Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Lenvatinib trial offers hope for thyroid cancer patients

Lenvatinib skeletal.svg
A new targeted therapy called lenvatinib has been shown to improve progression-free survival among patients with advanced thyroid cancer that is not responsive to iodine-131.

In a clinical trial of almost 400 patients from 21 different countries, patients who took lenvatinib survived for a median of 18.3 months without displaying any signs of disease progression, while those who were given placebo only had a median progression-free survival of 3.6 months.

"The median progression-free survival in the placebo group in this study was shorter than the 8 months expected, indicating that these patients had aggressive thyroid cancer," write the authors of the study, which was published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Given the results of this trial, lenvatinib may become the standard treatment for patients resistant to idoine-131, says lead author Martin Schlumberger from the Department of Nuclear Medicine and Endocrine Oncology at Gustave Roussy in France.

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