New Lung Cancer Drug Promising

SAN DIEGO, June 22 (UPI) — U.S. medical investigators say a drug under development by Pfizer Inc. is showing promising results in reducing lung cancer tumors during clinical trials.

Researchers at the University of California-San Diego’s Moores Cancer Center said the drug, crizotinib, may be of benefit to patients with a specific kind of lung cancer.

“The results of the first two trials have been very encouraging,” said Dr. Lyudmila Bazhenova, an assistant clinical professor who led the study. “The Phase III clinical trials will be critical in determining if this drug goes to market.”

According to a preliminary study presented in Chicago this month during the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, Phase I and II clinical trials demonstrated 57 percent of patients saw their tumors reduced and, at eight weeks of the treatment, 87 percent showed disease stabilization.

The Phase III clinical trial will compare crizotinib with standard-of-care chemotherapy. Through a randomized selection process, patients will either be treated with chemotherapy or crizotinib. If the patients given the chemotherapy do not respond to treatment, they will be given crizotinib at the end of the trial.

Candidates for the Phase III trial must have stage-four, non-small cell lung cancer and have gone through at least one round of chemotherapy. Potential candidates for the clinical trial can call the clinical trials hotline at 858-822-5354 for more information.

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