Interview: A Dual Inhibitor Approach Shows Promise in Eye Cancer

Preclinical data suggest that a combined approach to metastatic uveal melanoma may be a viable treatment option. According to the findings, the combination of RAF/MEK inhibitor VS-6766 with focal adhesion kinase (FAK) inhibitor defactinib may be suitable for uveal melanoma patients. The data were presented at the American Association for Cancer Research 2020 Virtual Annual Meeting II.

An estimated 2,500 patients are diagnosed with uveal melanoma each year, said senior investigator of the study J. Silvio Gutkind, PhD, Distinguished Professor of Pharmacology and Associate Director for Basic Science at UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center. Of these patients, about half will develop metastasis over five to 10 years, and it’s unclear why. Survival is therefore very limited, with most patients dying between six months and one year, and conventional therapies—such as chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery—are ineffective.

Dr. Gutkind discussed the findings of the study—which has been in the making since 1992—as well as what surprised him, what the future looks like for this area of research, and everything that made the study possible—in an interview with DocWire News.