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4-Traders Homepage  >  Equities  >  London Stock Exchange  >  AstraZeneca plc    AZN   GB0009895292

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UK Health Watchdog Backs Lung Cancer Drug From Roche

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05/10/2012 | 01:16am CEST

The U.K.'s health-care watchdog said in final draft guidance Thursday that it is recommending the use of Roche Holding AG's (ROG.VX) Tarceva as a treatment option for advanced-stage lung-cancer patients.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence, known as NICE, decides what medicines should be used in the U.K.'s publicly-funded National Health Service. It said the drug--whose chemical name is erlotinib--is a cost-effective use of NHS resources.

NICE, which has already recommended AstraZeneca PLC's (>> AstraZeneca plc) Iressa, or gefitinib, for non-small-cell lung cancer, said that while there isn't any trial data directly comparing the two drugs, clinical specialists say the drugs are "very similar and equally as effective."

"We are pleased to be able to recommend another treatment option for this stage of the disease," said NICE Director Carole Longson.

The watchdog said its decision to back the drug came after it requested more information about it from the Swiss drug maker.

Roche wasn't immediately available for comment.

NICE said the draft guidance is now with consultees, who have the opportunity to appeal against it.

-By Marta Falconi, Dow Jones Newswires; +41 43 443 8043; marta.falconi@dowjones.com

Stocks mentioned in the article : AstraZeneca plc, AstraZeneca plc
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Financials ($)
Sales 2016 23 169 M
EBIT 2016 5 728 M
Net income 2016 2 609 M
Debt 2016 11 639 M
Yield 2016 4,35%
P/E ratio 2016 32,17
P/E ratio 2017 29,31
EV / Sales 2016 7,99x
EV / Sales 2017 8,17x
Capitalization 173 471 M
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Average target price 69,1 $
Spread / Average Target 6,4%
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Pascal Soriot Chief Executive Officer & Executive Director
Leif Valdemar Johansson Non-Executive Chairman
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Marc Dunoyer Chief Financial Officer & Executive Director
Edward Bradley Senior VP-Research & Development
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