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Featured Clinical Trials

Highlighted NCI-Supported Cancer Studies
  • Posted: 04/13/2004

Study of Combination Biological Therapy for Metastatic Colorectal Cancer

Name of the Trial

Phase II Randomized Study of Bevacizumab and Cetuximab With or Without Irinotecan in Patients With Irinotecan-Refractory Metastatic Colorectal Cancer (MSKCC-03135). See the protocol summary.

Principal Investigator

Dr. Leonard Saltz
Dr. Leonard Saltz
Principal Investigator

Dr. Leonard Saltz of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Why This Trial Is Important

Colorectal cancer (cancer that occurs in the colon or the rectum) is among the most commonly diagnosed and most deadly cancers in the United States. Colorectal cancer can usually be cured if detected early; however, if it has spread (metastasized) to other parts of the body, it is often fatal. Scientists are eager to find more effective treatments or combinations of treatments for metastatic colorectal cancer.

Monoclonal antibodies, such as cetuximab (Erbitux®) and bevacizumab (Avastin®), are playing an increasingly important role in cancer therapy. Cetuximab targets a protein that some types of cancer need for growth. Bevacizumab interferes with the ability of a tumor to establish a blood supply. Combining cetuximab and bevacizumab with traditional chemotherapy drugs, such as irinotecan, may slow the progression of disease or even improve survival for patients with metastatic colorectal cancer.

"With this trial, we're taking the two newest targeted therapies for colorectal cancer and combining them to see if they are more effective than standard chemotherapy, either as a stand-alone treatment or in combination with irinotecan," said Dr. Saltz.

Contact Information

This trial is closed to further patient accrual. To locate other colon or rectal cancer clinical trials, search the NCI's database of clinical trials or call the NCI's Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237). The call is toll free and completely confidential.