Roche’s PD-L1 player Tecentriq fails PhIII for ovarian cancer
Roche’s hit-and-miss record on Tecentriq has posted another miss.
The pharma giant reported this morning that the PD-L1 checkpoint failed a Phase III trial for women with advanced, front line ovarian cancer, one of several hard-to-hit cancers that’s defied a variety of approaches. Much of the new R&D in ovarian cancer remains focused on PARP, where AstraZeneca’s Lynparza holds sway.
In this trial Roche combined their PD-L1 Tecentriq with Avastin. But it’s been one of dozens of Phase III trials in the works for the checkpoint crew, as more companies angle to jump into the market behind the two leaders — Merck’s Keytruda and Bristol-Myers Squibb’s Opdivo.
As Merck outlined at the last ASCO, their single-agent Phase II study of Keytruda in treating advanced recurrent epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube, or primary peritoneal cancer showed only modest efficacy — highlighting a history of limited impact. Those monotherapy setbacks inspired new checkpoint combination approaches, where investigators are making slow progress.
“Ovarian cancer remains one of the most aggressive cancers and is difficult to treat in its advanced stages,” said Levi Garraway, the CMO and head of global product development at Roche/Genentech.
Researchers will detail the data at a later scientific conference, after they gain more mature results to examine as they determine how best to advance their work in their gynecological development program.