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Erbitux Drug Fails In Colon Cancer Study That May Limit Its Use

BRIEF: Erbitux Drug Fails In Colon Cancer Study That May limit its use [The Indianapolis Star]

From Indianapolis Star (IN) (October 11, 2010)

Oct. 11--Eli Lilly & Co. and Merck KGaA’s Erbitux failed to help colon cancer patients in a study, which may leave doctors less likely to combine the drug with a certain type of chemotherapy, according to a Bloomberg report.

Erbitux didn’t slow or delay the progression of tumors and didn’t prolong patients’ lives, according to a study released Sunday at the European Society for Medical Oncology conference in Milan. Patients with a normal version of a gene called KRAS didn’t respond better than those with a mutation.

The results add to a growing body of evidence that Erbitux, known chemically as cetuximab, might not work in certain chemotherapy combinations, said Kjell Magne Tveit, an oncologist at Oslo University Hospital and a researcher on the study. The drug didn’t keep colon cancer at bay in a United Kingdom trial last year. That trial combined Erbitux with oxaliplatin, the same chemotherapy as in the study presented Sunday.

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Posted: October 2010