The cancer field has experienced another setback this month.
AstraZeneca’s experimental drug selumetinib failed to meet its primary goal in a late-stage lung cancer trial. When the drug, an MEK 1/2 inhibitor, was combined with chemotherapy it did not slow lung cancer progression or prolong overall survival, the London-based drugmaker announced Tuesday.
The Phase 3 trial, SELECT-1, enrolled 510 patients with locally-advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who received either selumetinib or placebo in combination with chemotherapy. The trial followed promising Phase 2 results, which showed statistically-significant improvements in progression-free and overall survival.
Selumetinib is being studied as a treatment option in differentiated thyroid cancer and genetic disorder neurofibromatosis type 1. Last year, the drug failed in a trial for uveal melanoma, a rare disease in which cancer cells form in the eye’s tissue.
AstraZeneca has its focus on its recently launched cancer drugs Tagrisso and Lynparza. The company is also working on its cancer immunotherapy drug, durvalumab, particularly in hindsight of the challenge recently faced by Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Opdivo. Last Friday, BMS announced that Opdivo failed as a first-line treatment for advanced lung cancer in a clinical trial. Opdivo is approved to treat NSCLC after a patient has received chemotherapy. Still, the drug did not live up to major expectations that it would serve as a first-line therapy for patients.
Filed Under: Drug Discovery