India-based Peplin has launched a pilot Phase II clinical trial of its proprietary product, PEP005 Topical for the treatment of cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma in situ (SCCIS), in Australia, the company reported.
The new trial follows positive results of a Phase IIa trial of the drug in superficial basal cell carcinoma, where two consecutive days of 0.05 percent PEP005 cleared 71 percent of skin tumors in the study subjects. The new trial will be expanded to evaluate the same treatment regimen in patients with SCCIS.
The worldwide prevalence of skin cancer is highest in Australia, where the disease accounts for 80 percent of all new cancer cases diagnosed each year. Together, squamous cell and basal cell carcinoma are the most costly cancers in Australia, accounting for $232 million in annual treatment costs.