Preliminary results from a phase II study have shown that a combination of MetMAb, a unique monovalent antibody, with Erlotinib ( Tarceva ) nearly doubled the time people with high MET expressing non-small cell lung cancer ( NSCLC ) lived without their disease getting worse ( progression-free survival or PFS ) compared to placebo plus Erlotinib ( HR=0.560, p=0.0547 ).
The median progression-free survival was improved from 6.4 weeks to 12.4 weeks.
The phase II, randomised, multicentre, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, evaluated the activity and safety of MetMAb plus ERlotinib, versus placebo plus Erlotinib in patients who had received prior treatment for advanced NSCLC. Patients were stratified by the MET receptor expression in their tumour sample using immunohistochemistry ( IHC ), and were categorised as MET-high or MET-low, according to a pre-defined scoring system.
The study also showed that as of the data cut date of June 8, 2010, the addition of MetMAb to Erlotinib in patients whose tumours expressed high MET levels as assessed by IHC ( 50% or more of tumour cells staining at IHC intensity of 2+ or 3+ ) led to an improvement in overall survival compared to placebo plus Erlotinib ( HR=0.549 p=0.1113 ). The median overall survival was improved from 7.4 months to 7.7 months.
MetMAb treatment was generally well tolerated and no unexpected safety signals were observed. The MET-high population represented 54% of the patients enrolled in the study.
Source: 35th European Society for Medical Oncology ( ESMO ) Congress, 2010