Genentech reports positive clinical results in Avastin trial

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. A late-stage clinical trial of a drug by Genentech indicates that combining it with chemotherapy can fight against ovarian cancer, Genentech announced Thursday.

Genentech, acquired by Roche last year, announced results of a three-arm, placebo-controlled phase 3 trial combining Avastin (bevacizumab) with chemotherapy in women with previously untreated ovarian cancer. The trial found that when women took both drugs, followed by maintenance therapy with Avastin alone, lived longer without the disease worsening than those in the placebo groups.

“Additional medicines are urgently needed for women with newly diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer, as most women’s cancer will worsen after their initial treatment,” Genentech EVP global development and chief medical officer Hal Barron said in a statement.

Genentech plans to present the results at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology in June, the company said.