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A new Option for the Treatment of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma _MPM_

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					A new Option for the Treatment of Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma (MPM)

{PR Newswire via BioPortfolio} LONDON, October 12, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- Raltitrexed (Tomudex(R)) in

combination with cisplatin in the treatmentof MPM improves median overall survival compared to treatment

with cisplatinalone.[1] With incidence rates expected to double over the next 20 years inmany countries[2],

new and effective treatments are a welcome addition,concluded an eminent panel of international speakers at

a symposium sponsoredby Hospira at the 35th congress of the European Society for Medical

Oncology(ESMO), Milan.



  Mesothelioma is a form of cancer that affects the mesothelium, a thinmembrane that lines the inner surface

of the chest wall where it is known asthe pleura. It also surrounds the organs found within this cavity,

forexample the heart and lungs.[3] Speakers at the symposium highlighted thatwhilst MPM - most commonly

caused by exposure to asbestos - is a rare disease(the incidence is estimated to be 1.1-1.25 cases per

100,000 people), itsincidence is expected to double over the next 20 years in many countries.[2]



   Historically MPM has been treated with radiotherapy or surgery, despiteminimal evidence to support these

treatment options and both being associatedwith low success rates.[4,5,6] Speakers highlighted that over

recent years the treatment of MPM has been simplified with the development of chemotherapyregimens as

first-line treatment options.



   Speakers referred to a clinical trial of first-line raltitrexed incombination with cisplatin, which showed that

overall response rates in theraltitrexed group were higher compared to patients treated with cisplatinalone

(23.6% vs. 13.6%; p=0.056).[1] Raltitrexed improved median overallsurvival by 2.8 months compared to

patients treated with cisplatin alone(11.4 vs. 8.8 months; p=0.0483).[1] In addition, raltitrexed was

associatedwith improved progression-free survival (5.3 vs. 4.0 months; p=0.058)compared to treatment with

cisplatin alone.[1]



  "MPM is a hard to treat, rare cancer with a poor prognosis. New treatmentoptions such as a combination of

cisplatin and raltitrexed, which improvepatient outcomes with no detrimental effect on quality of life as

compared tocisplatin alone are a welcome addition to our therapeutic portfolio," saidProfessor JP van


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Meerbeeck, professor of Thoracic Oncology at GhentUniversity, Belgium.



  Treatment of MPM with chemotherapy regimens, including those that arecisplatin-based, is associated with

a high incidence of neutropenia andanaemia. Neutropenia is the most serious haematological toxicity that

occursas a result of cancer chemotherapy and can lead to chemotherapy dosereductions and/or dose delays

compared with the prescribed schedule.[7] Anaemia is associated with fatigue and poor quality of life.

Supportive care to treat neutropenia and anaemia is therefore very important. Hospira has a broad oncology

portfolio including supportive care drugs: Nivestim(TM) (filgrastim) and Retacrit(TM) (epoetin zeta), which are

licensed for the treatment of chemotherapy-induced neutropenia and anaemia respectively.



  Notes to Editors:



  About Tomudex



   Tomudex (Raltitrexed) is currently licensed for the treatment ofmalignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) in

Portugal, Czech Republic and Hungary;further marketing authorisations are expected across Europe late

2010.Mesothelioma is a form of cancer that affects the mesothelium, a thinmembrane that lines the inner

surface of the chest wall where it is known asthe pleura.



  About Nivestim



   Nivestim (filgrastim) was recently approved by the European Commissionfor the reduction in the duration

of neutropenia and incidence of febrileneutropenia in patients undergoing established chemotherapy for

malignancy.Neutropenia is a condition where the number of neutrophils (a type of whiteblood cell) in the

blood is abnormally low. A reduced number of neutrophilsincreases a patient's susceptibility to bacterial and

fungal infections.



  About Retacrit



    Retacrit (epoetin zeta) is indicated for the treatment ofchemotherapy-induced anaemia, and anaemia

associated with chronic renalfailure. Epoetins such as Retacrit, are forms of erythropoietin, a

hormoneproduced by the kidneys which acts within the bone marrow to stimulate redblood cell production.

There are many causes of anaemia, includingchemotherapy treatment for cancer (which indiscriminately



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inhibits allfast-growing cells, including red blood cells), renal failure (which cancause a deficiency in

production of erythropoietin) or a decrease in bonemarrow function. A decrease in red blood cell number or

function may lead toanaemia. Retacrit has been available in Europe since 2008.



  About Hospira



   Hospira is a global specialty pharmaceutical and medication deliverycompany dedicated to Advancing

Wellness(TM). As the world leader in specialtygeneric injectable pharmaceuticals, Hospira offers one of the

broadestportfolios of generic acute-care and oncology injectables, as well asintegrated infusion therapy and

medication management solutions. Through itsproducts, Hospira helps improve the safety, cost and

productivity of patientcare. The company is headquartered in Lake Forest, Illinois, United Statesand has

approximately 13,500 employees. The head office for Hospira inEurope, Middle East and Africa is in

Leamington Spa, UK. Learn more athttp://www.hospira.com.



  References



  1. van Meerbeeck JP, Gaafar R, Manegold C, et al. Randomized phase IIIstudy of cisplatin with or without

raltitrexed in patients with malignantpleural mesothelioma: an intergroup study of the European Organisation

forResearch and Treatment of Cancer Lung Cancer Group and the National CancerInstitute of Canada. J Clin

Oncol. 2005;23(28):6881-9



    2. Stahel RA, Weger W, Lievens Y, Felip E. Malignant pleuralmesothelioma: ESMO Clinical Practice

Guidelines for diagnosis, treatment andfollow-up. Ann Oncol 2010; 21:v126-8



     3. Mesothelioma UK website.http://www.mesothelioma.uk.com/mesothelioma-information-support.htm.

Accessed15 September 2010



    4. Borasio P, et al. Malignant pleural mesothelioma: clinicopathologicand survival characteristics in a

consecutive series of 394 patients. Eur JCardiothorac Surg 2008;33:307-13



   5. Lee C, et al. Prophylactic radiotherapy to intervention sites inmesothelioma: A systematic review and

survey of UK practice. Lung Cancer2009;66:150-6




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    6. Scherpereel P, et al. Guidelines of the European Respiratory Societyand the European Society of

Thoracic Surgeons for the management of malignantpleural mesothelioma. Eur Respir Journal

2010;35:479-495



   7. Crawford J, Dale DC, Lyman GH. Chemotherapy-Induced Neutropenia:Risks, Consequences, and New

Directions for Its Management. Cancer, 2004;100(2): 228-37



  EMEA 10/195 September 2010



         For further information please contact: Hannah Stacey, Athena, +44(0)20-8956-2289 or

+44(0)7984-496-441



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