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Ramucirumab Shows Promise in Care of Advanced Gastric Cancer

Last Updated: October 24, 2017.

Ramucirumab appears to be safe and effective for the treatment of advanced gastric cancer, according to a study published online Sept. 29 in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

TUESDAY, Oct. 24, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Ramucirumab appears to be safe and effective for the treatment of advanced gastric cancer, according to a study published online Sept. 29 in the Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology.

Kei Muro, M.D., from Aichi Cancer Center Hospital in Japan, and colleagues conducted subgroup analyses the REGARD and RAINBOW trials. Both were global, phase 3, randomized, double-blind trials of second-line ramucirumab for metastatic gastric or gastroesophageal junction adenocarcinoma.

The researchers found that the hazard ratios (HRs) for overall survival favored treatment with ramucirumab in the REGARD study: ≤45 years (HR, 0.59; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.27 to 1.26); <65 years (HR, 0.8; 95 percent CI, 0.59 to 1.1); ≥65 years (HR, 0.72; 95 percent CI, 0.48 to 1.08), ≥70 years (HR, 0.73; 95 percent CI, 0.44 to 1.23), and ≥75 years (HR, 0.59; 95 percent CI, 0.25 to 1.37). HRs for overall survival also favored treatment with ramucirumab in the RAINBOW study: ≤45 years (HR, 0.56; 95 percent CI, 0.33 to 0.93), <65 years (HR, 0.78; 95 percent CI, 0.63 to 0.97), ≥65 years (HR, 0.88; 95 percent CI, 0.66 to 1.18), and ≥70 years (HR, 0.88; 95 percent CI, 0.6 to 1.28). The exception was elderly individuals ≥75 years in the RAINBOW trial (HR, 0.97; 95 percent CI, 0.47 to 2.01), through there were only 36 patients in this subgroup. Similar results were seen for progression-free survival. Adverse events, including serious ones, were not associated with age.

"Despite some limitations, these exploratory analyses support the use of ramucirumab in advanced gastric cancer, irrespective of age," conclude the authors.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry, including Eli Lilly and Co., which funded the study.

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