St. Claire HealthCare participating in study to lower risk of colon and rectal cancer's return

Aug 4, 2018

Left to Right: Ashley Gibson, Brittany Blair, Stephanie Justice, Dr. Allen Lim, Vickie Fairchild.
Credit St. Claire HealthCare

St. Claire HealthCare is collaborating on a nationwide research study to test whether two drugs can help prevent second cancers and the formation of new precancerous polyps, known as adenomas, in patients who have already battled colorectal cancer.

There are more than 1 million colorectal cancer survivors in the United States today, and that number is growing., according to American Cancer Society statistics. Even after patients complete treatment and are cancer-free, their risk of developing precancerous polyps or a second cancer is notably higher than the risk faced by the general population.

The Preventing Adenomas of the Colon with Eflornithine and Sulindac (PACES) clinical trial is managed by the international cancer trials group SWOG, with public support from the National Cancer Institute (NCI). PACES will enroll about 1,500 patients who have recently completed their treatment for colon or rectal cancer. Volunteers will take either eflornithine, sulindac, both drugs, or a placebo daily for three years and will then have a colonoscopy to check for precancerous polyps.

PACES is testing these two drugs in colorectal cancer survivors after previous research showed that they held promise for people currently undergoing treatment. That previous study showed the drugs significantly reduced the chances of people developed high-risk cancers.

Patients interested in joining the PACES trial must meet eligibility criteria. Those who have had surgery for colorectal cancer within the previous 6 – 15 months, have since completed any chemotherapy, and are now considered cancer-free may be eligible to join.

The two drugs being tested are not new, though neither has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) specifically for colorectal cancer prevention. Both drugs lower the body’s levels of a group of naturally-formed molecules called polyamines, though the drugs work in different ways. Excess polyamines have a role in the development of colorectal cancer.

For more information on the PACES trial at St. Claire HealthCare, contact the Oncology Research Coordinator, Ashley Gibson at (606) 783-7561.

The PACES study is being conducted by SWOG, a cancer research network which designs and conducts clinical trials with federal funding from NCI. . For more information, visit SWOG.org. St. Claire HealthCare is a SWOG member and participates in cancer research studies, including trials conducted within the NCI’s National Clinical Trials Network.

(provided by St. Claire HealthCare)