Most non-small cell lung cancers (NSCLC) with EGFR mutations treated with the standard therapy erlotinib (a drug used that blocks EGFR) eventually come back or continue to grow despite this treatment. Researchers want to find out if adding the drug ruxolitinib to erlotinib therapy might make treatment more effective.
Ruxolitinib is a pill that is approved for the treatment of myelofibrosis (scarring of the bone marrow); its use in this study is considered investigational. It works by inhibiting a protein called JAK that may be increased when tumors become resistant to erlotinib. Laboratory studies suggest that giving ruxolitinib with erlotinib helps erlotinib work better.
Ruxolitinib and erlotinib are both taken orally (by mouth).