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US Oncology Research, Epizyme collaborate

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Epizyme, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company creating novel epigenetic therapies, and US Oncology Research, one of the nation’s largest networks of independent, community-based oncology practices dedicated to advancing high-quality treatments through clinical trials, announced a collaboration to screen and identify relapsed or refractory follicular lymphoma (FL) and diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) patients with EZH2 mutations. Once identified, eligible candidates will be directed to Epizyme’s ongoing phase II clinical trial of tazemetostat, the company’s first-in-class EZH2 inhibitor, as a single-agent treatment for relapsed or refractory patients with FL or DLBCL.

“Relapsed follicular lymphoma and DLBCL are difficult diseases for which there is generally poor prognosis and limited treatment options for patients,” said Michael Seiden, M.D., Ph.D. chief medical officer, US Oncology Research. “Physicians affiliated with US Oncology Research strive to provide access to the treatment strategies that are best suited to each patient. Given the encouraging clinical activity and favorable safety profile demonstrated by tazemetostat in these patient populations, US Oncology Research is pleased to work with Epizyme to offer this screening process so that appropriate patients being treated by an affiliated physician can be promptly directed to a clinical trial evaluating an investigational therapy that is targeted to their cancer.”

Under the collaboration, US Oncology Research will implement a separate screening protocol in 68 locations in the U.S. to identify relapsed or refractory FL and DLBCL patients with tumors bearing EZH2 mutations who may be candidates for enrollment in Epizyme’s ongoing phase II clinical trial. US Oncology Research will direct identified patients to the tazemetostat phase II clinical trial for protocol screening and potential enrollment into the trial. Sites began screening patients in July 2017.

“We are pleased that US Oncology Research, a program recognized for tremendous success in oncology clinical trials and for providing patients with access to novel treatments, is joining our effort to develop a targeted treatment for lymphoma patients with EZH2 mutations,” said Peter Ho, chief medical officer of Epizyme. “This collaboration significantly expands our clinical trial footprint within the U.S. and is expected to further enhance our enrollment of patients whose tumors harbor an EZH2 mutation for our ongoing Phase 2 study of tazemetostat. We believe that tazemetostat has the potential to play a very important role in the targeted treatment of these patients in the future.”

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