A trial looking at TroVax for ovarian cancer, primary peritoneal cancer and fallopian tube cancer that has come back (TRIOC)

Cancer type:

Ovarian cancer




Phase 2

This trial is looking at a vaccine called TroVax for the following cancers that have come back after initial treatment


More about this trial

Doctors initially treat these cancers with surgery and chemotherapy. After treatment, you may have blood tests to look for a marker called CA125 Open a glossary item. Having an increased amount of CA125 in your blood may mean that your cancer has come back. But you can have an increased level of CA125, without any other signs or symptoms of your cancer having come back. If this happens, your doctor may not want to start chemotherapy until you have signs or symptoms.

TroVax helps the immune system to recognise and attack cancer cells. Many cancer cells carry a protein called 5T4. In this trial, researchers want to find out if TroVax helps the immune system to recognise 5T4 and attack cancer cells that carry this protein.

The aim of this trial is to find out if giving TroVax after a rise in CA125 can slow the growth of cancer and delay the start of chemotherapy.

Who can enter

You may be able to enter this trial if

  • You have epithelial ovarian cancer, primary peritoneal cancer or fallopian tube cancer that is stage 1c, 2 or 3 or stage 4a 
  • Your CA125 level is at least twice the upper normal level or your CA125 is above the normal level and there is a small amount of cancer can be seen on a CT scan Open a glossary item – your doctor can tell you this
  • Your initial treatment was surgery to remove your ovaries, fallopian tubes, womb and abdominal lining
  • You had chemotherapy after surgery that included a drug from the group called platinum drugs Open a glossary item – if you have had other chemotherapy after your initial treatment and there was no sign of your cancer after treatment (a complete response Open a glossary item) you may be able to take part
  • Your CA125 levels were normal after your platinum drug chemotherapy – your doctor can tell you this
  • Your doctor thinks your cancer may be coming back because your CA125 levels are high but doesn’t recommend chemotherapy yet because you don’t have symptoms
  • Your immune system is working properly
  • You have satisfactory blood test results
  • You are well enough to carry out all your normal activities, apart from heavy physical work (performance status of 0 or 1)
  • You are at least 18 years old

You cannot enter this trial if

  • You have a type of cancer called carcinosarcoma or mixed mullerian – your doctor can tell you this
  • Your doctor feels you need to start chemotherapy immediately due to symptoms or what they see on a CT scan
  • Your cancer has spread to certain areas in the liver or spleen - your doctor can tell you this
  • You have a build up of fluid in the abdomen (ascites) that night need to be drained within the next 2 months
  • You have a build up of fluid between the sheets of skin which cover the lungs (pleural effusion) that might need to be drained within the next 2 months
  • You have had cancer treatment in the past 4 weeks or are currently having treatment
  • You have had steroids for more than 4 weeks apart from inhalers and nasal sprays
  • You have been taking corticosteroids for the past 6 months or more unless you are taking them due to a problem with your adrenal glands Open a glossary item. If you have previously taken corticosteriods for 6 months or more you may be able to take part if you stopped taking them at least 3 months before being put into one of the groups in this trial
  • You are taking medication that damps down your immune system or your immune system isn’t working properly
  • You have had another cancer in the past 3 years apart from non melanoma skin cancer
  • You are taking complementary medicines Open a glossary item that could affect you taking part in this trial
  • You are HIV, hepatitis B or hepatitis C positive
  • You have any other medical condition that could affect you taking part in this trial
  • You are allergic to eggs or the smallpox vaccine
  • You have cancer that has spread to your brain or spinal cord

Trial design

This is a phase 2 trial. It will recruit 75 people. It is a randomised trial. The people taking part are put into treatment groups by a computer. Neither you nor your doctor will be able to decide which group you are in. And neither of you will know which group you are in. This is called a double blind trial.

Half the people will have TroVax. The other half will have a dummy drug (placebo).

TRIOC trial diagram

You have TroVax or the dummy drug as an injection into the muscle at the top of your arm. On each visit the opposite arm is used from the time before. You have a total of 12 injections over 49 weeks (about 11 months). You continue treatment as long as it is helping you and the side effects aren’t too bad.

The trial team will ask you to fill out a questionnaire

  • Before you start treatment
  • When you have the 3rd injection and then at every injection
  • After you finish treatment
  • 5 and 11 months after you have finished treatment

The questionnaire will ask about side effects and how you’ve been feeling. This is called a quality of life study.

If you agree to take part in this study, the researchers will ask for extra blood samples during treatment and a sample of your cancer that was removed when you had surgery.

Hospital visits

You see the doctor to have some tests before taking part in this trial. These test include

The treatment lasts about 11 months. During this time, you go to the hospital at least 12 times. You have regular blood tests and 4 more scans.

After treatment you see the doctor after

  • 1 month
  • 2 months – you have a scan at this visit
  • Every 3 months for a year – you have a scan at each of these visits
  • Every 6 months for 2 years

Side effects

TroVax is a new drug and there may be side effects we don’t know about yet. The possible side effects include

  • Pain, itching and swelling at the injection site (or nearby lymph nodes Open a glossary item)
  • High temperature (fever) or chills
  • Flu like symptoms



Recruitment start:

Recruitment end:

How to join a clinical trial

Please note: In order to join a trial you will need to discuss it with your doctor, unless otherwise specified.

Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Chief Investigator

Dr Agnieszka Michael

Supported by

Cancer Research UK
Experimental Cancer Medicine Centre (ECMC)
NIHR Clinical Research Network: Cancer
Oxford Biomedica
University College London (UCL)

Other information

This is Cancer Research UK trial number CRUKE/11/059.

Questions about cancer? Contact our information nurses

Freephone 0808 800 4040

Last review date

CRUK internal database number:


Please note - unless we state otherwise in the summary, you need to talk to your doctor about joining a trial.

Around 1 in 5 people take part in clinical trials

3 phases of trials

Around 1 in 5 people diagnosed with cancer in the UK take part in a clinical trial.

Last reviewed:

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