December 21, 2017 / 10:52 PM / in 2 months

UPDATE 1-Celgene's follicular lymphoma regimen fails clinical trial

(Adds details of trial)

Dec 21 (Reuters) - Celgene Corp said on Thursday it failed to show that combining its cancer drug Revlimid with the cancer drug rituximab was more effective in treating follicular lymphoma than the standard combination of rituximab and chemotherapy.

The clinical trial was the first to study a chemotherapy-free regimen in patients with previously untreated follicular lymphoma, a slow-growing form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Chemotherapy typically has harsher side effects than more targeted biologic treatments such as Revlimid and rituximab, which is sold by Roche Holding AG under the brand name Rituxan.

Results of the late-stage study showed that patients in the Revlimid cohort did not have a greater period of progression-free survival than the chemotherapy group, nor were there more patients who experienced a complete response to the treatment.

Michael Yee, an analyst at Jefferies, said the result “is not that big of a surprise, given that previous commentary from the company was somewhat mixed.”

Celgene shares fell 5.8 percent to $102.10 in extended trading. (Reporting by Tamara Mathias in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Jonathan Oatis)

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