Hope for patients with advanced bowel cancer
Early results of North American trials of chemotherapy drug oxaliplatin
For patients with bowel cancer that has spread to other organs despite treatment there has been little hope until now. However, early results of trials in North America of a chemotherapy drug called oxaliplatin, given in conjunction with two standard drugs, 5-FU and leucovorin, delay tumour progression by 70% compared with the control component of the study. There is also a significant improvement in the symptoms these patients experience.
Dr Mace Rothenberg from the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Centre, Nashville, USA, lead a multi-centre trial in the USA involving 821 patients with advanced bowel – or colorectal - cancer to compare three different treatment strategies: 5-FU and leucovorin, oxaliplatin alone, or a combination of the drugs.
The delay in the progression and the shrinkage of the tumour lasted for a minimum of four weeks. "Both the delay in time to tumour progression and the reduction in tumour-related symptoms are very encouraging," said Dr Rothenberg, speaking at the European Society of Medical Oncology Congress in Nice, France, today (21 October 2002). "We found that patients suffered less from pain, weight loss and fatigue with the combination therapy."
The interim data from 463 patients were so promising that the US Food and Drug Administration gave its approval in August this year for oxaliplatin to be given to patients with advanced colorectal cancer that had progressed following first-line treatment. In Europe, however, oxaliplatin has been available since 1996. The drug is manufactured by Sanofi-Synthelabo in France.
Oxaliplatin can cause nausea, diarrhoea, anaemia and increased risk of infection, but on balance, the benefits appear to outweigh the side effects. 5-FU is given by intravenous drip and research is underway to find other easier means of delivery.
Bowel cancer affects nearly 150,000 people in the USA and around 35,000 people in the UK each year. It can arise in any part of the colon or rectum and is a leading cause of death.
"This trial should be fully mature in about six months. At that point we will know more about the impact of the oxaliplatin, 5-FU and leucovorin combination on the survival of patients with recurrent colorectal cancer," said Dr Rothenberg.
Gracemarie Bricalli | EurekAlert!
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
HZI researchers developed a bacterial strain that can be used in cancer therapy
Salmonellae are dangerous pathogens that enter the body via contaminated food and can cause severe infections. But these bacteria are also known to target...
University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event
On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...
Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...