Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck, is the first site in the U.S. to open the Merck trial looking at Pembrolizumab (Keytruda) plus Lenvima (lenvantinib), as a novel combination compared to standard cytotoxic chemotherapy for advanced or recurrent endometrial cancer.
Dr. Maria Schiavone, a gynecologic oncologist and sub-investigator told NJBIZ that the clinical trial is significant.
“For a long time we relied on standard cytotoxic chemo – chemo that has a very broad generalized rapidly dividing self-kill mentality. With some of the newer agents, these immunotherapies are targeted therapies and they are specifically finding things in the body that are specific to the cancer to try and block them to try to focus on affecting the cancer itself without having generalized reactions or generalized involvement,” Schiavone said.
Dr. Sharyn Lewin, director of gynecologic oncology at Holy Name’s Patricia Lynch Cancer Center and principal investigator, said that Holy Name is thrilled to provide patients with access to the most advanced treatments for gynecologic cancers, including the new option that works with patients’ immune systems to find and attack cancer cells. Holy Name is collaborating with Merck in three separate Keytruda clinical trials to compare the safety and effectiveness of the therapy to treat advanced or recurrent endometrial cancer and metastatic cervical cancer. “These progressive collaborations with Merck are part of an expanding roster of clinical studies offered at Holy Name’s Institute for Clinical Research,” said Dr. Ravit Barkama, associate vice president of clinical development. “We focus on collaborating with various pharmaceutical and medical device companies in the U.S. and around the world to bring cutting-edge, safe treatments and technology to our patients. Holy Name’s treatment options match and even surpass those offered at academic medical centers.”