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Searching for Improved Options for Brain Cancer Patients with Short Life Expectancy Seattle, Wash.— April 12, 2005 — Virginia Mason Medical Center is one of more than 50 clinical trial sites around the world that is studying whether a novel drug-delivery approach that attacks only cancerous cells in the brain may provide treatment to extend the lives of people with the most common and aggressive form of primary brain tumors – Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM). Virginia Mason is the only Washington clinical trial location in the large, international study that includes sites in Europe and Israel. The PRECISE trial will enroll approximately 300 patients with late stage brain cancer to test NeoPharm’s investigational drug IL13-PE38QQR, as an agent to target this type of tumor. Combining surgery with postoperative treatment is a novel approach. The clinical trial will use a new delivery method where the study drug is placed directly into the brain cavity left after removal of the cancer mass. This technique is an attempt to bypass the blood brain barrier that up until now has rendered standard drug delivery methods ineffective. “This is an exciting new alternative for patients who otherwise did not have many options before now. We are very hopeful that this trial will yield another treatment for people who are combating brain cancer (glioblastomas),” noted Principal Investigator and Neuro-Oncologist Lynne P. Taylor, MD. This phase III study is designed to look at the effect of this drug administered through catheters into the brains of patients experiencing their first recurrence of brain cancer. Two out of three patients will receive the Study Drug (IL13-PE38QQR). One out of three patients will receive the GLIADEL® Wafer. Glioblastoma Multiforme is a form of brain cancer that is highly malignant and occurs quite commonly in patients 50-80 years of age. Because brain cancer affects both men and women, sometimes at a young age, the trial will enroll patients aged 18 and older. “I see many brain tumor patients in my practice. With brain cancer affecting over 17,000 newly diagnosed people per year in the U.S. we are focused on finding more options for patients,” continued Dr. Taylor. Individuals interested in participating in this study may call (206) 341-0314. Participants must be 18 years of age and have a diagnosis of first recurrent Glioblastoma Multiforme. The tumor must have recurred after surgical removal, with radiation and chemotherapy used to treat the initial tumor. The Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason conducts approximately 200 clinical trials per year. The Clinical Trials Unit conducts more than 40 clinical trials per year. The PRECISE is one of three studies focused on brain cancer currently underway. Virginia Mason Medical Center’s Neurology and Neurosurgical physicians will be closely participating and following the PRECISE trial. About Virginia Mason Virginia Mason Medical Center, founded in 1920, is a non-profit comprehensive regional health care system that combines a primary and specialty care group practice of nearly 400 physicians with a 336-bed acute care Seattle hospital. In addition, Virginia Mason has a network of clinics located throughout the Puget Sound area, a world-class research center, and manages Bailey-Boushay House, a nursing residence and adult day health program for people living with HIV and AIDS. Virginia Mason also has the Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason, a research center that conducts approximately 150 clinical studies every year. About NeoPharm NeoPharm, Inc., based in Lake Forest Ill., is a publicly traded biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the research, development and commercialization of new and innovative cancer drugs for therapeutic applications. ###
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