- Global Pharma News & Resources

Sub-Group Analysis of Novocure’s EF-14 Phase 3 Pivotal Trial in Newly Diagnosed Glioblastoma Published in Journal of Neuro-Oncology Demonstrating More Time on Optune® Predicted Increased Survival

Novocure (NASDAQ:NVCR) announced today that the results of a retrospective post-hoc sub-group analysis of its EF-14 phase 3 pivotal trial in newly diagnosed glioblastoma (GBM) have been published in the Journal of Neuro-Oncology. The analysis demonstrated that more time on Optune predicted increased survival in patients who received Optune plus temozolomide compared to patients who received temozolomide alone. Optune is a noninvasive, portable medical device that delivers Tumor Treating Fields to people with GBM. Tumor Treating Fields is a cancer therapy that uses electric fields tuned to specific frequencies to disrupt cell division, inhibiting tumor growth and causing certain cancer cells to die.

“The total amount of time the device is worn, also known as monthly Optune usage – or treatment compliance – matters greatly for patients with GBM, one of the most aggressive forms of cancer,” said Steven A. Toms, MD, Professor of Neurosurgery and Medicine, and Vice Chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at Lifespan Health System, and the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, and author of the article. “Optune plus temozolomide has proven to provide long-term quality survival to patients with newly diagnosed GBM. Therefore, the importance of monthly Optune usage should be reinforced with patients by their health care providers.”

Data from this sub-group analysis demonstrated that patients using Optune 50 percent or more of the time had a survival benefit compared to those who used temozolomide alone (n=388/450, OS HR 0.67, 95% CI 0.45–0.99). Patients who used Optune more than 90 percent of the time experienced a median overall survival of 24.9 months (n=43; OS HR 0.52, 95 percent CI 0.35–0.79) and a predicted 5-year survival rate of 29.3 percent versus a median overall survival of 16.0 months and a predicted 5-year survival rate of 4.5 percent for patients who used temozolomide alone. Monthly usage was a predictor of survival, independent of other prognostic factors such as Karnofsky Performance Status, age or MGMT methylation status.

Novocure’s phase 3 pivotal EF-14 trial compared Optune in combination with temozolomide to temozolomide alone in a total of 695 patients with newly diagnosed GBM. The trial was designed to test both progression free survival and overall survival. The trial demonstrated unprecedented five-year survival results in newly diagnosed GBM for those patients treated with Optune in combination with temozolomide. Those patients experienced an extension of overall survival without added systemic toxicity compared to patients treated with temozolomide alone. The data also showed that Optune-treated patients were able to maintain their mental, emotional and physical well-being longer than those treated with temozolomide alone, as measured for up to one year.

About Novocure

Novocure is an oncology company developing a profoundly different cancer treatment utilizing a proprietary therapy called Tumor Treating Fields, the use of electric fields tuned to specific frequencies to disrupt solid tumor cancer cell division. Novocure’s commercialized product is approved for the treatment of adult patients with glioblastoma. Novocure has ongoing or completed clinical trials investigating Tumor Treating Fields in brain metastases, non-small cell lung cancer, pancreatic cancer, ovarian cancer, liver cancer and mesothelioma.

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, Japan and Israel. For additional information about the company, please visit or follow us at

Approved Indications

Optune is intended as a treatment for adult patients (22 years of age or older) with histologically-confirmed glioblastoma multiforme (GBM).

Optune with temozolomide is indicated for the treatment of adult patients with newly diagnosed, supratentorial glioblastoma following maximal debulking surgery and completion of radiation therapy together with concomitant standard of care chemotherapy.

For the treatment of recurrent GBM, Optune is indicated following histologically-or radiologically-confirmed recurrence in the supratentorial region of the brain after receiving chemotherapy. The device is intended to be used as a monotherapy, and is intended as an alternative to standard medical therapy for GBM after surgical and radiation options have been exhausted.

Patients should only use Optune under the supervision of a physician properly trained in use of the device. Full prescribing information is available at or by calling toll free 1-855-281-9301.

Important Safety Information

Contraindications: Do not use Optune if you have an active implanted medical device, a skull defect (such as, missing bone with no replacement), or bullet fragments. Use of Optune together with implanted electronic devices has not been tested and may theoretically lead to malfunctioning of the implanted device. Use of Optune together with skull defects or bullet fragments has not been tested and may possibly lead to tissue damage or render Optune ineffective.

Do not use Optune if you are known to be sensitive to conductive hydrogels. In this case, skin contact with the gel used with Optune may commonly cause increased redness and itching, and rarely may even lead to severe allergic reactions such as shock and respiratory failure.

Warnings and Precautions: Use Optune only after receiving training from qualified personnel, such as your doctor, a nurse, or other medical personnel who have completed a training course given by Novocure (the device manufacturer).

Do not use Optune if you are pregnant, you think you might be pregnant or are trying to get pregnant. It is not known if Optune is safe or effective in these populations.

The most common (≥10%) adverse events involving Optune in combination with temozolomide were low blood platelet count, nausea, constipation, vomiting, fatigue, scalp irritation from device use, headache, convulsions, and depression.

The most common (≥10%) adverse events seen when using Optune alone were scalp irritation from device use and headache.

The following adverse reactions were considered related to Optune when using the device alone: scalp irritation from device use, headache, malaise, muscle twitching, fall and skin ulcer.

All servicing procedures must be performed by qualified and trained personnel.

Do not use any parts that do not come with the Optune Treatment Kit, or that were not sent to you by the device manufacturer or given to you by your doctor.

Do not wet the device or transducer arrays.

If you have an underlying serious skin condition on the scalp, discuss with your doctor whether this may prevent or temporarily interfere with Optune treatment.

Please see to see the Optune Instructions For Use (IFU) for complete information regarding the device’s indications, contraindications, warnings, and precautions.

Patients should only use Optune under the supervision of a physician properly trained in use of the device.

Forward-Looking Statements

In addition to historical facts or statements of current condition, this press release may contain forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements provide Novocure’s current expectations or forecasts of future events. These may include statements regarding anticipated scientific progress on its research programs, clinical trial progress, development of potential products, interpretation of clinical results, prospects for regulatory submission and approval, manufacturing development and capabilities, market prospects for its products, coverage, collections from third-party payers and other statements regarding matters that are not historical facts. You may identify some of these forward-looking statements by the use of words in the statements such as “anticipate,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project,” “intend,” “plan,” “believe” or other words and terms of similar meaning. Novocure’s performance and financial results could differ materially from those reflected in these forward-looking statements due to general financial, economic, regulatory and political conditions as well as more specific risks and uncertainties facing Novocure such as those set forth in its Annual Report on Form 10-K filed on February 22, 2018, with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Given these risks and uncertainties, any or all of these forward-looking statements may prove to be incorrect. Therefore, you should not rely on any such factors or forward-looking statements. Furthermore, Novocure does not intend to update publicly any forward-looking statement, except as required by law. Any forward-looking statements herein speak only as of the date hereof. The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 permits this discussion.

View source version on

Editor Details

  • Company:
    • Business Wire
  • Website:
Last Updated: 06-Dec-2018