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Celgene's Abraxane will be available through the Cancer Drugs Fund in England.

M2 EQUITYBITES-August 4, 2017-Celgene's Abraxane will be available through the Cancer Drugs Fund in England

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The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has cleared the availability of Celgene's (NASDAQ: CELG) Abraxane (nab-Paclitaxel) through the Cancer Drugs Fund (CDF), Pharma Times reported on Friday.

The institute's decision means that adult patients with metastatic pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma could have access to Abraxane in combination with gemcitabine as a treatment option via the NHS in instances when other combination chemotherapies are unsuitable and they would otherwise have gemcitabine monotherapy.

Making the drug available through the CDF also enables more data to be collected so the institute can make a more informed decision about whether it is cost effective enough for routine commissioning.

The disease has one of the worst five-year survival rates of common cancers in England and Wales. The amount of people diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and surviving the disease beyond ten years is around the same it was in the 1970s, at 1%. However, results from the Phase III IMPACT trial revealed that Abraxane in combination with gemcitabine, when compared to gemcitabine monotherapy, increased median overall survival by 1.8 months.

In November 2015, NICE ruled that Abraxane would not be funded for routine NHS use, but the Welsh government overruled the decision, securing continued access for patients in the country, and Scotland made the drug available in February 2015. With the new NICE decision, all eligible pancreatic patients in the UK should have the option of being treated with the therapy.

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Date:Aug 4, 2017
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