A drug designed to stop tumours developing blood vessels could help women with advanced ovarian cancer live longer, preliminary tests suggest.
Patients who used Avastin in combination with chemotherapy, and then afterwards as a maintenance treatment, survived longer without the disease worsening compared to those treated with just chemotherapy.
Roche said the GOG 0218 trial was the first time this sort of therapy was shown to benefit advanced ovarian cancer, which needs more effective treatment options.
Roche did not provide any top-line results, but said women who used Avastin with the chemotherapy but received placebo in the maintenance phase showed no improvement over those treated without the drug.
Pascal Soriot, chief operating officer of Roche’s Pharmaceutical Division, said the results “could offer women with advanced ovarian cancer more time without their disease worsening”, but said ovarian cancer patients “still have a poor outlook”.
The two studies will be presented at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) in June.
Copyright Press Association 2010
Roche – Avastin