(Adds details on secondary benefits from drug, updates shares)
June 11 Eli Lilly and Co's recently
approved stomach cancer drug Cyramza failed to prolong the lives
of patients with advanced liver cancer in a late-stage trial,
the drugmaker said on Wednesday.
Patients enrolled in the trial previously had failed to
benefit from standard chemotherapy for liver cancer.
"Liver cancer is a very difficult-to-treat tumor type and no
Phase III study has been able to demonstrate improved survival
in the second-line setting," Lilly said in a release.
Although Cyramza failed to meet the primary survival goal of
the trial, Lilly said meaningful improvements were seen in
secondary goals of the study, including tumor shrinkage and how
long it took for patient conditions to worsen after treatment.
Moreover, Lilly said some specific populations seemed
especially to benefit from treatment with its drug.
Lilly said it plans to discuss the overall results with
health regulators, given the favorable secondary trends seen in
the 565-patient international trial and the absence of any
approved second-line treatments for liver cancer.
Cyramza also failed in an earlier study to improve outcomes
for patients with breast cancer.
But the drug has proven effective in a late-stage trial
against the most common form of lung cancer, and Lilly is also
testing it against colorectal cancer.
Investment bank Cowen and Co has predicted Cyramza will
generate annual sales of $1.2 billion by 2020, assuming it is
approved for at least one additional type of cancer, beyond
Lilly shares slipped 0.2 percent to $59.61 in morning
trading on the New York Stock Exchange, in line with declines
for the drug sector.
(Reporting by Ransdell Pierson; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and