Olaratumab in soft tissue sarcoma - Current status and future perspectives.
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Recent randomised phase II trial data have indicated that the addition of olaratumab, a novel monoclonal antibody against platelet-derived growth factor receptor alpha (PDGFRα), to doxorubicin confers an unprecedented improvement in overall survival to patients with anthracycline-naïve advanced soft tissue sarcoma. However, this result was disproportionate with progression-free survival and response rate, and consequently there are unanswered questions regarding the precise mechanism of action of olaratumab. While preclinical data show that olaratumab specifically inhibits PDGFRα-mediated oncogenic signalling with attendant anti-tumour effects, a lack of correlation between pharmacodynamics markers of PDGFRα inhibition and clinical benefit from olaratumab suggest other mechanisms beyond modulation of downstream PDGFRα molecular pathways. Proposed mechanisms of olaratumab activity include engagement of anti-tumour immune responses and alterations of the tumour stroma, but these require further evaluation. Meanwhile, the drug-specific contribution of cytotoxic agents to olaratumab-containing combinations has yet to be characterised. Ongoing and future preclinical and translational studies, coupled with the anticipated results of a phase III trial that has completed enrolment, should provide greater insight into the efficacy and mode of action of olaratumab in soft tissue sarcomas.
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Soft tissue sarcoma
Sarcoma Clinical Trials (R Jones)
License start date
Eur J Cancer, 2018, 92 pp. 33 - 39