Memorial Sloan Kettering Study Shows Targeted Therapy for Advanced Sarcoma Extends Survival by Nearly a Year

Friday, June 10, 2016

A new drug is being shown to extend the lives of patients with advanced soft tissue sarcoma by almost a year. The results of a multicenter phase II trial evaluating the efficacy and safety of olaratumab in combination with doxorubicin chemotherapy was published in The Lancet on June 9. William Tap, MD, Chief of the Sarcoma Medical Oncology Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center (MSK), served as corresponding author on this study, which met its primary endpoint of progression-free survival and showed a statistically significant improvement in overall survival. Based on this trial, the FDA has granted olaratumab Breakthrough Therapy status.

Soft tissue sarcoma is a rare disease with limited treatment options. These findings are particularly notable given the limited progress in improving median overall survival in patients with advanced soft tissue sarcoma. Currently, an international phase III trial is under way with MSK serving as the lead center and Dr. Tap as the principal investigator. To arrange an interview with Dr. Tap, please email