Scottsdale Healthcare, TGen physicians lead worldwide study of new drug regimen for patients with pancreatic cancer

   Scottsdale Healthcare, TGen physicians lead worldwide study of new drug
                 regimen for patients with pancreatic cancer

PR Newswire

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., Nov. 16, 2012

Phase III study results show improvement in overall survival compared to
standard treatment

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz., Nov. 16, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --A new cancer drug
combination demonstrated significant improvement in overall survival of
late-stage pancreatic cancer patients compared to those receiving standard
treatment, according to results of a Phase III clinical trial led by
physicians from Scottsdale Healthcare's Virginia G. Cancer Center Clinical
Trials, a partnership with the Translational Genomics Research Institute
(TGen).

Physicians at the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare
were first to design a clinical trial to determine the safety, tolerability
and effectiveness of nab-paclitaxel (Abraxane) in combination with the
standard drug gemcitabine in patients with advanced pancreatic cancer. Results
of that multicenter study chaired by Dr. Daniel Von Hoff were encouraging
enough that it led to one of the largest international studies ever done in
pancreatic cancer, with 861 patients. Full results are expected to be
presented at the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2013
Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium in Jan. 24-26 in San Francisco.

"This is a great example of rapid bench to bedside development of new
treatments for cancer. We're ecstatic that we will have a new treatment for
patients with late stage pancreatic cancer," said Dr. Von Hoff, international
lead investigator and Chief Scientific Officer for the Virginia G. Cancer
Center Clinical Trials at Scottsdale Healthcare and TGen's Physician-In-Chief.

The pancreas is a gland behind the stomach that secretes enzymes into the
upper part of the small intestine to help digestion. It also produces
hormones, including insulin, which helps regulate the metabolism of sugars.
Advanced pancreatic cancer is fourth most common cause of cancer death in the
United States and throughout the world. It is a difficult to diagnose and
treat cancer with the lowest survival rates among all cancer types.

Nab-paclitaxel (Abraxane) is an albumin-bound formulation of paclitaxel,
produced by Celgene Corp. Dr. Von Hoff said that results of the MPACT
(Metastatic Pancreatic Adenocarcinoma Clinical Trial) study will lead Celgene
to submit for FDA approval.

"Pancreatic cancer incidence is increasing worldwide with almost 220,000 cases
per year, and we are optimistic that this will have worldwide impact for
treating advanced pancreatic cancer," added Ramesh Ramanathan, MD, Medical
Director of Virginia G. Cancer Center Clinical Trials at Scottsdale Healthcare
and principal investigator for the United States.

Dr. Von Hoff credited the support of Scottsdale Healthcare Foundation, Stand
Up to Cancer and the Seena Magowitz Foundation for advancing the study at the
Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare. He noted that TGen
and International Genomics Consortium scientists in collaboration with
scientists from Abraxis Bioscience found that in pancreatic cancer, an
albumin-binding protein called SPARC was present at high levels in cells
within the pancreatic tumor microenvironment. They hypothesized that the
albumin formulation of nab-paclitaxel may be taken up by tumor and surrounding
cells with high SPARC expression.

Individuals seeking information about eligibility to participate in clinical
trials at the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare may
contact the cancer care coordinator at 480-323-1339; toll free at
1-877-273-3713 or via email at clinicaltrials@shc.org.

About the Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare
The Virginia G. Piper Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare in Scottsdale,
Ariz. offers comprehensive cancer treatment and research through clinical
trials, diagnosis, treatment, prevention and support services in collaboration
with leading scientific researchers and community oncologists. Scottsdale
Healthcare is the nonprofit parent organization of the Virginia G. Piper
Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare, Scottsdale Healthcare Research
Institute, Scottsdale Healthcare Osborn Medical Center, Scottsdale Healthcare
Shea Medical Center and Scottsdale Healthcare Thompson Peak Hospital. For more
information, visit www.shc.org.

About TGen
The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a Phoenix,
Arizona-based non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking
research with life changing results. Research at TGen is focused on helping
patients with diseases such as cancer, neurological disorders and diabetes.
TGen is on the cutting edge of translational research where investigators are
able to unravel the genetic components of common and complex diseases. Working
with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities, TGen believes it
can make a substantial contribution to the efficiency and effectiveness of the
translational process. For more information, visit: www.tgen.org.

SOURCE Scottsdale Healthcare

Website: http://www.shc.org
Contact: Steve Yozwiak, TGen Senior Science Writer, +1-602-343-8704,
syozwiak@tgen.org, Keith Jones, Public Relations Director, Virginia G. Piper
Cancer Center at Scottsdale Healthcare, +1-480-323-1383, kjones@shc.org
 
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