Processing Magazine

Pfizer Lung Cancer Pill May Double Survival

June 6, 2011

The Associated Press reports that a much-anticipated drug for advanced lung cancer from Pfizer Inc. appears to double survival over standard drugs against tumors with a certain genetic mutation, according to research. The drug, called crizotinib, would be the first targeted treatment for the roughly 50,000 people who get this cancer each year worldwide. It might eventually produce annual revenue for Pfizer exceeding $2 billion. The first overall survival data for patients with advanced non-small cell lung cancer treated with the drug, called crizotinib, showed 74 percent were still alive after a year and 54 percent after two years, researchers announced at a cancer specialists conference. Median overall survival, a key measure, hasn''t been determined because more than half the 82 patients are still alive. The early-phase study did not include a direct comparison group. But among similar patients getting standard cancer drugs in other research, 44 percent survived for a year and just 12 percent were alive after two years.