New clinical trial at Gibbs to help pancreatic cancer patients

Published on Monday, March 14, 2016

By Jessica Pickens

Spartanburg Regional Health System

Gibbs Cancer Center & Research Institute a division of Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, has been involved in multiple clinical trials.

NewLink Genetics NLG 2104 which adds adding the experimental drug Indoximod, an IDO inhibitor, to standard chemotherapy in the fight against this deadly disease is one clinical trial. Indoximod activates the immune system against pancreas cancer cells potentially improving the efficacy of chemotherapy.

Indoximod is an oral medication that blocks an enzyme called IDO. Studies show that tumors sometimes use the IDO enzyme to escape attack by the body's immune system. Blocking this IDO enzyme may help the body attack tumor cells more effectively.

“Pancreatic cancer is one of the deadliest cancers and progress through research is desperately needed,” said Gibbs oncologist/hematologist, Dr. Caio Rocha Lima. “This research will pave the way to innovation and better outcomes in pancreatic cancer management and survival.”

Physicians at Gibbs look at all possible treatment options from their first meeting with a patient, making clinical trials an option from the very beginning. This allows patients to be enrolled in the clinical trials sooner.

Patients meeting the following criteria are eligible for the NLG 2104 study:

• Confirmed metastasis of pancreatic cancer.

• Initial diagnosis of metastatic disease must have occurred less than or equal to eight weeks prior to entry in the study.

• Life expectancy of greater than three months.

• Patients must have received no previous radiotherapy, surgery, chemotherapy, or investigational therapy for the treatment of metastatic disease.

• Prior treatment with gemcitabine and/or nab-paclitaxel in the adjuvant setting is allowed, provided at least six months have elapsed since completion of the last dose and no lingering toxicities are present. The patient who had surgery to treat the pancreatic cancer followed by gemcitabine and/or nab-paclitaxel chemotherapy could be a potential candidate as long as six months or more have elapsed since completing the last dose of chemotherapy and no lingering side effects remain that were caused by the chemotherapy. 

• Patients who have not received any other immunomodulatory therapies (including vaccines) as treatment for this or any other cancer.

• Patients cannot have any active autoimmune diseases, chronic inflammatory condition, or any condition requiring concurrent use of any systemic immunosupressants or steroids for any reason.

• Patients cannot have known brain metastases.

• Patients cannot have lymph node only metastasis even if considered M1 disease by official staging criteria.

For more information, call Gibbs Cancer Center & Research Institute at 1-855-362-4422.





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