UCSF Seeks Patients for Lung Cancer Therapy

July 08, 1998
News Office: Alice Trinkle, Abby Sinnott (415) 885-7277

Researchers at the UCSF Cancer Center are recruiting patients with advanced lung cancer for a clinical trial of a novel drug they hope will inhibit the growth of blood vessels that nourish tumor cells.

The drug, developed by Genentech Inc., is a protein known as an antibody that represses a growth factor called VEGF, or vascular endothelial cell growth factor. This therapy has been shown to inhibit the growth of cancer cells in animal laboratory studies.

The antibody to VEGF, called rhuMAb VEGF, belongs to a class of drugs known as anti-angiogenesis therapies that are intended to block the growth of blood vessels in and around tumor cells, thereby starving the tumor by cutting off its supply of nutrients and oxygen.