New Delhi: There's
new hope for colorectal cancer (CRC) patients with the US FDA
approving the first personalized therapy for its treatment. More
than 42,000 new CRC are estimated to occur in India in 2012,
The FDA nod for Erbitux is based on data from a large scale
patient study titled CRYSTAL (Cetuximab combined with iRinotecan
in first-line therapY for metaSTatic colorectAL cancer) conducted
outside the U.S, said an official release announcing the approval.
"The totality of the data from CRYSTAL, along with data from other
Erbitux trials, provide compelling and consistent evidence of the
benefit of Erbitux in the treatment of KRAS mutation negative
(wild-type) EGFR-expressing mCRC," said Ashok Vaid, Chairman of
the Medanta Cancer Institute, Gurgaon.
Colorectal cancer occurs when the disease has spread to at least
one distant organ and tissues, such as the liver, lungs, lining of
the abdomen or ovaries. Generally, only 12 percent of patients
affected with this form of the disease survive beyond five years.
However, once they were treated with cetuximab (Erbitux), combined
with the chemotherapy currently in use, the patients' survival
rate had gone up to as much as 20 percent and with significant
decrease in the risk of disease progression compared to patients
receiving only the present line of chemotherapy, found an analysis
of the study data against the advanced stage of cancer centres.