The Importance of Maintaining CRC Clinical Trials Amidst the COVID-19 Pandemic

January 28, 2021

Zev A. Wainberg, MD, discusses the impact of the COVID-19 on the colorectal cancer field specifically in terms of clinical trial research.

Zev A. Wainberg, MD, assistant professor of Medicine at the University of California Los Angeles, discusses the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) on the colorectal cancer field specifically in terms of clinical trial research.

COVID-19 has impacted our clinical trial at every academic center in different ways, explains Wainberg. Still, these studies remain important for patients and those eligible should still be enrolled in trials. The importance of clinical trial research is to get the data needed to develop new drugs in the space. Today, the development of new agents is most vital in the third-line setting of CRC as few successful trials have occurred for patients being treated in the third-line setting.

The popular strategy currently seems to be starting patients of regorafenib (Stivarga) or TAS-102 (Lonsurf) before enrolling them in a clinical trial, says Wainberg. There is no right or wrong strategy, he notes, but if there is a good trial open for a patient, the oncologist should enroll their patient. This holds true, according to Wainberg, regardless of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.