Despite advances in medical technology and a constantly evolving understanding of the mechanisms of cancer progression, researchers and clinicians are faced with a litany of challenges along the road to finding a cure for the most aggressive forms of cancer. This is particularly true of glioblastoma multiforme, the most common and most aggressive form of human brain cancer.
Lori Simons took the bright orange pill at 3 a.m. Eight hours later, doctors sliced into her brain, looking for signs that the drug was working.
She is taking part in one of the most unusual cancer experiments in the nation. With special permission from the Food and Drug Administration and multiple drug companies, an Arizona hospital is testing medicines very early in development and never tried on brain tumors before.
Within a day of getting a single dose of one of these drugs, patients have their tumors removed and checked to see if the medicine had any effect. If it did, they can stay on an experimental drug that otherwise would not be available to them. If it did not, they can try something else, months sooner than they normally would find out that a drug had failed to help.
…It is called a “phase zero” clinical trial because it comes before the usual three-phase experiments to determine a drug’s safety, ideal dose and effectiveness.
I thought it best to include the last part of the quote.