Merck KGaA suffers setback on cancer drug

July 5, 2012

German pharmaceuticals maker Merck KGaA said Thursday that phase III clinical trials of its gastric cancer drug Erbitux had shown no benefits for patients.

The trials found that in combination with standard chemotherapy, did not extend "the length of time that patients live without their disease getting worse," Merck KGaA said in a statement.

"We are disappointed that the ... trial did not show a benefit for patients with advanced gastric cancer when Erbitux was added to standard chemotherapy," said Florian Lordick, in charge of the clinical trials.

"Understandably, these results are disappointing for patients with advanced , and as a company we will continue to invest in oncology research and development to find new treatments for these diseases," said Merck's head of drug development, Annalisa Jenkins.

The results would not alter the proven utility of Erbitux in its already approved indications for metastatic and , Merck KGaA said.

The news hit Merck KGaA shares which were showing a loss of 0.38 percent at 79.65 euros in mid-morning trade on the Frankfurt stock exchange in a generally firmer market.

Explore further: High EGFR expression a predictor for improved survival with cetuximab plus chemotherapy

Related Stories

Recommended for you

'Jumonji' protein key to Ewing's sarcoma rampage

March 24, 2017

By the time Ewing's Sarcoma is diagnosed, primarily in teens and young adults, it has often spread from its primary site to other parts of the body, making it difficult to treat. A University of Colorado Cancer Center study ...

In a sample of blood, researchers probe for cancer clues

March 24, 2017

One day, patients may be able to monitor their body's response to cancer therapy just by having their blood drawn. A new study, led by bioengineers at UC Berkeley, has taken an important step in that direction by measuring ...

Researchers gain insight into breast cancer drug resistance

March 24, 2017

Breast cancer's ability to develop resistance to treatment has frustrated researchers and physicians and has thwarted even the latest and greatest targeted therapies. For example, after researchers identified a disease pathway ...

Is there a link between telomere length and cancer?

March 23, 2017

Telomeres are regions of repetitive DNA at the end of human chromosomes, which protect the end of the chromosome from damage. Whilst shorter telomeres are hypothesized biological markers of older age and have been linked ...

0 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.