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NICE rejects Lilly lung cancer drug, recommends Bayer’s Xofigo and Amgen’s Imlygic

Published on 30/09/16 at 09:42am

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence has issued final guidance rejecting Eli Lilly’s Portrazza (necitumumab) for the treatment of locally advanced or metastatic epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-expressing squamous non-small-cell lung cancer, meaning sufferers of the illness will not have access to the drug on the NHS.

Despite Lilliy offering a patient access scheme for the product, NICE was not convinced of its cost-effectiveness for use on the NHS, with a price tag of £30,740 per course (excluding the cost of gemcitabine and cisplatin). The drug was also deemed unsuitable for the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF) as the company could not dispel various clinical uncertainties on its efficacy through current or future data collection.

Portrazza was approved in Europe in February as the first biologic option in this indication thanks to Phase III results showing increased survival rates in patients treated with the drug in addition to gemcitabine and cisplatin chemotherapy.

However, Bayer’s Xofigo received a recommendation for the treatment of hormone-relapsed prostate cancer, symptomatic bone metastases and no known visceral metastases in patients who have already received docetaxel or for which chemotherapy is not suitable, thanks in part to an access scheme agreed with the Department of Health.

Amgen’s Imlygic also received a thumbs-up from the organisation as a treatment option for unresectable, regionally or distantly metastatic (stage IIIB, IIIC or IVM1a) melanoma that has not spread to bone, brain, lung or other internal organs in patients receiving docetaxel.

Matt Fellows

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