An experimental drug regorafenib slightly extended the lives of colorectal cancer patients who were no longer responding to conventional treatments, a new study has found.
In research presented this week at the American Society of Clinical Oncology's Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium, Bayer HealthCare -- the drug’s maker -- said clinical trials involving 760 patients showed regorafenib treatment extended survival time by 1.4 months.
Bayer issued the preliminary findings in a press release after determining the study showed “a clear benefit” to patients. The trial was stopped in October so that all patients could be offered the drug.
Researchers found some patients experienced adverse effects from the drug, including fatigue, hand-foot-skin reactions, diarrhea, anorexia, voice changes, hypertension, mucositis and rash.
Patients in the study had metastatic colorectal cancer that was progressing after treatment with approved standard therapies. All patients received best supportive care in addition to regorafenib or placebo, Bayer said.
Regorafenib is what’s known as a “multikinase inhibitor” and blocks several processes associated with cancer progression.
Bayer said it planned to submit a marketing application for the drug later this year.
Experts noted that research presented at medical meetings is generally considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.