AstraZeneca receives a boost after two liver cancer treatments get the green light


AstraZeneca receives a boost after two liver cancer treatments get the green light

  • The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave the green light for the FTSE 100 pharma firm’s Imjudo and Imfinzi drugs 
  • They can be used together to treat unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma, the most common type of liver cancer
  • Liver cancer is the sixth most commonly diagnosed cancer in the world and causes around 5,800 deaths in the UK every year, Cancer Research said

AstraZeneca received a boost from its drug pipeline after US regulators approved two of its treatments for use in patients suffering from liver cancer. 

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) gave the green light for the FTSE 100 pharma firm’s Imjudo and Imfinzi drugs to be used together to treat unresectable hepatocellular carcinoma, the most common type of liver cancer. 

Liver cancer is the sixth most commonly diagnosed cancer in the world and causes around 5,800 deaths in the UK every year, Cancer Research said. 

AstraZeneca received a boost from its drug pipeline after US regulators approved two of its treatments for use in patients suffering from liver cancer

The FDA decision follows results of a clinical trial which showed the drug combination caused a 22 per cent drop in death risk compared to sorafenib, a medicine used to treat liver and types of thyroid cancer. 

The trial also showed 31 per cent of patients treated with Imjudo and Imfinzi were still alive after three years, compared to 20 per cent of those that received sorafenib. 

Imjudo and Imfinzi contain two different types of antibodies which allow the body’s immune system to kill cancer cells more effectively. 

Analysts at broker Shore Capital noted the approval highlighted the ‘expanding scope’ for Imfinzi to be used to combat gastrointestinal cancers. AstraZeneca shares rose 0.6 per cent, or 62p, to 9782p after the news. 

It follows a string of regulatory successes for AstraZeneca, which has been focused on its drug pipeline after a sales boost from its Covid jab. 

Its share price has risen by nearly 10pc over the last 12 months – making it the second-most valuable firm on the London Stock Exchange after oil giant Shell. 

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