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Survey: Experts See Delayed Disease Progression as Key Unmet Need in First-Line Treatment of Ovarian Cancer

Olaparib and nintedanib show promise

Decision Resources Group, a health care research firm located in Burlington, Mass., finds that, in addition to an improvement in median overall survival (OS), delayed disease progression is one of the greatest unmet needs in the first-line treatment of advanced ovarian cancer.

Median OS and disease progression are also key factors that shape surveyed U.S. and European oncologists’ treatment decisions in this patient population.

Interviewed thought leaders anticipate that at least two emerging therapies — the poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitor olaparib (AstraZeneca) and the angiogenesis inhibitor nintedanib (Vargatef, Boehringer Ingelheim) — will considerably prolong progression-free survival (PFS) in first-line patients with advanced ovarian cancer. The anticipated improvements in PFS offered by olaparib and nintedanib over the 2013 sales-leading regimen in this patient population — paclitaxel (Taxol, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and generics) plus carboplatin (Paraplatin, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and generics) — match the surveyed U.S. payers’ PFS requirements for widespread inclusion on their managed care organizations’ formularies.

The survey also found that doxorubicin liposome injection (Doxil, Janssen) has the strongest clinical profile among the current and emerging therapies for first-line advanced ovarian cancer. Olaparib, on the other hand, has the most favorable side-effect profile among the emerging therapies because of its lack of additional hematologic and cardiovascular toxicities when combined with a chemotherapy regimen.

Most of the surveyed payers (95%) indicated that they would be willing to reimburse a new therapy that offers a 3- to 9-month improvement in median OS over paclitaxel plus carboplatin, and 90% said they would be willing to reimburse a new therapy that offers a 2- to 6-month benefit over this combination.

Source: Decision Resources Group; June 5, 2014.

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