Cancer researchers in London, England, said they had successfully tested a new drug that could provide hope for a small group of advanced cancer patients.
They say this new drug has a way of working to attack tumor cells from within.
The drug known as TV (Tisitumab Vedotin) has been tested on nearly 150 people whose cancer is drug resistant.
TV has proven effective for up to six months, on average.
The situation of more than a quarter of patients with uterine cancer and bladder is improving. Other types including colon and pancreatic cancer will be included in the test.
“We have seen great progress in overcoming cancer in the past few decades, but many types of tumors remain difficult to deal with once the cancer spreads,” said Professor Paul Workman, head of the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR), London.
The researchers also tested a number of parameters to find out which patients were most likely to respond to the drug
TV is associated with antibodies which are then targeted at a receptor called tissue factor, a high level found on the surface of most cancer cells.
The drug can then enter the cell and destroy it.
The drug tested in advanced cancer patients and has been immune to the standard treatment, shows a number of tumors shrink or stop growing.
“The amazing thing about this treatment is that the mechanism of action is entirely new – because it acts like a Trojan Horse that enters cancer cells and kills it from the inside,” lead author Professor Johann de Bono said in a study led by an ICR team and the Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust.
“A preliminary study shows the possibility that this drug can be used to treat many different types of cancer, and especially in some types where the life expectancy of sufferers is very low,” he said.