Amgen Drug Reduces Tumor
An experimental drug from Amgen Inc that targets a specific genetic mutation reduced tumor size in around half of advanced lung cancer patients, Amgen Inc said in a report.
The Drug is called AMG510. Out of the 13 lung cancer patients taking a 960-mg dose of AMG510, seven had tumors shrink by at least 30%. This data was presented in Barcelona at the World Conference on Lung Cancer. The Lung Cancer was stabilized in the other six high-dose patients.
According to Greg Friberg, head of oncology department at Amgen, Patients who responded to the drug have been treated for 15 weeks, but the median duration of response is yet to be reached.
Nine of the 13, or 69%, are still taking the daily pill. Two of the partial responders have died. Another left the study due to severe cancer progression. One patient with a stable disease also died.
Greg Friberg said one patient previously reported as free of lung cancer is being counted as a partial responder of the treatment. This is because cancer in lymph nodes or other tissue cannot be ruled out completely.
Thirty-four lung cancer patients are enrolled in Phase 1 dose-ranging trial. The clinical trial enrolled patients with tumors carrying the targeted mutation whose cancer had worsened. This was despite several previous treatments, including regular chemotherapy and checkpoint inhibitors.
Of the 23 lung tumor patients so far evaluated at various doses of AMG510 – 11 had tumor shrinkage of at least 30%.
About one-third of trial patients reported mild side effects. More severe side effects, including diarrhea, and anemia, were seen in 9% of patients and no one left the study due to toxicity, Amgen Inc added.
Wall Street has taken a keen interest in the Amgen drug- AMG510. This drug could become the first approved medicine targeting a mutated form of a gene known as KRAS. It is one of the most common mutations found in non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC).
According to the American Cancer Society, NSCLC accounts for up to 85% of lung cancers. This is by far the leading cause of cancer death among men and women.
Amgen’s AMG510 is part of a growing trend of precision medicines. Precision medicines target gene mutations driving cancer. It targets the gene mutation regardless of the organ in which the disease originated.
The targeted mutation, KRASG12C, occurs in around 13% of NSCLC cases. It also includes 3-5% of colorectal cancers and up to 2% of other solid tumor cancers, including pancreatic.
Amgen said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted “fast track” status to the tumor reducing drug- AMG510 for previously treated NSCLC with KRASG12C mutation.