In this study, researchers from the Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden (both London, UK), along with teams at nine other centres across the UK, tested a combination of vistusertib with paclitaxel chemotherapy on 25 women with high-grade, serous ovarian cancer and 40 patients with squamous non-small cell lung cancer.
The treatment combination caused tumors of over half of patients with ovarian cancer and over a third with lung cancer to shrink, and stopped patients’ cancers from growing for on average 5.8 months. The findings were recently published in the Annals of Oncology.
The investigators report that the combination was well tolerated with manageable side effects.
“What we saw was very exciting. Over half the women with ovarian cancer and over a third of lung cancer patients saw their tumours shrink – and these are patients who had exhausted all other options. The Phase II clinical trial of this drug is going well and I very much look forward to seeing the initial results, coming out later this year,” study leader Udai Banerji (Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden) explained.
The study was so successful that a Phase II trial began while the Phase I trial was still recruiting.
“In the larger Phase II trial we’ve recruited 140 women with relapsed ovarian cancer across the UK to standard chemotherapy (paclitaxel) or paclitaxel in combination with vistusertib. We need to wait for these results, expected later this year, to see how effective this approach is compared to chemotherapy alone,” commented Susana Banerjee (Institute of Cancer Research and The Royal Marsden) who is leading the Phase II trial.