Oral therapy slows progression of advanced kidney cancer

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Pazopanib (Votrient) appears to delay disease progression by 54% in patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma, according to a study by Italian researchers.

Pazopanib (Votrient) appears to delay disease progression by 54% in patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma, according to a study by Italian researchers.

"Advanced renal cell carcinoma remains a challenging disease, but treatment has improved with the introduction of new targeted therapies over the past year, including pazopanib, which targets multiple pathways within cancer cells," said lead author Cora Sternberg, MD, of San Camillo and Forlanini Hospitals, Rome. "The recent FDA approval of pazopanib provides patients with a new oral treatment option that effectively slows the progression of their disease."

In the phase III study, which was published online in the Journal of Clinical Oncology (Jan. 25, 2010), 233 patients with previously untreated locally advanced or metastatic RCC and 202 other patients with RCC who had previously been treated with cytokine therapy were randomly assigned to receive pazopanib (290 patients) or placebo (145 patients).

Progression-free survival was more than two times longer for the pazopanib group (9.2 months) compared with the placebo group (4.2 months). This difference was especially pronounced among the previously untreated patients (11.1 months for the pazopanib group vs. 2.8 months for placebo), and persisted among those previously treated with cytokines (7.4 vs. 4.2 months, respectively).

Follow-up is ongoing to determine how the drug affects overall survival.Pazopanib is an oral, multi-targeted, tyrosine kinase inhibitor that binds to the vascular endothelial growth factor receptor, platelet-derived growth factor receptor, and the c-Kit receptor.

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