Welcome to the MErCuRIC Project

Colorectal cancer (CRC), also known as bowel cancer, is the 3rd most common cancer in Europe.

With approximately 200,000 deaths per year, it remains the 2nd most common cause of cancer death.

More than half of all bowel cancer patients develop distant metastases and have 5-year overall survival (OS) of less than 5% because of ineffective treatments. Bowel cancer, also known as colorectal cancer refers to cancer that starts in the colon (large bowel) or back passage (rectum). Increased understanding of cancer biology, coupled with the implementation of “omics”-based approaches, has revealed that cancer must be considered a heterogeneous disease. Historically, “one-size-fits-all” approaches have been standard practice in bowel cancer treatment, but with the increased understanding of the molecular/genetic heterogeneity of bowel cancer, it is clear that novel treatments must be developed and tested in selected subgroups to maximize the benefit of these new developments.

MErCuRIC is a multicentre phase Ib/II clinical trial which will assess a novel therapeutic strategy (combined treatment of a MEK inhibitor MEK-162 with a MET inhibitor PF-02341066) to combat metastasis, improve survival and change current clinical practice for CRC patients with KRAS mutant (MT) and KRAS wild-type (WT) (with aberrant c-MET) tumours. The consortium will go beyond the current state-of-the-art by (i) employing a novel treatment strategy targeting the biology of the disease and by (ii) using next-generation sequencing (NGS) and ‘xenopatients’ to identify CRC patient subgroups who will maximally benefit from this novel treatment strategy.

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