Previous hopes for PARP inhibitors have crashed with the failure of the phase III trial to meet its end points in the treatment of triple negative breast cancer (TNBC).
In the first part of this video Kathy D. Miller, MD, and Lisa A. Carey, MD, discuss the complexity of treating and studying breast cancer, particularly with respect to relying on subtyping (ER, PR, HER2 positive or negative, triple negative). They note that while these three subtypes are the typical references in breast cancer, there are many other subtypes that as yet are not yet widely used but will need to become so with future studies in order to identify how treatment affects individuals with varying degrees of various subtypes.
Although iniparib was thought to work by inhibiting PARP, an enzyme that plays a role in cell regeneration, the Phase III study failed to show expected outcomes demonstrated by the Phase II study. It is not clear whether iniparib may work some way other than by inhibiting PARP, and it looks like researchers will not give up on the drug but will look at other qualities or subtypes of breast cancer toward which they will target the next round of studies.
A randomized phase III study of iniparib (BSI-201) in combination with gemcitabine/carboplatin (G/C) in metastatic triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC). By J. O’Shaughnessy, L. S. Schwartzberg, M. A. Danso, et al. ASCO Oral Abstract Session and J Clin Oncol 29: 2011 (suppl; abstr 1007)
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