An experimental drug helps some patients whose lung cancer has spread to the brain

An experimental drug produced by Mirati Therapeutics, which targets a specific genetic mutation, has helped in a clinical study about a third of a small group of patients whose lung cancer had spread to the brain, the American oncology company announced on Monday , informs Reuters.

Preliminary data showed that of the 19 patients treated with Adagrasib, three had a complete withdrawal of central nervous system metastases and three others had a partial reduction in tumors, Mirati Therapeutics officials said before an official presentation in Chicago. at the annual conference organized by the American Society of Clinical Oncology.

After an average monitoring period of 6.6 months, another 10 patients achieved a stabilization of brain metastases, the American company said.

However, severe side effects occurred in 36% of patients receiving Adagrasib.

This oral medicine is designed to target a mutant form of the KRAS gene that is detected in about 13% of non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC), the most common type of lung cancer.

“About a third of patients” with KRAS mutant lung cancer develop brain metastases, Mirati Therapeutics CEO David Meek said in an interview.

These patients have an average life expectancy of about five months, according to Joshua Sabari, a researcher involved in this clinical trial and oncologist at the Langone Perlmutter Cancer Center at New York University.

Mirati Therapeutics announced last week that the overall results of the clinical trial show that Adagrasib has reduced tumors in 43% of the 112 patients in the study who were diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. However, the drug also induced serious side effects, such as hepatotoxicity and anemia, in 46% of patients, which led to a decrease in the value of the company’s shares.

Investors wanted to know how well Mirata Therapeutics is doing with the first KRAS mutation-based cancer drug, called Lumakras, developed by Amgen Inc., which was approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last year.

These two drugs are part of a broader trend of medical treatments targeting specific genetic mutations that are responsible for cancer, regardless of the organ in which the disease first appears.

The FDA is expected to take the decision to authorize the drug produced by Mirati Therapeutics for advanced forms by the NSCLC by mid-December this year, Reuters was quoted as saying by Agerpres.

The American company, headquartered in California, is also testing Adagrasib as an initial treatment for NSCLC, both alone and in combination with the immunotherapeutic drug Keytruda, developed by Merck Pharmaceutical Group.

Editor: Liviu Cojan

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