PRIMA vs PAOLA: GSK and Merck/AstraZeneca square off in a high-profile PARP showdown at ESMO
BARCELONA — Among the many important high-profile showdowns at ESMO this year, few will be as closely watched as the PARP rivalry between the dominant team at AstraZeneca/Merck and the feisty underdogs at GlaxoSmithKline. And it proved to be the hardest to call, with two significantly different late-stage trials reporting out for frontline ovarian cancer.
In recent days we got a chance to examine both sides, and the only inescapable conclusion anyone could reach is that the standard of care in this field is undergoing a major change for the better. Picking a winner, though, won’t be so easy.
AstraZeneca and Merck chose to see how a combination of the leading drug, Lynparza, worked with Avastin in treating firstline maintenance cases. For GlaxoSmithKline, ESMO offered a chance for R&D chief Hal Barron to make his case for positive Phase III data for Zejula, which they acquired in their $5 billion Tesaro buyout.
GSK’s bottom line for their PRIMA study:
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