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Efficacy and Safety of Dronabinol in the Improvement of Chemotherapy-induced and Tumor-related Symptoms in Advanced Pancreatic Cancer

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Know the risks and potential benefits of clinical studies and talk to your health care provider before participating. Read our disclaimer for details.
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03984214
Recruitment Status : Not yet recruiting
First Posted : June 12, 2019
Last Update Posted : June 12, 2019
Sponsor:
Collaborators:
Medical University of Graz
Unidata Geodesign
Bionorica SE
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Arbeitsgemeinschaft medikamentoese Tumortherapie

Brief Summary:
Aim of this phase III trial is to investigate the efficacy and safety of dronabinol (orally administered tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)) as adjuvant therapy to first-line standard chemotherapy in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer for improvement of chemotherapy- and tumor-related symptoms applicated by individual titration up to the maximum tolerated dose.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Pancreatic Cancer Non-resectable Chemotherapy-induced Nausea and Vomiting Pancreatic Cancer Metastatic Drug: Dronabinol in Oral Dosage Form Drug: Placebo in Oral Dosage Form Phase 3

Detailed Description:

Patients with pancreatic cancer suffer from multiple symptoms related to the tumor itself or induced by the chemotherapy. The available supportive therapy is still not able to relief all symptoms that are caused by the malignancy itself as well as by the antineoplastic therapy.

Additionally, anorexia and weight loss, that often result in increased morbidity and mortality in this patient population as well as in psycho-social burden and suffering in patients and their relatives, are unmet needs in pancreatic cancer patients.

Therapeutic approaches focus on treating the malignancy itself, additional nutritional support and physical examination might prevent patients from further side effects such as sarcopenia.

During the last decades a number of appetite-modulating drugs have been under clinical investigation. A number of studies focused on the endocannabinoid system, which is involved amongst others in appetite-modulating, antiemetic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory processes.

As dronabinol is already used as magistral formulation, its beneficial effect has often been observed in these patients in the clinical routine, especially in patients with therapy-refractory nausea and emesis. Due to its broad efficacy it might be of benefit for patients suffering from malignancy. Thus, investigators want to evaluate the efficacy of dronabinol in the improvement of chemotherapy-induced and tumor-related symptoms in advanced pancreatic patients during systemic first-line chemotherapy. However, data on optimal dosage are conflicting yet.

In detail, investigators want to study whether dronabinol has a positive influence on quality of life and whether symptoms caused by the tumor or by the chemotherapy itself might be palliated by dronabinol. Beneficial and potential harmful side effects and the personal perception of advanced pancreatic cancer patients will be documented.


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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Estimated Enrollment : 140 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Double (Participant, Investigator)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Multicenter, Randomized, Double-blind, Placebo-controlled, Phase III Clinical Trial to Investigate the Efficacy and Safety of Dronabinol in the Improvement of ChemOthErapy-induced and Tumor-Related Symptoms in Patients With Locally Advanced or Metastatic Pancreatic Cancer During First-line Chemotherapy (DIsCOvER)
Estimated Study Start Date : October 15, 2019
Estimated Primary Completion Date : June 30, 2022
Estimated Study Completion Date : June 30, 2022

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Drug Information available for: Dronabinol

Arm Intervention/treatment
Active Comparator: Dronabinol
BX-1 contains 25 mg dronabinol/ml (2.5% delta-9-trans-tetrahydrocannabinol = THC), oral solution; three applications per day from 2.5 mg (3 x 1 droplet) up to 30 mg (3 x 12 droplets)
Drug: Dronabinol in Oral Dosage Form
Titration period for 4 weeks: titration according to tolerability from 2.5 mg (3 x 1 droplet) up to 30 mg (3 x 12 droplets) per day; dose increased by 2.5 mg (3 x 1 droplet) every other day Maintenance period for 12 weeks: individually tolerated maximum dose (up to 30 mg ≙ 3 x 12 droplets) at end of titration period will be continued for maintenance treatment Tapering period for 2 weeks: dose is decreased every other day by 5 mg (3 x 2 droplets) Safety follow-up: 4 weeks after end of treatment
Other Name: BX-1

Placebo Comparator: Placebo
Placebo: oral solution with cannabis flavor without active substance and otherwise identical to active comparator, three applications per day from 3 x 1 droplet up to 3 x 12 droplets
Drug: Placebo in Oral Dosage Form
Titration period for 4 weeks: titration according to tolerability from 3 x 1 droplet up to 3 x 12 droplets per day; dose increased by 3 x 1 droplet every other day Maintenance period for 12 weeks: individually tolerated maximum dose (up to 3 x 12 droplets) at end of titration period will be continued for maintenance treatment Tapering period for 2 weeks: dose is decreased every other day by 3 x 2 droplets Safety follow-up: 4 weeks after end of treatment




Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Standardized area under the curve of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ)-C30 symptom summary score over the on-treatment period. [ Time Frame: Prior to treatment start until end of 16 weeks maintenance treatment ]

    The EORTC-QLQ-C30 is an integrated system for assessing the health-related quality of life (QoL) of cancer patients participating in international clinical trials.

    The validated QLQ-C30 summary score is calculated as mean score of the 13 of the 15 EORTC QLQ-C30 scales (v3.0), based on 27 of 30 items (the Financial Impact scale and Quality of Life score are not included). A high score for a symptom scale / item (fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, dyspnoea, insomnia, appetite loss, constipation, diarrhoea) represents a high level of symptomatology / problems. A high score for a functional scale (physical functioning, role functioning, cognitive functioning, emotional functioning, social functioning) represents a high / healthy level of functioning. Scores for individual items: "Not at All" = 1 point, "A Little" = 2 points, "Quite a Bit" = 3 points, "Very Much" = 4 points.

    A linear transformation is used to standardize the raw score, so that overall scores range from 0 to 100.



Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Standardized area under the curve of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ)-C30 symptom summary score over the maintenance period [ Time Frame: After 4 weeks of treatment until week 16 ]

    The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ) is an integrated system for assessing the health-related quality of life (QoL) of cancer patients participating in international clinical trials.

    The validated QLQ-C30 summary score is calculated as mean score of items. A high score for a symptom scale / item (fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, dyspnoea, insomnia, appetite loss, constipation, diarrhoea) represents a high level of symptomatology / problems.

    Scores for individual items: "Not at All" = 1 point, "A Little" = 2 points, "Quite a Bit" = 3 points, "Very Much" = 4 points. A linear transformation is used to standardize the raw score, so that overall scores range from 0 to 100.


  2. Change of European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ)-C30 symptom summary score from baseline to summary score over the maintenance period [ Time Frame: From treatment start until week 16 ]

    The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ) is an integrated system for assessing the health-related quality of life (QoL) of cancer patients participating in international clinical trials.

    The validated QLQ-C30 summary score is calculated as mean score of items. A high score for a symptom scale / item (fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, dyspnoea, insomnia, appetite loss, constipation, diarrhoea) represents a high level of symptomatology / problems.

    Scores for individual items: "Not at All" = 1 point, "A Little" = 2 points, "Quite a Bit" = 3 points, "Very Much" = 4 points. A linear transformation is used to standardize the raw score, so that overall scores range from 0 to 100.


  3. Symptom scales of European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ)-C30 [ Time Frame: At baseline and 2-weekly until end of treatment at week 18 ]

    A high score for a symptom scale / item (fatigue, nausea and vomiting, pain, dyspnoea, insomnia, appetite loss, constipation, diarrhoea) represents a high level of symptomatology / problems.

    Scores for individual items: "Not at All" = 1 point, "A Little" = 2 points, "Quite a Bit" = 3 points, "Very Much" = 4 points. A linear transformation is used to standardize the raw score, so that overall scores range from 0 to 100.


  4. Global quality of life of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ)-C30 [ Time Frame: At baseline and 2-weekly until end of treatment at week 18 ]

    The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ) is an integrated system for assessing the health-related quality of life (QoL) of cancer patients participating in international clinical trials.

    The validated QLQ-C30 summary score is calculated as mean score of items. A high score for the global health status (overall health during the past week) and global QoL (overall quality of life during the past week) represents a high QoL.

    Scores: 1 - 7, 1 = very poor and 7 = excellent. A linear transformation is used to standardize the raw score, so that overall scores range from 0 to 100.


  5. Functional scales of the European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ)-C30 [ Time Frame: At baseline and 2-weekly until end of treatment at week 18 ]

    The European Organisation for Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) quality of life questionnaire (QLQ) is an integrated system for assessing the health-related quality of life (QoL) of cancer patients participating in international clinical trials. A high score for a functional scale (physical functioning, role functioning, cognitive functioning, emotional functioning, social functioning) represents a high / healthy level of functioning.

    Scores for individual items: "Not at All" = 1 point, "A Little" = 2 points, "Quite a Bit" = 3 points, "Very Much" = 4 points.

    A linear transformation is used to standardize the raw score, so that overall scores range from 0 to 100.


  6. Mean change from baseline of the Glasgow Prognostic Score [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Change of serum levels of the score-defining biomarkers C-reactive protein (CRP) and albumin. Prognostic scores; 0 (CRP ≥ 10 mg/l), 1 (CRP > 10 mg/l and albumin ≥ 35 g/l), 2 CRP > 10 mg/l and albumin < 35g/l). Score 0 indicates good prognosis, score 1 intermediate prognosis and score 2 poor prognosis.

  7. Amount of concomitant medication taken [ Time Frame: From baseline until end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Special focus on antiemetic, psychotropic and pain medication

  8. Mean time to critical weight-loss (5%) [ Time Frame: From baseline until end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Assessed with a standard scale

  9. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Lean body mass (LBM) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Lean body mass (LBM) kg

  10. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Total body water (TBW) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Total body water (TBW) kg

  11. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Fat free mass (FFM) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Fat free mass (FFM) kg

  12. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Fat mass (FM) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Fat mass (FM) kg

  13. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Body cell mass (BCM) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Body cell mass (BCM) kg

  14. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Extracellular mass (EM) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Extracellular mass (EM) kg

  15. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Phase angle (PA) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]

    Mean change of Phase angle (PA); Phase Angle has long been linked to nutritional status. This marker is fast becoming recognised as a global health marker in total body health assessment. A higher Phase Angle could mean an increase in muscle mass (body cell mass) or a decrease in fluid, either from recovery from infection or injury (a good thing!) or a decrease in fluid from dehydration (a bad thing!). A loss of fat could also increase Phase Angle.

    A lower Phase Angle could mean a loss of muscle mass (a bad thing), or an increase of fluid (rehydrating which is a good thing, or sign of inflammation or infection - a bad thing), or gaining fat (which could be a good or bad thing depending on your state of health).

    Phase Angle is a direct measurement, (not a calculation using equations) of the cell membrane.


  16. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Resistance (Rz) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Resistance (Rz), unit ohm; the resistance reflects the water or fluid in the body

  17. Mean changes from baseline for Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) parameter Reactance(Xc) [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Mean change of Reactance (Xc), unit ohm; reactance reflects the body cell mass.

  18. Mean change from baseline of muscle strength [ Time Frame: At baseline and at end of treatment at week 18 ]
    To assess physical strength of patient's handgrip strength will be measured prior and after study treatment using a hydraulic hand dynamometer; mean value of three consecutive measurements will be documented

  19. Proportion of patients not adhering to individual baseline chemotherapy regimen [ Time Frame: From baseline until end of treatment at week 18 ]
    Percentage of patients who do not receive full dose of planned chemotherapy regimen and/or within scheduled time frame (interruption or delay)

  20. Chemotherapeutic dose intensity over the treatment period of 18 weeks [ Time Frame: From baseline until end of treatment at week 18 ]
    The total amount of applied chemotherapy over the study treatment phase is documented

  21. Frequency and severity of (serious) adverse events (S)AE [ Time Frame: From baseline until safety visit at week 22 ]
    Assessed with Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (NCI-CTCAE V5.0)

  22. Incidence of adverse drug reactions (ARs) [ Time Frame: From baseline until safety visit at week 22 ]
    Frequency and severity of ARs

  23. Progression-free survival (PFS) [ Time Frame: From treatment start until the date of first documented progression or death from any cause assessed up to week 22 ]
    PFS in months; ; patients will be asked to agree on collection of data regarding PFS also after end of trial

  24. Overall survival (OS) [ Time Frame: From treatment start until death from any cause assessed up to week 22 ]
    OS in months; ; patients will be asked to agree on collection of data regarding PFS also after end of trial



Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.


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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Male and female subjects aged ≥18
  • Patients with diagnosis of locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic cancer, eligible for first-line chemotherapy
  • According to investigator life expectancy of > 4 months at screening
  • Female patients must either be post-menopausal or surgically sterilized or use a highly effective method of birth control (hormonal contraceptives, intra-uterine devices, or diaphragms with spermicide) for the duration of the study and/or must have a negative pregnancy test (female patients with childbearing potential only)
  • Willing and able to provide written informed consent.
  • Written informed consent given prior to any trial-related procedure not part of the normal medical practice.

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Patients who are members of the staff of the trial center, staff of the sponsor or CRO, the investigator him/herself or close relatives of the investigator.
  • Simultaneous participation in another interventional clinical trial, participation in another trial with less than 30 days or five half-lives of the IMP (whatever is longer) to screening, or previous participation in this trial.
  • Ineligible for chemotherapy treatment with FOLFIRINOX or gemcitabine+Abraxane®
  • Use of dronabinol or cannabis-based medicine with THC as constituent within 6 months before screening. A urine drug test will be performed during screening phase.
  • Use of marihuana within the last 4 weeks and unwillingness to abstain for the duration of the study. A urine drug test will be performed during screening phase.
  • Currently receiving chemotherapy or anticipated use of chemotherapy due to any condition not related to locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic cancer
  • History of or existing cardiac diseases or pathological findings (e.g. chronic insufficiency NYHA III/IV, severe arrhythmia, unstable angina pectoris, myocardial infarction within the past 6 months, significant QT-prolongation etc.), which in the opinion of the investigator might interfere with the safety or tolerability of the study treatment
  • ECG must not be older than 3 months before screening or if none is available, has to be performed during the screening phase and assessed prior to randomization
  • Clinically relevant, severe pulmonary diseases, uncontrolled hypertension, or poorly controlled diabetes
  • History of or existing relevant CNS and/or psychiatric disorders (e.g. schizophrenia, psychosis, manic and/or depressive disorders, suicidal ideations, etc) which might interfere with the safety or tolerability of the study treatment. Patients with reactive depression are not excluded from participation.
  • Known current or past (within the last year prior to screening) alcohol, narcotics or drug abuse
  • Pregnancy or breast feeding
  • Known allergy to cannabinoids and other constituents of the investigational medicinal product
  • Intake of prohibited concomitant medication
  • Any other substantial medical condition that in the opinion of the investigator could create undue risk to the subject or could affect adherence with the trial protocol
  • Legal incapacity, limited legal capacity or any other condition which makes the subject unable to understand the subject information and informed consent form (ICF)
  • Patients unable or unwilling to waive driving motor vehicles or using machines especially during titration period
  • Unable or unwilling to comply with the protocol regulations

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier (NCT number): NCT03984214


Contacts
Layout table for location contacts
Contact: Richard Greil, Prof.MD +43 57255 ext 25801 r.greil@agmt.at
Contact: Daniela Wolkersdorfer, PhD +43 662640 ext 4412 d.wolkersdorfer@agmt.at

Locations
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Austria
Klinikum Wels-Grieskirchen GmbH, Abteilung für Innere Medizin IV Not yet recruiting
Wels, Oberösterreich, Austria, 4600
Contact: Gudrun Piringer, MD    +43 7242 415 ext 3452    Gurdrun.Piringer@klinikum-wegr.at   
Contact: Mathaeus Muehlberger, BScN    +43 7242 415 ext 3452    Mathaeus.MuehlberMathaeus.Muehlberger@klinikum-wegr.at   
Principal Investigator: Gudrun Piringer, MD         
KABEG-Klinikum Klagenfurt am Woerthersee, Abteilung f. Anaesthesie u. Intensivmedizin Not yet recruiting
Klagenfurt, Austria, 9020
Contact: Rudolf Likar, Prof.MD.MSc    +43 463 538 ext 26100    rudolf.likar@kabeg.at   
Contact: Brigitte Trummer    +43 463 538 ext 35756    brigitte.trummer@kabeg.at   
Principal Investigator: Rudolf Likar, Prof.MD.MSc         
IIIrd Medical Department, Private Medical University Hospital Salzburg Not yet recruiting
Salzburg, Austria, 5020
Contact: Richard Greil, Prof.MD    +43 57255 ext 25801    r.greil@salk.at   
Contact: Michaela Schachner, Mag.    +43 57255 ext 25823    m.schachner@salk.at   
Landeskrankenhaus Steyr, Interne Medizin II Not yet recruiting
Steyr, Austria, A-4400
Contact: Georg Schreil, MD    +43 50554 66 ext 24208    georg.schreil@gespag.at   
Contact: Regina Neuhauser    +43 50554 66 ext 24203    regina.neuhauser@gespag.at   
Principal Investigator: Georg Schreil, MD         
Medizinische Univ. Wien, Univ.Klinik f. Innere Medizin I, Onkologie Not yet recruiting
Vienna, Austria, 1090
Contact: Gerald Prager, Ass.Prof.MD    +43 1 40400 ext 44450    gerald.prager@meduniwien.ac.at   
Contact: Susanne Schlagbauer       susanne.schlagbauer@meduniwien.ac.at   
Principal Investigator: Gerald Prager, Ass.Prof.MD         
Hanusch Krankenhaus der Wiener Gebietskrankenkasse Not yet recruiting
Vienna, Austria, 1140
Contact: Thamer Sliwa, MD    +43 1 910 21 ext 57301    thamer.sliwa@wgkk.at   
Contact: Sahra Nasari, MSc    +43 1 910 21 ext 86907    sahra.nasari@wgkk.at   
Principal Investigator: Thamer Sliwa, MD         
Sponsors and Collaborators
Arbeitsgemeinschaft medikamentoese Tumortherapie
Medical University of Graz
Unidata Geodesign
Bionorica SE
Investigators
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Principal Investigator: Felix Keil, Prof.MD Med. Dept. III, Hematolog and Oncology

Additional Information:
Publications:
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Responsible Party: Arbeitsgemeinschaft medikamentoese Tumortherapie
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT03984214     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: AGMT_DISCOVER
First Posted: June 12, 2019    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: June 12, 2019
Last Verified: May 2019
Individual Participant Data (IPD) Sharing Statement:
Plan to Share IPD: No

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Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Drug Product: No
Studies a U.S. FDA-regulated Device Product: No

Keywords provided by Arbeitsgemeinschaft medikamentoese Tumortherapie:
Pancreatic Cancer
Tumor related symptoms
Dronabinol
THC
Placebo
Chemotherapy-induced Nausea and Vomiting
Quality of life
EORTC QLQ-C30
FOLFIRINOX
Abraxane
Gemcitabine

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Pancreatic Neoplasms
Digestive System Neoplasms
Neoplasms by Site
Neoplasms
Endocrine Gland Neoplasms
Pancreatic Diseases
Nausea
Vomiting
Digestive System Diseases
Endocrine System Diseases
Signs and Symptoms, Digestive
Signs and Symptoms
Dronabinol
Hallucinogens
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Psychotropic Drugs
Analgesics, Non-Narcotic
Analgesics
Sensory System Agents
Peripheral Nervous System Agents
Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists
Cannabinoid Receptor Modulators
Neurotransmitter Agents
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Hormones
Hormones, Hormone Substitutes, and Hormone Antagonists