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Holy Cross Hospital Participates In Pioneering Lung Cancer Research

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In collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center

Approximately 87 percent of all lung cancers are non-small cell (NSCLC), a disease in which malignant cells form in the tissues of the lung. Despite medical advances, the five year survival rate for patients diagnosed in any stage of NSCLC is just 15 percent and only two percent for those patients whose disease has metastasized and spread outside the lung.

Holy Cross Hospital, which is working with Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center in Boston to expand oncology services to South Florida residents, is sponsoring a clinical trial for patients with NSCLC using the investigational medication Belinostat (PDX101). Belinostat belongs to a group of anti-cancer medications called histone deacetylase (HDAC) inhibitors. This medication is believed to target HDAC enzymes, thereby slowing tumor cell growth, promoting cellular differentiation, and inhibiting angiogenesis. This investigational medication is also believed to possibly sensitize drug-resistant tumor cells to other agents such as chemotherapy, potentially increasing their effect.

The FDA has granted Orphan Drug status for belinostat for the treatment of peripheral T-cell lymphoma. However, the use of this medication for the indication of NSCLC is considered investigational.

The clinical trial “A Phase Ib/II Study to Determine the Recommended Dose of Belinostat (PDX101) and the Safety And Preliminary Efficacy Of Belinostat when used in Combination with Carboplatin, Paclitaxel and Bevacizumab in Patients with Untreated Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer” continues to enroll. Eligible patients are those who have a proven diagnosis of advanced (Stage IV) NSCLC not previously treated with any chemotherapy regimen. Patients accepted into the study will receive the investigational medication with standard of care chemotherapy on an outpatient basis.

The Michael & Dianne Bienes Comprehensive Cancer Center, through its collaboration with Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, offers disease-specific care in all oncology sub-specialties including medical, surgical and radiation oncology. The Cancer Center also offers research trials that span from early drug development through the later Phase 4 stages for multiple types of cancer.

Those interested in enrolling in the study or learning more should call the Michael and Dianne Bienes Comprehensive Cancer Center research office at 954-267-7750 or visit cancer.holy-cross.com.

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