Though people diagnosed with malignant pleural mesothelioma are told at the outset that their condition is both incurable and fatal, that does nothing to stop them from pinning their hopes on innovative medical treatments. Some of those hopes may be fulfilled, as a recent test of a genetically modified virus has proven capable of infecting mesothelioma cells, stimulating their immune system enough to give them several months of progression free survival.
Adenovirus ONCOS-102 Shows Promise in Phase 2 Clinical Trial on Mesothelioma Patients
The adenovirus is ONCOS-102, a treatment for malignant mesothelioma developed by Targovax and currently being tested in a Phase 2 clinical trial. Once the virus enters the cancer’s cells, it produces a protein known as GM-CSF which calls the immune system to action. The current trial is testing for both safety and effectiveness.
All of the mesothelioma patients who are involved in the testing have been diagnosed with unresectable mesothelioma. Eleven out of 31 patients were given only the standard FDA-approved chemotherapy treatment of Alimta (pemetrexed) and cisplatin every twenty-one days. The other twenty also received the Alimta/cisplatin combination but were also given three cycles of ONCOS-102 at intervals of every six weeks. All were called back three times over nine months and checked to see whether their cancer had progressed.
Results of ONCOS-102 Testing Show Best Results with First Line Treatment
The ONCOS-102 mesothelioma testing has been going on since 2018, when its first positive results were reported. The newer data has been consistent with the initial reports, showing approximately 1.6 more months of progression free survival than the chemotherapy treatment alone. The new testing also revealed that patients who were given the ONCOS-102/chemotherapy combination as a first-line treatment saw a slightly higher boost in progression-free survival of 8.9 months as compared to 6.8 months of chemotherapy alone.
In a press release detailing the results, Magnus Jäderberg, chief medical officer of Targovax, said, “We are very pleased to see the encouraging early PFS figures holding up in the 9-month analysis. The data look particularly promising for first line patients.” One year findings are expected to be released shortly.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with malignant mesothelioma and you need information on treatment or enrolling in a clinical trial, contact the Patient Advocates at Mesothelioma.net at 1-800-692-8608.