AVEO Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVEO) today announced that it has initiated patient enrollment in a multi-center Phase 2 exploratory biomarker study of tivozanib, its lead product candidate designed to optimally block the VEGF pathway by inhibiting all three VEGF receptors, in patients with renal cell carcinoma (RCC).
“We continue to leverage our Human Response Platform™ in our efforts to maximize the clinical potential of our pipeline of oncology therapeutics,” said Murray Robinson, Ph.D., senior vice president, translational medicine at AVEO. “AVEO is committed to advancing the science behind biomarkers and patient treatment approaches. The identification and development of relevant biomarkers is a strategic component of our drug development efforts. We expect to use biomarker data from this study to inform the future design of rational combinations in RCC, as well as in other cancers.”
This multi-center, single-arm Phase 2 study is designed to evaluate biomarkers of tivozanib in approximately 100 patients with RCC who had a prior nephrectomy at 25 sites in the U.S. and Canada. A key primary objective of the study is to evaluate biomarkers in blood and archived tissue samples and their correlation with tivozanib clinical activity and/or drug-related toxicity. For more information, please visit www.clinicaltrials.gov.
Tivozanib, an investigational new drug, is designed to optimally block the VEGF pathway by inhibiting all three VEGF receptors. Each of the three receptors of the VEGF pathway play an important role in angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels), which is critical in cancer cell growth. Tivozanib’s high level of potency across VEGF receptors 1, 2 and 3 is designed to provide the most complete blockade of the VEGF pathway. Tivozanib’s high level of selectivity for VEGF receptors 1, 2 and 3 is designed to minimize off-target toxicities, and its oral, one capsule, once-daily administration may enhance convenience for patients. Tivozanib has also demonstrated the ability to be combined with both targeted therapies and chemotherapies at the full dose and schedule1-3. AVEO is leveraging its Human Response Platform™ in order to enrich outcomes and minimize development risks for tivozanib.
In a large, multi-center, randomized Phase 2 clinical trial, the subset of patients with clear cell renal cell carcinoma (RCC) who had a prior nephrectomy receiving tivozanib therapy achieved 14.8 months progression free survival (PFS), the longest PFS reported for a single-agent therapy in this population4. The safety profile of tivozanib observed in the Phase 2 trial was notable for the minimal off-target toxicities often associated with VEGF, multi-targeted therapies. There was a low incidence of diarrhea, fatigue, stomatitis and hand-foot syndrome. Hypertension and dysphonia (hoarseness of voice), which are mechanism-related side effects associated with angiogenesis inhibitors, were the most commonly reported drug-related side effects, and both were manageable and reversible4. AVEO has completed patient enrollment in TIVO-1, a global, randomized, controlled Phase 3 clinical trial evaluating the efficacy of tivozanib compared to sorafenib (Nexavar®) in this same patient population. AVEO expects to announce top-line data from TIVO-1 in mid-2011.
AVEO Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: AVEO) is a cancer therapeutics company committed to discovering, developing and commercializing targeted therapies to impact patients’ lives. The company’s lead product candidate, tivozanib, is currently being investigated in a global, randomized Phase 3 clinical trial called TIVO-1 comparing tivozanib to sorafenib in patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma, as well as additional clinical studies in other solid tumor types. AVEO’s second most advanced product candidate, AV-299, is a potent, functional anti-HGF/c-MET pathway antibody that is currently in Phase 2 clinical development. AVEO’s proprietary Human Response Platform™ is designed to offer the company a unique advantage in cancer drug development and has provided a discovery engine for multiple therapeutic targets. This approach has resulted in a promising pipeline of monoclonal antibodies against novel targets including HGF, ErbB3, RON, Notch and FGFR. For more information, please visit the company’s website at www.aveopharma.com.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements of AVEO that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, contained in this press release are forward-looking statements. The words “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “predict,” “project,” “target,” “potential,” “will,” “would,” “could,” “should,” “continue,” “contemplate,” or the negative of these terms or other similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these identifying words. These forward-looking statements include, among others, statements about: AVEO’s plans to leverage its Human Response Platform™; AVEO’s expectation regarding the data from the Phase 2 biomarker study; the potential therapeutic advantages and benefits of AV-299; and plans and timelines for AVEO’s ongoing and planned clinical trials. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements that AVEO makes due to a number of important factors, including risks relating to: difficulties, delays and failures in AVEO’s ability to successfully research, develop and obtain and maintain regulatory approvals for tivozanib and AVEO’s other product candidates; the possibility that AVEO will not obtain positive results in its Phase 3 clinical trial of tivozanib and/or that tivozanib will not achieve the regulatory approvals required for its successful commercialization either in the U.S. or abroad; potential delays in data availability from TIVO-1; AVEO’s inability to obtain and maintain adequate protection for intellectual property rights relating to AVEO’s product candidates and technologies; unplanned operating expenses; AVEO’s inability to raise substantial additional funds to achieve AVEO’s goals; adverse general economic and industry conditions; and those risks discussed in “Risk Factors” and elsewhere in AVEO’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended September 30, 2010 and in its other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The forward-looking statements in this press release represent AVEO’s views as of the date of this press release. The company anticipates that subsequent events and development will cause its views to change. However, while it may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, it has no current intention of doing so except to the extent required by applicable law. You should, therefore, not rely on these forward-looking statements as representing AVEO’s views as of any date subsequent to the date of this press release.
1. Kabbinavar FF, et al. Presented at the International Kidney Cancer Symposium; October 1-2, 2010; Chicago, IL.
2. Mayer EL, et al. Poster presented at the SABCS Annual Meeting; December 8-12, 2010; San Antonio, TX.
3. Eskens FALM, et al. Poster presented at the EORTC-NCI-AACR International Symposium on Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics; November 16-19, 2010; Berlin, Germany.
4. Bhargava P, et al. Poster presented at the ASCO Annual Meeting; June 4-8, 2010; Chicago, IL. Abstract 4599. In the tivozanib Phase 2 trial, the intent to treat patient population (n=272) achieved 11.8 months median PFS.
AVEO Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Monique Allaire, 617-299-5810
Caton Lovett, 910-232-7166