Pertuzumab/trastuzumab (fixed-dose combination (FDC) in addition to chemotherapy is in clinical development as a subcutaneous formulation (SC) for the adjuvant treatment of adults with the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2) positive early and metastatic breast cancer. HER2 positive breast cancer is a subtype in which the HER2 receptor is over expressed on the cell surface. HER2 promotes the growth of cancer cells and this breast cancer subtype tends to be more aggressive than other types. Metastatic breast cancer is when cancer has spread beyond the breast and nearby lymph nodes to other organs in the body. Treatment of the disease often involves the use of anti-HER2 therapies, chemotherapy or a combination of both.
Pertuzumab, is a monoclonal antibody, a type of protein that attaches to HER2 and activates the immune system (the body’s natural defences) which result in growth arrest and death of cancer cells. Trastuzumab is a monoclonal antibody that attaches to the HER2 protein and activates cells of the immune system which results in growth inhibition and death of cancer cells. Pertuzumab provides additional benefits when added to other medicines for HER-positive cancer, notably trastuzumab. Pertuzumab in combination with trastuzumab and chemotherapy is a treatment option for HER2-positive early and metastatic breast cancer as either in subcutaneous (SC) or intravenous (IV) formulation. However, pertuzumab and trastuzumab in a FDC with chemotherapy given subcutaneously will offer a new formulation for patients with HER2-positive early and metastatic breast cancer.
Selpercatinib is in clinical development for the treatment of metastatic RET fusion-positive non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). NSCLC is the most common type of lung cancer and at the metastatic stage the disease has already spread from the lungs to other sites. Around 2% of these patients will have tumours that contain fusion mutations in the RET gene. Cells in these tumour produce altered RET signalling receptors that allow uncontrolled cancer growth. Currently the only treatment options that attempt to inhibit RET fusion-positive tumour activity are nonselective multikinase inhibitors.