Avastin gets EU nod for kidney cancer

Avastin marches on. As expected, European regulators approved the Roche drug as a first-line treatment for patients with advanced kidney cancer. That's the fourth cancer target for Avastin; the drug was already approved for use in colorectal, lung, and breast cancer in Europe.

The regulatory blessing was based on data showing that patients given Avastin in combination with interferon lived nearly twice as long without the disease progressing as those who got interferon alone. Avastin is one of Roche's fastest-growing drugs. In the first nine months of this year, sales grew by 41 percent to $2.56 billion.

Meanwhile, in the U.S., where Genentech markets the drug, an FDA advisory committee recommended against approving Avastin for use against breast cancer. The agency's final decision is expected in February.

- see this release from Roche
- read the CNN Money article