It’s not easy be­ing 5th: Pfiz­er and Mer­ck KGaA blue­print a new at­tack on ovar­i­an can­cer

In the rapid pro­lif­er­a­tion of check­point in­hibitor stud­ies, it’s not so easy com­ing up with nov­el tri­al de­signs. But Pfiz­er and Mer­ck KGaA laid claim to an orig­i­nal twist this morn­ing, an­nounc­ing plans to start a Phase III study of their check­point drug avelum­ab with plat­inum-based chemo.

That matchup hasn’t been tried be­fore as a first-line treat­ment.

Ovar­i­an can­cer is just one of the 15 tu­mor types the part­ners are tack­ling cur­rent­ly with avelum­ab. Pfiz­er paid $850 mil­lion up­front to gain col­lab­o­ra­tion rights with Mer­ck KGaA, look­ing to fol­low up on its suc­cess in on­col­o­gy with the re­cent ap­proval of pal­bo­ci­clib.

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