Currently Viewing:
Currently Reading
Patterns of Prescribed Opioid Use After Surgery Linked to Prescription Size, Study Says
November 16, 2018 – Alison Rodriguez
Estrogen Receptor Levels Lead to Discovery of Third Luminal Cell Population
November 16, 2018 – Samantha DiGrande
Shortening Treatment Time Maintains Efficacy, Saves Costs in Hepatitis C
November 16, 2018 – Samantha DiGrande
Genetic Risk Score May be Effective for Predicting Migraine Response to Triptans
November 16, 2018 – Alison Rodriguez
Advocates Lambast Growing Number of Uninsured in Arkansas Due to Work Rules
November 16, 2018 – Allison Inserro
FDA Gives Speedy Approval to Brentuximab for Peripheral T-cell Lymphoma
November 16, 2018 – Allison Inserro
Mutant NPM1 Maintains Leukemic State via HOX Expression in AML
November 16, 2018 – Jackie Syrop
Nivolumab Plus Azacitidine Increased Response Rates in Patients With Relapsed AML
November 16, 2018 – David Bai, PharmD
Following Release From Incarceration, People Living With HIV Have Higher Mortality Rates Than General Population
November 16, 2018 – Jaime Rosenberg

New Immunotherapy Increases Survival Time for Patients With Brain Cancer

Samantha DiGrande
A new immunotherapy referred to as the "Toca regimen" is being investigated in a phase 2/3 randomized, multicenter, open-label trial. 
Tocagen, a cancer-selective gene therapy company, is developing a new immunotherapy for patients with recurrent brain cancer called Toca 511 and Toca FC, referred to as the “Toca regimen.” The investigational products are currently being evaluated in a phase 2/3 randomized, multicenter, open-label trial. 

The trial is being conducted at 68 sites across the United States, Canada, Israel, and South Korea in patients undergoing planned resection for recurrent glioblastoma or anaplastic astrocytoma. Enrollment is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2018. 

After completion of the successful phase 1 study, the Toca regimen showed a favorable safety profile, extended patient survival compared with other therapies, and provided complete tumor shrinkage. 

In this study, patients will be randomized 1:1 to receive either standard of care treatment of single-agent chemotherapy (lomustine or temozolomide) or bevacizumab, or the Toca regimen. If a patient is randomized to the Toca regimen, their treatment will involve 2 parts. In the first step, patients receive vocimagene amiretrorepvec (Toca 511), a replicating virus that selectively infects cancer cells during surgery. The second step requires patients to receive cycles of extended-release 5-fluorocytosine (Toca FC), which is a potent anti-cancer pill that kills cancerous cells while activating immune cells selectively to fight off cancerous ones, leaving healthy cells unharmed. 

“Toca 5 uses a virus to stimulate a patient’s own immune system and attack recurring high-grade gliomas– glioblastoma and anaplastic astrocytoma,” said Yaron Moshel, MD, PhD, neurosurgeon with Atlantic Neurosurgical Specialists and co-director of the Gerald J. Glasser Brain Tumor Center, the principal investigator for the local arm of the study in a statement.

With the current standard of care treatment, newly diagnosed patients have a median survival of approximately 14 to 16 months. After recurrence, this survival time falls to 7 to 9 months, on average. 

Conversely, phase 1 results of the Toca regimen showed a median longevity of 14.4 months for patients with a recurrence. 

“Patients with complete tumor shrinkage are still alive almost 3 years after starting the Toca regimen. These results are encouraging­– for patients, their loved ones, and the medical community– and we look forward to sharing further findings from phase 3 within the next 18 months,” said Moshel in a prepared remark

Related Articles

Early Initiation of Antiretroviral Therapy Can Prevent HIV-Related Brain Damage
Remote Monitoring Can Reduce Radiation-Related Symptoms in Head and Neck Cancer
Opioid Guidelines Putting Pain Management for Patients With Cancer at Risk, Letter Says
Copyright AJMC 2006-2018 Clinical Care Targeted Communications Group, LLC. All Rights Reserved.
Welcome the the new and improved, the premier managed market network. Tell us about yourself so that we can serve you better.
Sign Up

Sign In

Not a member? Sign up now!