Introduction: Pazopanib (GW786034, Votrient®) is a vascular endothelial growth factor receptor-focused multi-tyrosine kinase inhibitor involved in inhibiting the angiogenesis pathway. The agent was recently registered for use in soft tissue sarcomas, a group of diseases with a major unmet medical need.
Areas covered: The relevance of angiogenesis in soft tissue sarcomas is discussed. These data were the basis to decide on the development of pazopanib in these diseases. The clinical pharmacology of pazopanib, as far as practically relevant, is summarized. After the first observations of possible activity in soft tissue sarcomas in the Phase I study, a Phase II and subsequent randomized placebo-controlled Phase III study were performed and are being put into perspective in this review.
Expert opinion: Pazopanib is an active drug for the treatment of chemotherapy-failing nonadipocytic soft tissue sarcomas. It almost triples progression-free survival significantly from 1.6 to 4.6 months in this heavily pretreated population. The safety profile is manageable, exemplified by the high dose intensity that can be achieved over time. Pazopanib can be considered as part of the standard of care for patients with soft tissue sarcomas.