Daiichi Sankyo Initiates Phase 2 Study of DS-8201 in Patients with HER2-Expressing Advanced Colorectal Cancer

Daiichi Sankyo Company, Limited have announced that the first patient has been dosed in a global phase 2 study evaluating the safety and efficacy of DS-8201, an investigational HER2-targeting antibody drug conjugate (ADC), in patients with HER2-expressing advanced colorectal cancer who have received at least two prior lines of standard treatment.

An increase in the number of approved targeted therapies for advanced colorectal cancer over the past decade has helped improve outcomes for some patients, however efficacy and tolerability of second and third-line treatments remain limited.

Approximately 3 percent of colorectal cancers overexpress the HER2 protein, which is a well-established therapeutic target in breast and gastric cancer.1 In addition, research indicates that HER2 amplification may be associated with resistance to anti-epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted therapy and shorter survival. Currently, no approved HER2-targeting therapies exist for patients with colorectal cancer.

“Given the existing unmet medical need for advanced colorectal cancer, we are exploring the smart delivery of chemotherapy with DS-8201 as a potential new type of targeted treatment for patients with HER2-expressing disease who have progressed on or become resistant to standard therapies,” said Antoine Yver, MD, MSc, Executive Vice President and Global Head, Oncology Research and Development, Daiichi Sankyo. “Similar to our breast and gastric cancer programs, we are pursuing a development path focused first on patients with HER2-overexpressing tumors followed by potential expansion to include patients with advanced colorectal cancer with lower levels of HER2 expression.”

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