A clinical study conducted at Henry Ford Hospital on the use of a drug to extend the survival of patients with the most common and aggressive type of brain cancer, has yielded results that were significantly better than expected. The randomized Phase 2 study focused on patients with glioblastoma multiforme (GBM), whose cancer had recurred after first- or second-line therapy. The study revealed that more than a third who were treated with Avastin (bevacizumab) alone, as well as more than half of those treated with Avastin in combination with the chemotherapy drug irinotecan, lived without further progression of the disease for a period of six months. In addition, no new or unexpected adverse effects from the use of Avastin were observed during the study.
“This is very encouraging news,” says Tom Mikkelsen, MD, a neuro-oncologist who is the study’s principal investigator at Henry Ford and co-director of the Hermelin Brain Tumor Center. “Historical estimates suggest that only 15 percent of patients with this aggressive type of brain cancer live without their cancer progressing within six months. Although gliomas [fast-growing malignant brain tumors] are nearly always incurable, use of a drug like Avastin may help to buy precious time for patients, as well as to preserve their physical and mental functions longer than was previously possible.”
Release date: Decemebr 13, 2007
Source: Henry Ford Medical Center
Filed Under: Drug Discovery