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Rucaparib: a novel PARP inhibitor for BRCA advanced ovarian cancer

Authors Colombo I, Lheureux S, Oza AM

Received 30 November 2017

Accepted for publication 17 January 2018

Published 21 March 2018 Volume 2018:12 Pages 605—617


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Qiongyu Guo

Ilaria Colombo, Stephanie Lheureux, Amit Manulal Oza

Division of Medical Oncology and Hematology, Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, Toronto, ON, Canada

Abstract: Rucaparib is a potent small-molecule inhibitor of poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) proteins (PARP-1, PARP-2 and PARP-3) that play an important role in repairing DNA damage and maintaining genomic stability. Tumors with mutations in BRCA1/2 or other homologous recombination deficiency (HRD) genes are particularly sensitive to PARP inhibitors because of “synthetic lethality”, whereby a therapeutic agent can take advantage of an intrinsic weakness in DNA repair. Rucaparib has been investigated in several preclinical and clinical studies showing promising activity in BRCA-mutant and BRCA–wild-type epithelial ovarian cancers (EOCs). Dose-escalation Phase I studies have established the recommended Phase II dose to be 600 mg twice a day for oral rucaparib. Phase II and III studies have defined its role as treatment for BRCA-mutant recurrent high-grade EOC and as maintenance treatment for platinum-sensitive relapsed EOC following response to platinum-based chemotherapy. Genomic loss of heterozygosity has also been investigated as a potential signature of HRD and as a potential predictive biomarker of response. Treatment-induced adverse events (AEs) have been observed in almost all patients treated with rucaparib, but mainly lower grade; with the most common being nausea, vomiting, asthenia/fatigue, anemia and transient transaminitis. The majority of AEs occurred early in treatment, were transient and have been easily managed with supportive treatment, dose interruption or discontinuation. This review will analyze the results of clinical trials investigating efficacy and safety of rucaparib in patients with ovarian cancer.

Keywords: rucaparib, ovarian cancer, BRCA mutations, homologous recombination deficiency, maintenance treatment, PARP inhibitor

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