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OXiGENE, Inc. Message Board

  • bull_inv bull_inv Nov 3, 2003 9:49 AM Flag

    OXiGENE Advances CA4P Into Human Trial

    OXiGENE Advances CA4P Into Human Trial in Newly Diagnosed Cancer Patients

    WALTHAM, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 3, 2003--

    Company's Lead Vascular Targeting Agent
    to be Evaluated in Combination With Chemotherapy and Radiation
    in Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer

    OXiGENE, Inc. (NASDAQ: OXGN, XSSE: OXGN) today announced that, for the first time, its investigational anti-tumor compound will be tested in a clinical trial of newly diagnosed cancer patients whose disease has not yet metastasized.

    OXiGENE's Combretastatin A4 Prodrug (CA4P) will be studied in combination with the chemotherapy drugs doxorubicin/cisplatin and radiation in patients with newly diagnosed anaplastic carcinoma of the thyroid (ATC). Approximately 33 patients are expected to be recruited for this dose-escalating trial, being conducted at Ireland Cancer Center at University Hospitals of Cleveland and Case Western Reserve University. The trial's principal investigator is Scot C. Remick, M.D., professor of medicine and program leader of the Cancer Center's Development Therapeutics Program.

    "This study presents a unique and an exciting opportunity to evaluate our lead Vascular Targeting Agent as an integral component of a first-line therapy for ATC," said Fred Driscoll, OXiGENE's president and chief executive officer. "What makes this trial so significant from our standpoint is that it involves newly diagnosed patients who have not received prior therapy for this disease. In the five other oncology trials in which CA4P is now being studied, the compound is administered only in advanced cancer patients who had failed all conventional therapies."

    In the trial, therapy will be administered in three phases. In the Induction Phase, patients will receive a combination of doxorubicin and cisplatin. That will be followed by a Combined Modality Phase, in which CA4P will be administered in an escalated dose with radiation. In the Consolidation Phase, patients will receive CA4P alone.

    The Ireland Cancer Center also is the site of a current and complementary Phase II single-agent trial of CA4P in advanced anaplastic thyroid cancer. That trial involves patients who failed first-line therapies and whose cancer has advanced regionally and/or metastasized.

    "This new Phase Ib/II trial broadens the available population of prospective trial patients to include those with multiple stages of anaplastic thyroid cancer," said David Chaplin, Ph.D., OXiGENE's chief scientific officer. "We believe that the potential implications are significant. New approaches in cancer treatment focus on combination therapies that work through various mechanisms of action. A large body of pre-clinical data suggests that CA4P has the potential to act synergistically with chemotherapy and radiation. This trial opens the possibility of developing a new standard of care for a disease in which there is no established therapy."

    CA4P attacks the vascular structure of solid tumors and other diseases characterized by the formation of aberrant blood vessels. The compound triggers a change in the shape of endothelial cells lining a tumor's blood vessels. This in turn blocks the flow of blood to the tumor, depriving it of oxygen and nutrients. The compound is a synthetic form of CA4, a natural substance found in the bark of the South African willow tree known as Combretum caffrum.

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