SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. Oct. 16, 2013 By all measures, the addition of nab-paclitaxel for the treatment of patients with advanced pancreatic cancer was superior to the survival for patients who received only gemcitabine, according to the results of a study led by the Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) and Scottsdale Healthcare, published today by The New England Journal of Medicine.
The study of 861 patients, conducted at 151 community and academic centers in 11 nations, found that the 431 patients assigned nab-paclitaxel in addition to the standard-of-care gemcitabine had significantly improved overall survival, progression-free survival, and drug response rates than for the 430 assigned to gemcitabine alone.
"This large, randomized, international, phase 3 study showed that the nab-paclitaxel plus gemcitabine led to a significant improvement in survival at all time points," said Dr. Daniel D. Von Hoff, TGen Distinguished Professor and Physician-In-Chief, and Chief Scientific Officer for the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center Clinical Trials at Scottsdale Healthcare, a partnership with TGen.
"The rate of survival was significantly higher in the nab-paclitaxel-gemcitabine group than in the gemcitabine group," said Dr. Von Hoff, lead author among the study's 23 co-authors and more than 130 researchers. He served as Principal Investigator of MPACT (Metastatic Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma Clinical Trial), which included sites in North America, Europe and Australia.
Dr. Von Hoff, considered among the nation's leading authorities on pancreatic cancer, also was the principal investigator for the first clinical trial of gemcitabine, the first therapy to show improvement in survival for patients with pancreatic cancer. The FDA approved gemcitabine in 1996.
On Sept. 6, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved nab-paclitaxel (produced by Celgene Corporation under the brand name Abraxane) for use in adva
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The Translational Genomics Research Institute