(HealthDay News) – A two-step immunotherapy approach and a novel antibody-drug conjugate, DMUC5754A, show promise for advanced ovarian cancer, according to two studies presented at the annual meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research, held April 4–10 in Washington, DC.

Lana Kandalaft, PharmD, PhD, from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and colleagues examined the feasibility, safety, and biological and clinical efficacy of a two-step immunotherapy approach for patients with advanced ovarian cancer receiving bevacizumb. Thirty-one patients underwent dendritic cell vaccination, and 11 who responded underwent adoptive T-cell therapy. The researchers found that 19 patients showed clinical benefit and developed an antitumor immune response following vaccination; of these, at the end of the study, eight had no measurable disease, and one remained disease-free for 42 months following vaccination. Of the patients who underwent adoptive T-cell therapy, seven had stable disease and one exhibited a complete response.

Joyce F. Liu, MD, MPH, from the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, and colleagues assessed the safety, pharmacokinetics, and pharmacodynamic activity of DMUC5754A in 44 patients with advanced, recurrent, platinum-resistant ovarian cancer. The researchers identified one complete response and four partial responses, all of which occurred at a dose of 2.4mg/kg and in patients with high expression of MUC16. There were two dose-limiting toxicities, both of which occurred at the maximum dose (3.2mg/kg). The most commonly reported adverse event was fatigue (57%); other adverse events included nausea, vomiting, decreased appetite, peripheral neuropathy, and diarrhea.

“If the activity of this drug is confirmed in additional trials, this will represent a novel type of therapy for ovarian cancer,” Liu said in a statement.

DMUC5754A is developed by Genentech.

Abstract — Kandalaft
Abstract — Liu
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