Roche‘s subsidiary Genentech joined forces with NASDAQ-listed Clovis Oncology to evaluate a novel combination therapy for the treatment of advanced EGFR-mutant non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). Its anti PD-L1 cancer immunotherapy and Clovis’ rociletinib will enter Phase Ib/II in 2015.
With 1.35 million new cases annually, lung cancer is the most common cancer worldwide. In 85% of the cases, the lung cancer is known as a non-small cell lung cancer. A part of the patients (between 10 and 30% depending on the region) have a mutation that activates the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). This increases the proliferation of the cancer cells. Several EGFR-inhibitors showing good tumor responses are on the market, but most patients are getting resistant to a second mutation.
This mutation, for which there is currently no treatment, is targeted by Clovis’ rociletinib. Standing alone is received breakthrough designation from the FDA. Clovis submitted market authoritzation application both to FDA and EMA earlier this months.
However, the drug may be even more effective in combination.