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IRESSA Receives Marketing Authorization for the Treatment of Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer in Europe

Published: Tuesday, July 07, 2009
Last Updated: Tuesday, July 07, 2009
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European Commission grants marketing authorization for the oral anti-cancer drug.

AstraZeneca announced has that the European Commission has granted marketing authorization for the oral anti-cancer drug, IRESSA for the treatment of adults with locally advanced or metastatic non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) with activating mutations of EGFR-TK across all lines of therapy.

The authorization is based on a submission package including two pivotal Phase III studies comparing IRESSA with chemotherapy, IPASS and INTEREST.

IRESSA acts by inhibiting the tyrosine kinase enzyme in the EGFR, thus blocking the transmission of signals involved in the growth and spread of tumors. A mutation in the EGFR is a characteristic occurring in 10-15% of lung cancers in non-Asians, and studies have shown that these types of tumors are particularly sensitive to IRESSA.

Anders Ekblom, Executive Vice President for Development at AstraZeneca, said: "IRESSA is the first truly targeted treatment for lung cancer, and the EU marketing authorization represents an important step forward in the treatment of this devastating disease. For the first time, patients with EGFR mutation positive tumors will have a more effective and better tolerated alternative to chemotherapy as a first-line treatment.”

AstraZeneca will work closely with clinicians and pathology groups on a country-by-country basis to facilitate appropriate access to EGFR mutation diagnostic testing.

AstraZeneca has agreed to conduct a Follow-up Measure Study to generate further data in a Caucasian NSCLC patient population and is currently in discussion with the EMEA to finalize the study design and endpoints.

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