December 21, 2018 / 7:30 PM / 9 months ago

CORRECTED-UPDATE 1-Merck KGaA-Pfizer to end late-stage ovarian cancer treatment study

(Corrects paragraph 3 to say trial was “last year”, not “last month”)

Dec 21 (Reuters) - Merck KGaA and Pfizer Inc said on Friday they were ending a late-stage study for their drug, Bavencio, to treat a form of ovarian cancer in previously untreated patients.

The results showed the drug in combination with, or as a follow-on treatment to, platinum-based chemotherapy could not achieve the primary goal of progression-fee survival in patients. Bavencio, or avelumab, failed to prolong lives in a separate trial last year evaluating the immunotherapy in gastric cancer patients. The companies said detailed results would be shared with the scientific community and that health authorities had been informed of the decision to discontinue the trial. Every year, more than 295,000 women are diagnosed with ovarian cancer worldwide, and the disease is generally advanced when it is diagnosed, as it often has few to no symptoms at the early stages, the companies said.

Reporting by Aakash Jagadeesh Babu in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur

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