Boehringer’s Giotrif gets wider lung cancer use in Europe

Boehringer Ingelheim’s Giotrif (afatinib) oral lung cancer drug has a widened use in Europe after it was approved for patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the lung.

Approval means Giotrif is approved in the second largest sub-type of non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) representing around 20-30% of cases.

The full indication is for treatment of patients with advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the lung, whose disease has progressed on or after treatment with platinum-based chemotherapy.

Approval was based on results of the LUX-Lung 8 study, which chowed significantly improved overall survival compared with Roche’s rival Tarceva (erlotinib).

Results showed Giotrif reduced risk of progression by 19% and reduced the risk of death by 19% compared with Tarceva, with similar rates of similar adverse events.

Some side effects were more common with Giotrif, however, such as severe diarrhoea, which occurred in 10% of Giotrif patients compared with 2% of Tarceva patients.

Giotrif, which according to a GlobalData forecast could generate annual sales of $688 million in 2022, is already approved in more than 60 countries for EGFR mutation positive NSCLC.

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