AstraZeneca’s battle against cancer knocks on door of EU with three new drugs
AstraZeneca, the pharmaceutical giant behind one of the world’s first Covid-19 vaccines, has had three new cancer drugs recommended for approval in the European Union.
The FTSE 100 pharma firm said its drug Imfinzi – for uses against biliary tract cancer alongside chemotherapy, gastric cancer medicine Enhertu and prostate cancer treatment Lynparza, in combination with Abiraterone, had been recommended for approval in the bloc.
Shares in AstraZeneca rose by 2.5 per cent to 10,868p per share by close of play today, building on a more than 10 per cent uptick into the green over the past month.
The company said the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) at the European Medicines Agency (EMA) based its positive opinion on Lynparza on late stage results published in June – showing the drug to reduce risk of disease progression or death by 34 per cent.
Meanwhile, AstraZeneca’s Imfinzi treatment reduced the risk of death by 20 per cent compared to chemotherapy alone, and Enhertu cut the risk of death by 40 per cent.
AstraZeneca has been doubling down on its oncology unit as the world embraces the tail end of the coronavirus pandemic.
Revenue in its oncology division rose more than 20 per cent in the third quarter, the company announced just last week. The results beat analysts expectations, as the company makes headway with its pandemic-era capital boost.
Imfinzi, which is already approved alongside chemotherapy for lung cancer in the US, has already brought in $737m (£625m) in its latest quarter. Analysts had initially forecast sales to fall around $725m (£615m).