December 20, 2018 / 8:01 AM / 4 months ago

AstraZeneca's ovarian cancer and anemia treatments meet goals in late-stage studies

FILE PHOTO: A man walks past a sign at an AstraZeneca site in Macclesfield, central England May 19, 2014. REUTERS/Phil Noble/File Photo

(Reuters) - British drugmaker AstraZeneca on Thursday said its ovarian cancer and anemia treatments met their goals in three separate late stage trials.

The positive results provide a shot in the arm for the company, which has lost several patents on its older drugs since 2012, wiping out more than half of its sales.

AstraZeneca said Lynparza, the company’s cancer drug being jointly developed with Merck & Co, improved response rates in patients with a form of relapsed ovarian cancer after chemotherapy.

The company’s anemia drug, Roxadustat, also met its main goal in two separate studies evaluating its effectiveness in improving hemoglobin count in patients undergoing dialysis and those who are not.

AstraZeneca said it plans to discuss results of the Lynparza study with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, which has already approved Lynparza as a first-line maintenance treatment for adults with a form of ovarian cancer.

Roxadustat, which AstraZeneca is developing with FibroGen, was recently approved in China before getting the green light by regulators in the United States and Europe, providing it with a path to consolidate its position in a key market.

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr

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