The Role of Angiogenesis in Previously Treated Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer (NSCLC) Presented by Karen Reckamp, MD, MS Co-Director, Lung Cancer and Thoracic Oncology Program Medical Director, Clinical Research Operations City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center Duarte, California
I’m Karen Reckamp, I’m the medical director of the Thoracic Oncology Program and the medical director of Clinical Research at City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center in Duarte, California. The role of angiogenesis in lung cancer is really blood vessels feed the tumor and provide the nutrients that the tumor needs to grow and spread and cause metastases. Anti-angiogenic therapy generally in the form of antibody for non-small cell lung cancer can block that and inhibit blood vessel growth thus stunting tumor growth and the ability to develop metastases. The drug that is approved for second-line therapy with chemotherapy Docetaxel is Ramucirumab. This is an anti-VEGF receptor antibody and it binds to the receptor to block the blood vessel growth and inhibit tumor growth. It does this well in conjunction with chemotherapy. There was a clinical trial evaluating Ramucirumab and Docetaxel versus Docetaxel alone as second-line therapy following progression on initial chemotherapy for metastatic non-small cell lung cancer. This included both patients with non-squamous histology and with squamous histology so all non-small cell lung cancers. Patients had an improvement in time to the tumor growth, in overall survival time, and in the amount of the tumor shrinkage for the combination of Ramucirumab and Docetaxel over Docetaxel alone. There are more side effects with the combination and so more people had fevers and low blood counts, but overall the patients did well with both and had limited number of reasons to discontinue. There were similar numbers of patients who died from the treatment in both arms.
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