Treatment for Advanced Carcinoid Tumors
Name of the Trial
Why This Trial Is Important
Doctors are eager to find new ways to treat advanced carcinoid tumors. One strategy being studied is the inhibition of tumor angiogenesis. Carcinoid tumors tend to produce a lot of blood vessels and may be susceptible to antiangiogenesis therapy.
The monoclonal antibody bevacizumab (Avastin) has been shown to inhibit tumor angiogenesis and is approved by the FDA to treat several different cancer types. In this trial, patients with advanced carcinoid tumors that have spread (metastasized) or that cannot be surgically removed (unresectable) will be randomly assigned to receive the drug octreotide acetate along with either bevacizumab or interferon alfa. The combination of octreotide acetate and interferon alfa is often used for refractory carcinoid syndrome, a collection of symptoms - including flushing, abdominal pain, and diarrhea - caused by hormones secreted by advanced carcinoid tumors.
"In our previous phase II study comparing these combinations, the addition of bevacizumab to octreotide acetate led to rapid and sustained decreases in tumor blood flow, resulting in disease stabilization in most patients and even producing partial responses in some patients," said Dr. Yao. "Additionally, patients receiving bevacizumab were more likely to have stable disease at 18 weeks than patients who received interferon.
"With this phase III trial, we hope to confirm these results and possibly establish bevacizumab as a standard therapy for patients with these difficult to treat tumors."
For More Information
An archive of "Featured Clinical Trial" columns is available at http://www.cancer.gov/clinicaltrials/ft-all-featured-trials.