EURTAC Phase III study: Erlotinib nearly doubles progression-free survival vs. chemotherapy

July 5, 2011

In the first phase III study to include Western lung cancer patients, first-line treatment with erlotinib (Tarceva) nearly doubled progression-free survival compared with chemotherapy, according to research presented at the 14th World Conference on Lung Cancer in Amsterdam, hosted by the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC).

Erlotinib is a (TKI) that targets the (EGFR). Non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients with EGFR activating mutations tend to respond well to TKI therapy.

"Although a growing body of evidence has been emerging about this type of lung cancer, almost all of the studies have been conducted in , a group that historically has had significantly different results to NSCLC therapy compared to Western populations," said principal investigator Dr. Radj Gervais, M.D., of the Centre François Baclesse in Caen, France. "EURTAC is the first Phase III study with first-line in Western patients with this genetically distinct type of advanced NSCLC."

Researchers tested more than 1,000 patients over a five-year-period to find the study population of 174 patients, which were randomly assigned to receive erlotinib or platinum-based chemotherapy.

The response rate to erlotinib was 54.5%, compared with 10.5% to chemotherapy, according to preliminary results. Progression-free survival in the erlotinib arm was 9.4 months, compared with 5.2 months in the chemotherapy arm. Median survival was 22.9 months in the erlotinib arm and 18.8 months in the chemotherapy arm.

"Our results showed that first-line erlotinib nearly doubled progression-free survival; that's a significant improvement over chemotherapy, with a better tolerability profile," Dr. Gervais said. "We now have results for the use of first-line erlotinib in Asian and Western EGFR mutation-positive patients with NSCLC, and so we can carry this knowledge into our daily practice. I think EURTAC really is a big step towards individualized lung cancer care."

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Molecular changes with age in normal breast tissue are linked to cancer-related changes

July 20, 2017
Several known factors are associated with a higher risk of breast cancer including increasing age, being overweight after menopause, alcohol intake, and family history. However, the underlying biologic mechanisms through ...

Immune-cell numbers predict response to combination immunotherapy in melanoma

July 20, 2017
Whether a melanoma patient will better respond to a single immunotherapy drug or two in combination depends on the abundance of certain white blood cells within their tumors, according to a new study conducted by UC San Francisco ...

Discovery could lead to better results for patients undergoing radiation

July 19, 2017
More than half of cancer patients undergo radiotherapy, in which high doses of radiation are aimed at diseased tissue to kill cancer cells. But due to a phenomenon known as radiation-induced bystander effect (RIBE), in which ...

Definitive genomic study reveals alterations driving most medulloblastoma brain tumors

July 19, 2017
The most comprehensive analysis yet of medulloblastoma has identified genomic changes responsible for more than 75 percent of the brain tumors, including two new suspected cancer genes that were found exclusively in the least ...

Novel CRISPR-Cas9 screening enables discovery of new targets to aid cancer immunotherapy

July 19, 2017
A novel screening method developed by a team at Dana-Farber/Boston Children's Cancer and Blood Disorders Center—using CRISPR-Cas9 genome editing technology to test the function of thousands of tumor genes in mice—has ...

How CD44s gives brain cancer a survival advantage

July 19, 2017
Understanding the mechanisms that give cancer cells the ability to survive and grow opens the possibility of developing improved treatments to control or cure the disease. In the case of glioblastoma multiforme, the deadliest ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.