Lynparza stalls pancreatic cancer in patients with BRCA mutations: study

CHICAGO (Reuters) – AstraZeneca and Merck & Co’s Lynparza helped patients with advanced pancreatic cancer who carry BRCA gene mutations go longer without their disease worsening than those who received a placebo, according to data from a late-stage clinical trial presented on Sunday.

BRCA mutations are typically linked with breast and ovarian cancers, but occur in other cancers as well.

Lynparza was tested against a placebo as a maintenance therapy in 154 patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer whose tumors had not progressed after chemotherapy.

Those who received the Merck and AstraZeneca drug on average went 7.4 months before their disease began to worsen, a measure known as progression-free survival (PFS). That compared with a median PFS of 3.8 months for placebo, according to data presented at the American College of Clinical Oncology meeting in Chicago.

Patients had been screened for BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutations using Myriad Genetics’ BRACAnalysis CDx test.

For the 6-7% of pancreatic cancer patients who carry these inherited mutations, the finding is significant.

“This was clearly positive,” said Dr. Eileen O’Reilly, a pancreatic cancer expert at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, who helped lead the study.

O’Reilly said the findings reinforce new guidelines from the National Comprehensive Cancer Network recommending universal BRCA testing for all patients with pancreatic cancer.

Mutations in BRCA genes impair the ability to repair DNA damage, which can drive cancer growth. Lynparza and other drugs in the class known as PARP inhibitors exploit this weakness, keeping cancer cells damaged by chemotherapy from repairing themselves. Lynparza became the first PARP drug to reach the market with a U.S. approval for ovarian cancer in late 2014.

An interim analysis, however, showed the drug made no significant difference in overall survival.

“We typically see about 10 to 12 months” for overall survival in these patients, O’Reilly said. Patients in both arms of the Lynparza study lived about 18 to 19 months.

Dr. Roy Baynes, Merck’s chief medical officer, said the hope is that a delay in cancer progression will ultimately translate into longer survival.

“In pancreatic cancer, progress has been really slow so this is really quite exciting data for patients who have the BRCA mutation,” Baynes said.

Lynparza is an important growth driver for AstraZeneca, generating $647 million in sales last year. Analysts have forecast $2.5 billion in revenue from the drug in 2023, according to Refinitiv data. [L3N20L2TP] Use in pancreatic cancer in addition to breast and ovarian cancer would boost Lynparza sales and cement its lead over rival PARP inhibitors Rubraca from Clovis Oncology, GSK’s Zejula and Pfizer’s talazoparib.

Reporting by Julie Steenhuysen; additional reporting by Ludwig Burger in Frankfurt; editing by Bill Berkrot

Source

more recommended stories

  • Teleflex recalls breathing tubes worldwide after reports of 4 deaths

    (Reuters) – Teleflex Inc said on.

  • In border camps, Syrians rely on doctors in trucks and tents

    AZAZ, Syria (Reuters) – The Syrian.

  • Thailand bans pig imports from Laos after African swine fever outbreak

    BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand will ban.

  • FDA approves drug for loss of sexual desire in women

    (Reuters) – The U.S. drug regulator.

  • Missouri orders lone abortion clinic to close; judge keeps it open for now

    ST. LOUIS (Reuters) – Missouri health.

  • Merck CEO sees legal challenge if U.S. adopts drug pricing based on other countries

    NEW YORK (Reuters) – Merck &.

  • Strobing stage lights could up risk of epileptic seizures

    (Reuters Health) – Flashing light effects.

  • Euthanasia law takes effect in Australia’s Victoria state

    MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Voluntary euthanasia became.

  • China to suspend pork imports from third Canadian firm as dispute with Ottawa deepens

    BEIJING (Reuters) – China will block.

  • U.S. records 22 new measles cases, bringing year’s total to 1,044

    (Reuters) – The United States recorded.

  • WHO likely to declare Ebola an international emergency: experts

    GENEVA (Reuters) – The World Health.

  • WHO panel decides not to declare international Ebola emergency

    GENEVA (Reuters) – A World Health.

  • U.S. drugmakers file lawsuit against requiring drug prices in TV ads

    FILE PHOTO: Used blister packets that.

  • Death toll from UK hospital listeria outbreak rises to five

    LONDON (Reuters) – The number of.

  • Female soldiers wanting to suppress periods face barriers

    (Reuters Health) – Military women wanting.

  • Chronic depression after heart attack tied to increased risk of death

    (Reuters Health) – Heart attack survivors.

  • North Korea steps up measures to prevent spread of African swine fever

    SEOUL (Reuters) – North Korea has.

  • Missouri’s only abortion clinic to stay open after injunction issued

    (Reuters) – The only abortion clinic.

  • China to tighten rules on foreigners using genetic material

    FILE PHOTO: A researcher inserts a.

  • Experimental drug delays type 1 diabetes onset in mid-stage trial

    (Reuters Health) – In people at.

  • Abbott device helps in cutting blood sugar in type 2 diabetics: study

    (Reuters) – Insulin-dependent patients with type.

  • USDA investigates unapproved GMO wheat found in Washington state

    CHICAGO (Reuters) – The U.S. Department.

  • As pressure for Afghan peace grows, drug threat remains

    KANDAHAR, Afghanistan (Reuters) – Mohammad Ahmadi,.

  • One in four Ebola cases undetected in Congo: WHO

    GENEVA (Reuters) – Roughly a quarter.

  • U.S. health agency cancels research contract involving use of fetal tissue

    (Reuters) – The Department of Health.

  • Many U.S. kids still eating laundry pods

    Many American children are still being.

  • Nipah virus resurfaces in India’s Kerala after killing 17 last year

    NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The deadly.

  • Therapy in the office: banks take mental health fight in-house

    LONDON (Reuters) – In ‘Billions’, a.

  • Novartis hopes Kisqali data will help narrow gap to blockbuster rival

    ZURICH (Reuters) – Novartis has released.

  • Missouri abortion clinic to stay open for now after court order

    ST. LOUIS (Reuters) – Missouri’s only.

  • South Korea braces for African swine fever outbreak after North Korea case

    SEOUL (Reuters) – South Korea readied.

  • Louisiana governor to sign ‘heartbeat’ ban, latest move to curb U.S. abortion rights

    (Reuters) – Louisiana’s Democratic governor said.