Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG said that its Tecentriq immunotherapy in combination with Avastin and chemotherapy was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration the first-line treatment for a type of lung cancer.
The approval was based on results from a late-stage study, which showed the Tecentriq regimen helped patients with metastatic non-squamous non-small cell lung cancer live significantly longer, compared with Avastin and chemotherapy, the company said in a statement.
The drug on Wednesday had also won priority review from the U.S. regulator for treating patients with untreated extensive-stage small cell lung cancer.
Tecentriq is already approved in the United States to treat certain types of lung cancers, as well as a type of bladder and urinary tract cancer.
The drug, however, has trailed Merck’s Keytruda and Bristol Myers Squibb’s Opdivo in revenue as those medicines beat it to market in other indications.
An estimated 234,000 Americans will be diagnosed with lung cancer in 2018, with non-small cell lung cancer accounting for 85 per cent of all lung cancers, the drugmaker said, citing data from American Cancer Society.