The United States Food and Drug Administration approved Eli Lilly’s drug to treat a form of the most common type of lung cancer.
Eli Lilly is an American global pharmaceutical company with headquarters located in Indianapolis, Indiana. The company is publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange and is a member of the S&P 5 stock index.
Portrazza is a monoclonal antibody that blocks activity of a protein commonly found on squamous NSCLC tumors.
Portrazza can be used in combination with two forms of chemotherapy to treat patients with advanced squamous non-small cell lung cancer who have no received medication specifically for treating their advanced lung cancer before.
Lung cancer is the leading cause of death in the United States. According to the Food and Drug Administration there is an estimated 221,200 new diagnoses and 158,040 death in 2015.
The most common type of lung cancer is non-small cell lung cancer.
Non-small cell lung cancer is further divided into two main types, squamous cell and non-squamous cell. These two categories are named by the kinds of cells found in the cancer.
Lung cancer tumors can be different from one another, therefore treatment options need to be tailored towards the specific type of lung cancer in a particular patient. Portrazza provides certain patients with a new option that may extend survival.
In a multicenter, randomized, open-label clinical study, 1,093 patients who were taking Portrazza in combination with chemotherapy participated. On average the participants were found to live 11.5 months compared with 9.9 months for patients who were only receiving chemotherapy.
The most common side effects were skin rash and magnesium deficiency, which can cause muscular weakness, seizure and irregular heartbeats and can ultimately be fatal. Risks include cardiac arrest and sudden death.