Ongoing Research in Recurrent and Resistant Ovarian Cancer

A relatively large number of phase II and phase III trials that are examining novel strategies in the management of recurrent and resistant ovarian cancer are currently in progress.

Of particular interest are studies exploring the role of antiangiogenesis agents, based on the provocative phase II trial experience with second-line single-agent beva-cizumab in ovarian cancer (objective response rate: 15-20%).36,37 Phase III trials examining the use of this drug in both the primary and second-line settings are ongoing.

The activity of a novel PARP (poly-ADP-ribose polymerase) inhibitor has recently been reported to exceed 20% to 30% in women with recurrent or resistant ovarian cancer who possess a BRCA1 or BRCA2 mutation.38,39 Again, a phase III randomized trial examining this novel compound is in progress.

Other drugs being explored in individual phase III studies in platinum-resistant disease include trabectedin, karenitecin, phenoxodiol, and patupilone. It is hoped that the results of one or more of these ongoing studies will reveal a new management paradigm that will improve both the survival and quality of life for women with recurrent and resistant ovarian cancer.

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