Novartis says EU approves expanded use of Glivec

Swiss pharmaceutical group Novartis said Monday the European Union will allow it to expand its use of the drug Glivec to treat certain rare forms of gastrointestinal cancer.

The European Commission approved an update to the Glivec label to include 36 months of treatment after surgery "for adults with KIT (CD117)-positive (GIST)," Novartis said in a statement.

"Gastrointestinal stromal tumors are a rare, life-threatening cancer of the ," it said.

They are often difficult to diagnose and treat because they may not cause physical symptoms.

The cancers are usually diagnosed in patients aged between 55 and 65, and are characterised by tumors of connective tissue supporting the digestive tract.

Last year Novartis said sales of Glivec reached $4.7 billion (3.5 billion euros).

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

'Rare' cancers in the spotlight at major European conference

Feb 24, 2010

More should be done across Europe to ensure that people with rare forms of cancer are not denied access to the best possible treatment, say the organizers of a major European cancer conference to be held in Milan on 9 and ...

Drug shows promise as new treatment for gut tumor

Jan 11, 2010

A drug that is already an approved therapy for some cancers also might be an effective secondary treatment for a rare tumor of the gastrointestinal tract, according to a team led by researchers from the University of Pittsburgh ...

Recommended for you

US approves new, hard-to-abuse hydrocodone pill (Update)

Nov 20, 2014

U.S. government health regulators on Thursday approved the first hard-to-abuse version of the painkiller hydrocodone, offering an alternative to a similar medication that has been widely criticized for lacking ...

Soaring generic drug prices draw Senate scrutiny

Nov 20, 2014

Some low-cost generic drugs that have helped restrain health care costs for decades are seeing unexpected price spikes of up to 8,000 percent, prompting a backlash from patients, pharmacists and now Washington ...

Only half of patients take their medications as prescribed

Nov 20, 2014

The cost of patients not taking their medications as prescribed can be substantial in terms of their health. Although a large amount of research evidence has tried to address this problem, there are no well-established ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.