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Pfizer’s failed blood-cancer drug helped leukemia patients, study finds

December 15, 2011
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SAN DIEGO — According to a study released Wednesday at the American Society of Hematology meeting in San Diego, Pfizer Inc.’s blood-cancer drug Mylotarg, which was pulled from shelves last year after being linked to deaths, helped patients with acute myeloid leukemia live longer, Bloomberg reported.

Patients newly diagnosed with acute myeloid leukemia who received Mylotarg with chemotherapy lived for 25 months after treatment, compared with 15 months for those given chemotherapy alone, according to the study.

The Food and Drug Administration requested the company stop selling the therapy in 2010 after a clinical trial showed it didn’t help patients and was tied to deaths from liver complications.

The drug must be resubmitted to the FDA with the new data before it could return to the U.S. market.
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