Chemoresponse assay helps boost ovarian cancer survival

April 25, 2013, Women & Infants Hospital

This spring, a team of researchers has released results from an eight-year study that shows improved survival rates for women diagnosed with ovarian cancer who undergo cancer tumor testing to determine the best treatment.

Part of the team was Richard G. Moore, MD, director of the Center for Biomarkers and and a with the Program in Women's at Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island.

"Essentially, we have demonstrated that by using a tissue sample from the patient's and a chemoresponse assay, we are able to determine which treatment may or may not work for her," Dr. Moore explains of the study, which was presented at a recent meeting of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology and in the trade publication Cure.

"This study shows that a woman with recurrent ovarian cancer could benefit from having a biopsy and chemosensitivity testing. The results from such testing will allow for the identification of chemotherapeutics that are active against the patient's disease and those that are not resulting in decreased toxicity from ineffective treatments. Learning that personal directed therapies may improve overall survival for these patients made this the first study in two decades to show a significant increase in survival in recurrent ."

The study, launched in 2004, included 283 women. Of those, 262 had successful biopsies which were tested in vitro, or in a test tube. The assay ChemoFx®, by Precision Therapeutics, tested up to 15 approved treatment regimens on the samples, identifying chemotherapy drugs and regimens to which each tumor might be sensitive. The study was non-interventional, meaning that physicians chose the treatment regimens without knowing of the assay results. The researchers then evaluated the assay's result against actual patient outcomes.

"The assay identified at least one treatment to which the tumor would be sensitive in 52% of patients in the study," Dr. Moore says. "Overall, median survival was 37.5 months for patients with treatment-sensitive tumors, compared to 23.9 months for intermediate and resistant tumors."

Assay-directed therapy has long been debated among oncologists, he continues. Such debate provided the impetus for this study.

Explore further: New drug combination slows tumor growth for recurrent ovarian cancer

Related Stories

New drug combination slows tumor growth for recurrent ovarian cancer

June 6, 2011
Bevacizumab (Avastin) in combination with chemotherapy resulted in a clinical benefit for patients with recurrent ovarian cancer, according to a new study. Results from the phase III "OCEANS" trial were presented today by ...

Molecular profiling reveals differences between primary and recurrent ovarian cancers

February 10, 2012
There is a need to analyze tumor specimens at the time of ovarian cancer recurrence, according to a new study published in Molecular Cancer Therapeutics. Researchers used a diagnostic technology called molecular profiling ...

SOG: Intraperitoneal chemo ups ovarian cancer survival

March 12, 2013
(HealthDay)—Intraperitoneal (IP) chemotherapy is associated with improved survival in advanced ovarian cancer compared with standard intravenous (IV) therapy, according to a study presented at the Society of Gynecologic ...

Researchers find possible key to preventing chemotherapy resistance in ovarian cancer

September 15, 2011
For patients with ovarian cancer and their physicians, resistance to chemotherapy is a serious concern. However, researchers at Moffitt Cancer Center have identified a molecular pathway that may play a key role in the evolution ...

Recommended for you

Researchers develop swallowable test to detect pre-cancerous Barrett's esophagus

January 17, 2018
Investigators at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center have developed a simple, swallowable test for early detection of Barrett's esophagus that offers promise ...

Scientists zoom in to watch DNA code being read

January 17, 2018
Scientists have unveiled incredible images of how the DNA code is read and interpreted—revealing new detail about one of the fundamental processes of life.

Presurgical targeted therapy delays relapse of high-risk stage 3 melanoma

January 17, 2018
A pair of targeted therapies given before and after surgery for melanoma produced at least a six-fold increase in time to progression compared to standard-of-care surgery for patients with stage 3 disease, researchers at ...

Dulling cancer therapy's double-edged sword

January 17, 2018
Researchers have discovered that killing cancer cells can actually have the unintended effect of fueling the proliferation of residual, living cancer cells, ultimately leading to aggressive tumor progression.

T-cells engineered to outsmart tumors induce clinical responses in relapsed Hodgkin lymphoma

January 16, 2018
WASHINGTON-(Jan. 16, 2018)-Tumors have come up with ingenious strategies that enable them to evade detection and destruction by the immune system. So, a research team that includes Children's National Health System clinician-researchers ...

More evidence of link between severe gum disease and cancer risk

January 16, 2018
Data collected during a long-term health study provides additional evidence for a link between increased risk of cancer in individuals with advanced gum disease, according to a new collaborative study led by epidemiologists ...

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.