Tumor Treating Fields, or TTF, rank among one of the most promising new protocols available for the treatment of malignant mesothelioma. The approach, which uses low-intensity electrical fields applied topically to treat cancer, has been tested on a variety of types of tumors, and particularly on glioblastoma. Now Novocure has released the results of a phase 2 clinical trial that showed that when it is used in combination with the chemotherapy drugs that have been approved for treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma, the result was a significant improvement in both progression-free survival time and in median overall survival.
The results were part of the Stellar phase 2 registration trial, which compares previously recorded results from treating mesothelioma with chemotherapy alone to treating the rare form of cancer using both chemotherapy and the Tumor Treating Fields. The researchers involved in the study gave patients diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma pemetrexed and either cisplatin or carboplatin along with the TTF treatment, and found that their median overall survival got a boost of more than 6 months. They also found that the median progression free survival time for patients receiving the additional TTF treatment expanded by almost two full months as compared to chemotherapy alone, with clinical benefits seen in 97.2 percent of patients. Even more encouraging was the fact that the devices created no serious adverse effects beyond skin irritation, which was reported in 46% of patients.
Speaking of their findings, Stellar trial investigator Dr. Giovanni Ceresoli of Bergamo, Italy’s Humanitas Gavazzeni Hospital said, “The final results of the Stellar trial demonstrate an impressive extension of median overall survival in the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma with no increase in systemic toxicity. Mesothelioma patients face an urgent unmet need for additional therapies that improve survival. Based on these data, I believe Tumor Treating Fields represent an extremely promising therapeutic option that, if approved, should be added to standard of care chemotherapy for the treatment of malignant pleural mesothelioma.” The chief science officer of Novocure, Dr. Eilon Kirson, echoed this comment, saying, “We are extremely pleased by the results of the Stellar trial. We believe the results support the use of Tumor Treating Fields in our first indication outside of the brain. We are now one step closer to commercializing Tumor Treating Fields as a treatment for malignant pleural mesothelioma.”
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with mesothelioma and need information on clinical trials or other resources, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net today at 1-800-692-8608.