Avastin wins new regulatory approval

Watch a blockbuster cancer drug become a behemoth: Roche has won European regulatory approval for treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer with Avastin. The approval came on the strength of trials that showed "improved survival benefits beyond one year in NSCLC patients," the company said. It's the first new treatment for NSCLC in more than 10 years that's demonstrated an ability to extend patients' lives.

This is Avastin's third indication for cancer treatment in Europe. Previously the drug has been used to treat metastatic colorectal cancer and breast cancer there; in the U.S. it's also approved for NSCLC. Roche is exploring its use in pancreatic and ovarian cancers, among others. Already this year, Avastin sales have topped $1.5 billion, 40 percent higher than last year's first-half figures.

- see this announcement on the approval
- check out the AP report

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