Anglo-Swedish firm AstraZeneca‘s cancer drug Recentin has failed to meet its primary endpoint in a Horizon Phase III trial, to assess the drug as a treatment for metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC).

The double-blind randomised trial compared Recentin’s performance with an alternative drug Avastin, both in combination with chemotherapy.

The efficacy did not meet the criteria for the primary endpoint of non-inferiority in progression-free survival.

The adverse events associated with Recentin had been consistent with previous studies.

An anti-angiogenic compound, Recentin is designed to inhibit all three vascular endothelial growth factor receptors, acting on blood and lymphatic vessels to inhibit growth and spread of the tumour.

The trial was the drug’s first of two pivotal studies in first-line mCRC, with the results awaited of the second trial, Horizon II.

Data from the studies is expected to be released in the second half of 2010, which will determine the drug’s clinical utility, if any.