A drug has been found to slow the progression of kidney cancer in patients whose tumours returned after initial chemotherapy, according to researchers.
The drug, RAD-001 or Everolimus, manufactured by Novartis, may provide an option for patients with a difficult-to-treat cancers, the researchers said.
In a study of 400 kidney cancer patients, 272 were given the drug while the remaining 138 were given placebos.
After six months, tumours had not grown or spread in 26% of patients who got RAD-001, compared to 2% of the placebo group.
Independent monitors were so impressed by the results that they stopped the trial last February.
Dr Robert Motzer, of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York, who led the study, said: “This study has given us a new and clearly useful tool for treating renal cell tumours, and everolimus is an important step forward in terms of disease management and quality of life for patients living with this disease.”
Full details of the study will be presented at the ASCO annual meeting at the end of the month, while Novartis intends to file for regulatory approval later this year.
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