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FDA to Give Avastin Faster Brain Cancer Review

Wed, 05/06/2009 - 4:31am
SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration granted an accelerated review to Roche's cancer drug Avastin as a treatment for glioblastoma, a type of brain cancer, Genentech Inc. said Wednesday. Avastin was developed by Genentech and sold through a partnership with Roche. Switzerland-based Roche agreed to buy Genentech in March. The FDA granted the accelerated review because it has been more than 10 years since a new treatment for glioblastoma was approved, according to Genentech. A late stage trial of Avastin in glioblastoma is being planned, but Genentech said there is currently no data showing the drug reduces symptoms or improves survival. The test will involve patients whose cancer has progressed despite other forms of treatment. The company said about 10,000 people in the U.S. have glioblastoma, and tumors usually come back after initial treatment. Avastin is approved a treatment for various forms of colon, breast and lung cancers. Last month, the company said the drug failed to stop early stage colon cancer.
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