- Gemcitabine plus sorafenib versus gemcitabine alone in advanced biliary tract cancer: a double-blind placebo-controlled multicentre phase II AIO study with biomarker and serum programme (2014)
- Background: Since sorafenib has shown activity in different tumour types and gemcitabine regimens improved the outcome for biliary tract cancer (BTC) patients, we evaluated first-line gemcitabine plus sorafenib in a double-blind phase II study. Patients and methods: 102 unresectable or metastatic BTC patients with histologically proven adenocarcinoma of gallbladder or intrahepatic bile ducts, Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) 0–2 were randomised to gemcitabine (1000 mg/m2 once weekly, first 7-weeks + 1-week rest followed by once 3-weeks + 1-week rest) plus sorafenib (400 mg twice daily) or placebo. Treatment continued until progression or unacceptable toxicity. Tumour samples were prospectively stained for sorafenib targets and potential biomarkers. Serum samples (first two cycles) were measured for vascular endothelial growth factors (VEGFs), vascular endothelial growth factor receptor 2 (VEGFR-2) and stromal cell-derived factor 1 (SDF1)α by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA). Results: Gemcitabine plus sorafenib was generally well tolerated. Four and three patients achieved partial responses in the sorafenib and placebo groups, respectively. There was no difference in the primary end-point, median progression-free survival (PFS) for gemcitabine plus sorafenib versus gemcitabine plus placebo (3.0 versus 4.9 months, P = 0.859), and no difference for median overall survival (OS) (8.4 versus 11.2 months, P = 0.775). Patients with liver metastasis after resection of primary BTC survived longer with sorafenib (P = 0.019) compared to placebo. Patients who developed hand-foot syndrome (HFS) showed longer PFS and OS than patients without HFS. Two sorafenib targets, VEGFR-2 and c-kit, were not expressed in BTC samples. VEGFR-3 and Hif1α were associated with lymph node metastases and T stage. Absence of PDGFRβ expression correlated with longer PFS. Conclusion: The addition of sorafenib to gemcitabine did not demonstrate improved efficacy in advanced BTC patients. Biomarker subgroup analysis suggested that some patients might benefit from combined treatment.
- Status and promise of particle interferometry in heavy-ion collisions (2007)
- After five years of running at RHIC, and on the eve of the LHC heavy-ion program, we highlight the status of femtoscopic measurements. We emphasize the role interferometry plays in addressing fundamental questions about the state of matter created in such collisions, and present an enumerated list of measurements, analyses and calculations that are needed to advance the field in the coming years.
- Effect of alirocumab, a monoclonal antibody to PCSK9, on long-term cardiovascular outcomes following acute coronary syndromes: Rationale and design of the ODYSSEY Outcomes trial (2014)
- BACKGROUND: Following acute coronary syndrome (ACS), the risk for future cardiovascular events is high and is related to levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) even within the setting of intensive statin treatment. Proprotein convertase subtilisin/kexin type 9 (PCSK9) regulates LDL receptor expression and circulating levels of LDL-C. Antibodies to PCSK9 can produce substantial and sustained reductions of LDL-C. The ODYSSEY Outcomes trial tests the hypothesis that treatment with alirocumab, a fully human monoclonal antibody to PCSK9, improves cardiovascular outcomes after ACS. DESIGN: This Phase 3 study will randomize approximately 18,000 patients to receive biweekly injections of alirocumab (75-150 mg) or matching placebo beginning 1 to 12 months after an index hospitalization for acute myocardial infarction or unstable angina. Qualifying patients are treated with atorvastatin 40 or 80 mg daily, rosuvastatin 20 or 40 mg daily, or the maximum tolerated and approved dose of one of these agents and fulfill one of the following criteria: LDL-C ≥ 70 mg/dL, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol ≥ 100 mg/dL, or apolipoprotein B ≥ 80 mg/dL. The primary efficacy measure is time to first occurrence of coronary heart disease death, acute myocardial infarction, hospitalization for unstable angina, or ischemic stroke. The trial is expected to continue until 1613 primary end point events have occurred with minimum follow-up of at least 2 years, providing 90% power to detect a 15% hazard reduction. Adverse events of special interest include allergic events and injection site reactions. Interim analyses are planned when approximately 50% and 75% of the targeted number of primary end points have occurred. SUMMARY: ODYSSEY Outcomes will determine whether the addition of the PCSK9 antibody alirocumab to intensive statin therapy reduces cardiovascular morbidity and mortality after ACS.