CTRT are fundraising to run a trial of treatment with immunotherapy for women with Gestational Trophoblastic Disease whose first round of chemotherapy has not completely eradicated the disease.

The target is £1.6 million

What is Gestational Trophoblastic Disease?

Gestational Trophoblastic Disease (GTD) is the name for abnormal cells and/or tumours that develop in the womb. Most are benign (non-cancerous), but some are cancerous

GTD includes Molar Pregnancies, Persistent Trophoblastic Disease and Choriocarcinomas.

GTD is different to womb cancer

GTD can develop during or after pregnancy. It is most commonly the result of a pregnancy with an abnormal combination of a sperm and an egg

In other cases, a GTD is a cancerous growth that can develop from a normal placenta

What is the current treatment for GTD?

The majority of patients with GTD will be cured with one or two relatively non-toxic single agent chemotherapeutic drugs. These do not have many side effects and no long term effect on the body.

However, some patients will require much more toxic multi-drug chemotherapy treatment which do have considerable side effects such as increased susceptibility to infections and hair loss, as well as longer term problems such as an earlier menopause.

We are currently trying to develop ways to avoid the use of these more toxic multi-drug chemotherapy treatments

What is the trial?

This trial will offer patients immunotherapy treatment instead of multi-agent chemotherapy to try and cure their disease. The trial will combine Pembrolizumab, an immunotherapy drug, with one of the single chemotherapy drugs normally used to treat this cancer. It is already used to treat other cancers such as melanoma and kidney cancer.

Immunotherapy is a type of cancer treatment that helps your immune system to fight cancer. It helps your immune system to recognise and fight cancer cells. Immunotherapy educates the immune system to recognise and attack specific cancer cells and boost immune cells to help them eliminate cancer.

It is far less toxic than traditional multi-agent chemotherapy treatment and has fewer side effects. We expect this trial will save patients from having to endure the toxicity of multi-agent chemotherapy and cure their cancer.

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