Thursday, August 27, 2015, 5:28 PM
I don’t usually watch TV during my infusions, but then again, former Presidents of the United States don’t usually announce their melanoma diagnosis. As widely reported, Jimmy Carter has cancer – not brain cancer, not liver cancer, but melanoma in his brain and liver. He’s... Read more
About this blog
T.J. Sharpe is sharing his fight against Stage 4 Melanoma. A South Jersey native and Bishop Eustace graduate, he currently lives in Fort Lauderdale, FL with his wife Jennifer and children Josie and Tommy. He was Patient #1 in a clinical trial at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa as the first person worldwide to use this sequence of treatments to fight melanoma, and is currently in a second clinical trial at Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale receiving Merck’s anti-PD-1 drug Lambrolizumab

The Patient #1 blog will update the progress of T.J.'s fight against cancer, and also touch on many cancer-related topics.

Follow T.J. on Twitter and Facebook. Reach T.J. at

T.J. Sharpe
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