The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) has been awarded a $2.1 million grant from Pfizer to develop a program to scientifically evaluate and define the clinical activity of axitinib in various tumor types.
“The funding not only helps accelerate potentially life-saving research in the field of cancer, but also creates a collaborative opportunity for investigators from NCCN Member Institutions,” said William T. McGivney, PhD, Chief Executive Officer, NCCN. “NCCN is committed to enhancing cancer care by evaluating new investigational agents such as axitinib to determine their full potential in treating several types of cancer.”
The first phase of the program will involve the establishment of an NCCN Axitinib Request for Proposals Development Team to evaluate existing data and to discuss and define the types of studies necessary to further evaluate the activity of axitinib in solid tumors.
Axitinib is an oral and selective inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGF) I, II and III which may play roles in tumor growth, vascular angiogenesis and metastatic progression of cancer. Axitinib has been tested in various phase I, II and III trials including thyroid cancer, non-small cell lung cancer, and advanced renal cell carcinoma. An additional phase II trial in HCC is underway. Pfizer recently announced that the global randomized phase III AXIS 1032 trial (A4061032), studying axitinib in previously treated patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma (mRCC), met its primary endpoint of progression free survival. Axitinib is an investigational compound.
“It is a privilege for us to have the opportunity to collaborate with NCCN on the further evaluation of axitinib,” said Mace Rothenberg, MD, Senior Vice President of Clinical Development and Medical Affairs for Pfizer’s Oncology Business Unit. “Partnerships like this are vitally important in cancer research. By working collaboratively across the scientific community, Pfizer Oncology hopes to add to the broader understanding of new medications and to further our shared goal of improving the outlook for cancer patients worldwide.”
The NCCN Oncology Research Program (ORP) facilitates all phases of clinical research by identifying clinical investigators and initiating trials at NCCN Member Institutions. The ORP draws on the expertise of investigators at 21 of the world’s leading cancer centers and establishes collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies in order to advance therapeutic options for patients with cancer. The ORP will use the grant from Pfizer to support investigator initiated clinical and correlative studies at its NCCN Member Institutions for axitinib. This research grant model has been very successful in moving science forward as evidenced by the many scientific articles published on ORP supported research.
Date: November 30, 2010
Source: National Comprehensive Cancer Network www.nccn.org/index.asp