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Sum of PARPs

How AZ's olaparib combinations may produce large PFS gains in ovarian cancer

Data for olaparib plus cediranib presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting show the ovarian cancer therapies may be able to achieve unprecedented gains in progression-free survival when used in combination. Whether the combination catches on will depend on how well physicians can manage the regimen's increased toxicity over olaparib monotherapy, and whether patients are willing to undergo the higher side effect burden.

In combination, AstraZeneca plc's compounds led to an eight-month PFS benefit over olaparib monotherapy, according to interim data from a 90-patient Phase II trial in women with recurrent platinum-sensitive ovarian cancer. The National Cancer Institute sponsored the study.

Olaparib is a poly(ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitor. Cediranib inhibits VEGF receptor 1 (FLT1; VEGFR-1), VEGFR-2 (KDR/Flk-1) and VEGFR-3 (FLT4).

Jonathan Ledermann, professor of medical oncology at the University College London Cancer Institute and discussant of the trial at last week's ASCO meeting, told attendees the benefit of the combination was

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