Dr. Nizar Tannir – Update on RMC

  • June 16, 2017

Dr. Tannir is Professor of the Genitourinary Medical Oncology Department at MD Anderson Medical Center in Houston Texas.

We are constantly reminding ourselves of the urgency of the work we do to find a cure for RMC. There is now hope for patients and families who are facing RMC. Your hard work and the work of others in this arena has increased the level of awareness of RMC in the community of researchers who now see the importance and urgency of pushing forward with concerted collaborative efforts to advance the science to conquer this terrible cancer.

At MDACC, we are making progress in our research on RMC. We have collected close to 45 specimens and generated cell lines that we have characterized and are completing the molecular analysis of these cases.  We plan to submit our findings to the  prestigious medical journal, Cancer Cell, before the end of the year.

Regarding clinical trials in RMC: We currently have one active trial that is recruiting. It is a phase 2 trial of pembrolizumab (PD-L1 inhibitor) in several rare tumors including a cohort of 10 patients with RMC (NCT02853344). The trial (NCT 02601950) with tazemetostat (EZH2 inhibitor) that I was leading closed to patient accrual. We have enrolled and treated 15 patients with RMC. We are currently analyzing the data and hope to write a report of our findings in the next few months.

We are poised to open a new phase 2 trial exclusively for RMC patients combining nivolumab and ipilimumab. This trial is supported by the BMS company.

Lastly, as you know, we are preparing for our second RMC think-tank meeting which will take place in D.C. on October 12, 2017. We are working on the logistics, and of course, you will be invited to participate as a patient advocate.

Thank you for your work on behalf of all patients and families. We are grateful for your support of our research.