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6 Aug 2013

Phase II trial demonstrates effectiveness of rare sarcoma drug

An experimental drug has been found to aid the treatment of advanced alveolar soft part sarcoma

A phase II clinical trial has demonstrated that cediranib may be an effective experimental drug for the treatment of advanced alveolar soft part sarcoma (ASPAS).

Research, published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, explained how 43 patients with metastatic ASPS were administered a daily 30 milligram oral dose of cediranib until they either developed significant side effects or the disease progressed.

The objective response rate was 35 per cent, which is related to a 30 per cent reduction in the size of the tumour being targeted.

Some 15 of patients achieved a partial response, while 60 per cent had stable disease, the US study revealed.

"It's unusual to see such high rates of tumour shrinkage in a cancer that traditionally has not responded to standard chemotherapy treatments used for sarcomas," said Dr Shivaani Kummar, principal investigator on the trial.

ASPS is believed to make up less than one per cent of soft tissue sarcomas, which are cancers that begin in connective and supportive tissue.

The most commonly recommended treatment for the disease is surgical removal of the tumours.

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