Sept 6 U.S. regulators on Friday approved use of
Celgene Corp's Abraxane to treat patients with
pancreatic cancer that has spread to other parts of the body,
citing a trial that showed the drug significantly prolonged
The medicine is already approved in the United States to
treat lung cancer and breast cancer.
Celgene in January said Abraxane helped patients with
advanced pancreatic cancer live an average of two months longer
than those treated with chemotherapy, according to a late-stage
study. Moreover, a significantly higher percentage of Abraxane
users survived for up to two years.
Patients who received Abraxane in combination with the
chemotherapy agent gemcitabine had a median overall survival of
8.5 months, compared with 6.7 months for patients who received
standard therapy of gemcitabine alone. The result was deemed to
be statistically significant.
Abraxane plus gemcitabine demonstrated a 59 percent increase
in one-year survival, 35 percent vs 22 percent. The combination
also doubled the percentage of patients who survived for two
years from the start of treatment, with 9 percent still alive
compared with 4 percent for gemcitabine alone.
Researchers said it was the first study in advanced
pancreatic cancer to report two-year survivors.