Lilly’s Cyramza fails in liver cancer trial

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Eli Lilly and Co’s recently approved stomach drug Cyramza failed prolong lives patients advanced liver in a late-stage trial, drugmaker said on Wednesday.

Patients enrolled in trial previously had failed benefit from standard for liver .

“Liver cancer is a very difficult--treat tumor type and no Phase III study has been able demonstrate improved survival in the second-line setting,” Lilly said in a .

Although Cyramza failed to meet the primary survival goal the trial, Lilly said meaningful improvements were seen in secondary goals the study, including tumor shrinkage and how long took for patient conditions to worsen after treatment.

Moreover, Lilly said some specific populations seemed especially to benefit from treatment its drug.

Lilly said to discuss the overall results regulators, given the favorable secondary trends seen in the 565-patient international trial and the absence any approved second-line treatments for liver cancer.

Cyramza also failed in an earlier study to outcomes for patients with breast cancer.

But the drug has proven effective in a late-stage trial against the most common form of lung cancer, and Lilly is also testing against colorectal cancer.

Investment bank Cowen and Co has predicted Cyramza generate annual sales of $1.2 billion by 2020, assuming it is approved for at least one additional type of cancer, beyond stomach cancer.

Lilly shares slipped 0.2 percent to $59.61 in morning trading on the New York Stock , in line with declines for the drug sector. (Reuters)