|Promising safety and efficacy observed in open-label, randomized study
SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 20, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- FibroGen, Inc. (Nasdaq:FGEN) today announced that updated results from an ongoing clinical study of pamrevlumab (FG-3019) in combination with standard-of-care chemotherapy in patients with locally advanced pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) were presented in a poster session during the ASCO 2017 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium in San Francisco. Pamrevlumab is a fully human monoclonal therapeutic antibody that inhibits connective tissue growth factor (CTGF), a common factor in chronic fibrotic and proliferative disorders.
“I am very encouraged by these additional results from this clinical trial of pamrevlumab evaluated in combination with standard-of-care chemotherapy in patients with locally advanced pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma,” said Vincent J. Picozzi, Jr., M.D., Director of the Pancreas Center, Virginia Mason Hospital & Seattle Medical Center, and principal investigator. “Based on our participation in this trial, and a previous clinical study (FGCL- MC3019-028), I believe pamrevlumab has the potential to provide meaningful benefit for pancreatic cancer patients with locally advanced and/or metastatic disease.”
Of the 33 subjects enrolled to date:
- Twenty-two have been randomized to pamrevlumab plus chemotherapy, 10 remain on treatment
- Three discontinued treatment due to complications not related to pamrevlumab, and nine completed treatment
- Seven subjects who completed treatment met protocol defined criteria eligible for tumor resection and were considered operable following treatment. Three subjects had complete tumor removal (R0), and one subject had microscopic tumor remaining after surgery (R1)
- Of the 11 subjects randomized to chemotherapy alone, five subjects discontinued treatment due to various reasons, and six subjects completed treatment
- Of the six subjects who received chemotherapy alone, one subject met protocol defined criteria eligible for tumor resection and had a complete tumor removal (R0)
- Differences in overall survival (OS) between subjects treated with and without pamrevlumab look encouraging
- There were no complications from laparoscopy or biopsies that were clinically significant or delayed dosing, and, to date, there have been no safety imbalances between treatment arms.
In this open-label, randomized study, pamrevlumab in combination with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel is compared to chemotherapy alone for the treatment of patients with locally advanced pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma who have failed resection scoring and were characterized as inoperable assessed by histology, CT scans, and laparoscopy. Subjects are randomized to six cycles of chemotherapy with gemcitabine and nab-paclitaxel, with or without pamrevlumab. The study has enrolled 33 patients, and is targeted to enroll up to 42 subjects.
About Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma and Connective Tissue Growth Factor
Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC), or pancreatic cancer, is the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths in the United States. According to the National Cancer Institute, in 2016, there were approximately 53,000 new cases of pancreatic cancer projected in the United States alone. Pancreatic cancer is aggressive and typically not diagnosed until it is largely incurable. Most patients are diagnosed after the age of 45, and overall five-year survival is about 7%, due to many factors, including advanced stage at diagnosis and limited response to currently available therapies (http://seer.cancer.gov/statfacts/html/pancreas.html). PDAC tumors often exhibit a high degree of desmoplasia, characterized by extensive connective tissue stroma and elevated levels of Connective Tissue Growth Factor (CTGF). Cancer-stroma interactions affect tumorigenesis, angiogenesis, resistance to therapy and metastatic spread of tumor cells. CTGF is overexpressed in PDAC and facilitates local desmoplasia, tumor progression and metastasis in animal models.
Pamrevlumab (FG-3019) is an investigational therapeutic antibody developed by FibroGen to inhibit the activity of CTGF, a common factor in chronic fibrotic and proliferative disorders characterized by persistent and excessive scarring that can lead to organ dysfunction and failure. FibroGen is currently conducting clinical studies of pamrevlumab in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis, pancreatic cancer, and Duchenne muscular dystrophy.
In desmoplastic, or fibrotic, cancers such as pancreatic cancer, CTGF in the extensive fibrous stroma associated with the tumor promotes abnormal proliferation of stromal cells and tumor cells. Studies in a transgenic mouse model of pancreatic cancer indicate that treatment with pamrevlumab in combination with chemotherapy may enhance the efficacy of chemotherapy and improve survival.
About FibroGen, Inc.
FibroGen is a research-based biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery, development, and commercialization of novel therapeutics to treat serious unmet medical needs. The company utilizes its extensive experience in fibrosis and hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF) biology to generate development programs in multiple therapeutic areas. Its most advanced product candidate, roxadustat (FG-4592), is an oral small molecule inhibitor of HIF prolyl hydroxylases (HIF-PHs) in Phase 3 clinical development for the treatment of anemia in CKD. Pamrevlumab (FG-3019), our fully-human monoclonal antibody that inhibits the activity of CTGF, is in Phase 2 clinical development for the treatment of IPF, pancreatic cancer, and DMD. For more information please visit: www.fibrogen.com.
Forward Looking Statements
This release contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding the potential benefit of pamrevlumab (FG-3019) to patients with locally advanced and/or metastatic pancreatic cancer, including a potential survival benefit, the usefulness of tumor biopsies, the benefit of tumor resection, and the potential for continued safety or efficacy in this and other studies. Our actual results may differ materially from these early data and any forward-looking statements due to risks and uncertainties that are described in our Annual Report on Form 10-K and our quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the risk factors set forth therein. Investors are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this release and we undertake no obligation to update any forward-looking statement in this press release, except as required by law.
Karen L. Bergman
Vice President, Investor Relations and