Novocure (NASDAQ: NVCR) announced today that data showing Tumor Treating Fields (TTFields) in combination with paclitaxel is therapeutically effective against ovarian cancer cells in vitro and in vivo has been published by the International Journal of Cancer. This Novocure preclinical research is the first to demonstrate that TTFields in combination with paclitaxel may be a potentially effective strategy for the treatment of ovarian cancer.
In vitro application of TTFields alone to human ovarian cancer cell lines led to significant reductions in cell counts compared to untreated cells. TTFields treatment combined with paclitaxel resulted in additive and even synergistic efficacy depending on the ovarian cell line treated. In vivo, TTFields plus paclitaxel led to a significantly larger anti-tumor effect than either treatment alone.
Novocure also examined the feasibility of local delivery of TTFields to the human abdomen using finite element mesh simulations, a commonly used technique for calculating electric field distribution in complex geometries like the human body. These simulations demonstrated that electric fields intensities inside and in the vicinity of the ovaries are within the range of intensities required for effective treatment with TTFields.
“Treatment with TTFields is broadly applicable and has shown a consistent antimitotic effect in our preclinical and clinical research over the last 16 years,” said Eilon Kirson, Novocure’s Chief Science Officer and Head of Research and Development. “Novocure is committed to increasing the understanding of the mechanisms of action and potential clinical utility of TTFields in multiple solid tumors through the presentation and peer-reviewed publication of high quality data.”
Based on these preclinical results, Novocure initiated the INNOVATE trial, an open-label, phase 2 pilot study of TTFields in combination with weekly paclitaxel for the treatment of recurrent ovarian cancer. The INNOVATE trial is fully enrolled, and Novocure expects to share data at its research and development day on Monday, Dec. 12, 2016.
About Ovarian Cancer
Ovarian cancer is the fifth most common cause of cancer death in women in the United States. The National Cancer Institute estimated that in 2015, there were approximately 21,000 new cases of ovarian cancer diagnosed and approximately 14,000 deaths in the United States. Ovarian cancer incidence increases with age, and the median age at time of diagnosis is 63 years old. The five-year survival rate is 44 percent, and the majority of patients present at advanced stage with 60 percent having metastatic disease. TTFields therapy is not approved for the treatment of ovarian cancer by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The safety and effectiveness of TTFields therapy for ovarian cancer has not been established.
Novocure is a commercial-stage oncology company developing a novel, proprietary therapy called Tumor Treating Fields, or TTFields, for the treatment of solid tumor cancers. Headquartered in Jersey, Novocure has U.S. operations in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, Malvern, Pennsylvania, and New York City. Additionally, the company has offices in Germany, Switzerland and Japan, and a research center in Haifa, Israel. For additional information about the company, please visit www.novocure.com or follow us at www.twitter.com/novocure.
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Last updated on: 01/09/2016
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