This study is being performed to evaluate the effectiveness of a new drug, clonidine HCl MBT, to prevent the onset of severe oral mucositis (SOM) in patients with oropharyngeal cancer (OPC) who are being treated with chemoradiotherapy. OPC occurs on the back of the tongue or throat and is often treated by the use of chemoradiotherapy, where radiation is localized to these areas. Radiation to the OPC affected tissues causes the release of small proteins called cytokines that cause damage to the area surrounding the tumor including the oral cavity. This damage is characterized by the formation of mucositis which includes redness, pain and ulcers in the mouth and back of the throat. In addition, as more chemoradiation is administered to treat OPC, the inability to eat a solid diet (a Grade 3 mucositis) or to consume anything at all by mouth (a Grade 4 mucositis) occurs in many patients. Collectively, Grade 3 and Grade 4 mucositis is referred to as SOM. It is a frequent, debilitating side effect of chemoradiation in OPC that may cause patients to stop or interrupt their treatment, develop other side effects like the inability to swallow, or require the increased use of pain medications. OPC survivors who have successful treatment of their tumors often develop permanent swallowing, speaking and range of motion issues that may be linked back to the inability to eat and/or drink caused by SOM during their chemoradiotherapy treatment. Clonidine may inhibit the production of cytokines that cause SOM and clonidine HCl mucoadhesive buccal tablet (MBT) has been designed to deliver sustained high levels of clonidine in the oral cavity, potentially decreasing cytokine production and leading to a decrease in the incidence of SOM. Clonidine HCl MBT is a once per day treatment provided as a tablet that a patient may self-administer to the gums, where it sticks tightly to release clonidine over many hours. The primary objective of this Phase 2b/3 study is to evaluate whether clonidine HCl MBT is more effective than placebo MBT in decreasing the incidence of SOM.
Phase II, Phase IIIRead more