ASCO 2015: Drug combination promising for some lung cancer patients

May 29, 2015 | by Nicole Levine

Lung cancer patients in need of improved treatment options may soon get good news, with a new combination therapy showing promise where other treatments have failed.

lung cancer City of Hope researchers share findings on a promising combination treatment for lung cancer.

Karen Reckamp, M.D., M.S., co-director of the Lung Cancer and Thoracic Oncology Program at City of Hope, will be among the researchers presenting data this week on a combination of the drugs cabozantinib and erlotinib. They'll be discussing their study at the American Society for Clinical Oncology annual meeting in Chicago.

Although lung cancer treatments have improved overall with the introduction of tyrosine kinase inhibitors, some patients develop resistance to the drugs. The common culprit is the resistance mutation known as T790M. Often, patients without that mutation also become resistant to the treatment.

That leaves patients without use of one of the primary type of drugs used to treat their disease.

"Lung cancer patients with these mutations have an unmet need, and they don't have significant options right now," Reckamp said.

In the current study, Reckamp and researchers at City of Hope and elsewhere found that a combination of cabozantinib and erlotinib benefited patients who had nonsmall cell lung cancer that was positive for the mutation EGFR and who were resistant to the tyrosin kinase inhibitors.

Further, while about half of  patients with tumors positive for the T790M mutation responded well, those without the mutation had an 86 percent response rate.

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Learn more about lung cancer treatment and research at City of Hope.

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Learn more about becoming a patient or getting a second opinion by visiting our website or by calling 800-826-HOPE (4673). You may also request a new patient appointment online. City of Hope staff will explain what's required for a consult at City of Hope and help you determine, before you come in, whether or not your insurance will pay for the appointment.

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