In a Phase II clinical trial, second-line treatment with a combination of chemotherapy and the investigational drug ganetespib improved overall survival among patients with advanced lung adenocarcinoma. These results were presented at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
Adenocarcinoma of the lung is the most common type of lung cancer. Smoking is the major risk factor for lung adenocarcinoma, but this is also the most common type of lung cancer found in people who have never smoked.
Ganetespib is an investigational drug that targets a protein known as heat shock protein (Hsp) 90. Hsp90 is necessary for the function of several other proteins that are known to play an important role in lung cancer.
To assess ganetespib for the treatment of advanced lung adenocarcinoma, researchers conducted a Phase II clinical trial (the GALAXY-1 trial). The study enrolled 252 patients with Stage IV cancer that had worsened in spite of standard chemotherapy. Patients were treated with the chemotherapy drug docetaxel alone or in combination with ganetespib.
- The addition of ganetespib improved overall survival. Overall survival was 7.4 months among patients treated with docetaxel alone and 9.8 months among patients treated with docetaxel plus ganetespib.
- The addition of ganetespib was particularly beneficial for patients who had been diagnosed with metastatic lung cancer at least six months before the start of the study. In this subgroup, overall survival was 6.4 months among patients treated with docetaxel alone and 10.7 months among patients treated with docetaxel plus ganetespib.
These results suggest that ganetespib may improve outcomes for patients with advanced lung adenocarcinoma. If these results are confirmed in an ongoing Phase III clinical trial, ganetespib could provide a new treatment option for patients with this type of lung cancer.
Reference: Ramalingam SS, Goss GD, Andric ZG et al. A randomized study of ganetespib, a heat shock protein 90 inhibitor, in combination with docetaxel versus docetaxel alone for second-line therapy of lung adenocarcinoma (GALAXY-1). Presented at the 49th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. May 31-June 4, 2013; Chicago, IL. Abstract CRA8007.