Biotech Strategy Blog

Commentary on Science, Innovation & New Products with a focus on Oncology, Hematology & Cancer Immunotherapy

Posts tagged ‘AURELIA ovarian cancer trial’

Ovarian cancer is an often neglected area in cancer drug development and historically has often been one of the last solid tumours to be evaluated as part of a life cycle management program. There are a number of reasons for this, but recently that situation has begun to change as our knowledge of the underlying biology improves and new agents are developed that target the particular oncogenic aberrations.

It is a tumour type that ranks 5th in cancer deaths amongst women and accounts for more deaths than any other gynaecologic cancer. Indeed, in 2014 nearly 22,000 women are estimated to be diagnosed with this cancer in the U.S. and approx. 14,000 will likely die from the disease.

Earlier this month the FDA approved bevacizumab (Avastin) in combination with chemotherapy (paclitaxel plus pegylated liposomal doxorubicin or topetecan) for the treatment of platinum-resistant, recurrent epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC), fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancer who have received no more than two prior therapies. The approval was based on the phase 3 AURELIA trial (n=361), which demonstrated an improvement in median progression free survival (PFS) of 6.8 vs. 3.4 months (HR 0.38, P<0.0001). This means that the women in the trial saw a 62% reduction in the risk of their symptoms worsening compared to chemotherapy alone.

Surprisingly, this advance represented the first new treatment option in this setting for 15 years!

The good news is that beyond Avastin, there are a number of other promising agents in development for ovarian cancer. At this year’s EORTC-AACR-NCI Molecular Targets meeting held in Barcelona, new data was presented on several such compounds that are well worth highlighting.

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Last week saw the release of the majority of the abstracts for the 2013 European Cancer Congress that takes place at the RAI conference center in Amsterdam from September 27 to October 1st (Twitter hashtag #ECC2013). Not yet available are the late-breakers and those abstracts included in the media press conference program.

ECCO Congress BannerThe European Cancer Congress is the euro equivalent of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) annual meeting and is organized in alternate years by the European CanCer Organization (ECCO) and European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO). This year it’s the turn of ECCO who ran an excellent meeting in Stockholm in 2011.

Scan the QR code to download the ECCO Amsterdam Cancer Congress AppHere are links to the #ECC2013 abstracts and searchable Congress programme.

There is also an ECCO App that’s well worth downloading. It offers the meeting program with links to abstracts, as well as floor plans and can also be used to follow the #ECC2013 conversation on Twitter.

ECCO have made it as easy as possible for people to download the app, just scan the QR code and it will take you to the download page for your phone (iPhone or Android).

ECCO have also published their list of abstracts not to be missed – a few on their list that stand out for me include:

Breast Cancer:

1859 – PI3KCA mutations and correlation with pCR in the NeoALTTO trial (BIG 01-06)

Prostate Cancer:

2853: An open-label phase 1/II safety, pharmacokinetic, and proof-of-concept study of ODM-201 in patients with progressive metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (CRPC).

2854: The effects of enzalutamide (ENZA) in combination with abiraterone acetate (AA) in patients with bone metastatic castration resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC)

Lung Cancer:

3401:  Updated results of a first-in-human dose finding study of the ALK/EGFR inhibitor AP26113 in patients with advanced malignancies.

3408: Clinical activity, safety and biomarkers of PD-L1 blockade in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC): additional analyses from a clinical study of the engineered antibody MPDL3280A (anti-PDL1)

Ovarian Cancer:

In the plenary Presidential sessions several of the presentations focus on ovarian cancer with results being report for the following trials: ICON6 (cediranib), AURELIA (bevacizumab), ICON7 (bevacizumab).

As always I will be mining the posters for gems, and attending as many of the scientific and educational sessions as I can.

Regretably, to offset costs, I will be introducing a paywall for most of the conference coverage from ECC2013 in Amsterdam. In this respect I’m following leading publications such as The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal. I will be providing some additional commentary to those who subscribe to BSB email alerts so do sign up if you have not already done so.

I hope to see you in Amsterdam!

Update Sept 17: Preview of Late Breaking Abstracts and PI3K Abstracts

Sally Church (@MaverickNY) has published her ECCO 2013 preview on Pharma Strategy Blog (free access). Abstracts that caught Sally’s attention included those on T-DM1, everolimus, FLT1 gene varation in NSCLC and evaluation of GDC-0032, a next generation PI3K inhibitor.

Data on GDC-0032 and its early promise in breast cancer was presented at the AACR annual meeting earlier this year.

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