The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently approved Afinitor, a new drug from Novartis that is designed to treat progressive, nonfunctional gastrointestinal (GI) as well as lung neuroendocrine tumors (NET).
This is the first treatment that has been approved for lung NET. It is also the first oral therapy that has been approved for GI NET. Thanks to these approvals, the drug will be able to fulfill the unmet needs of patients who have these rare cancers.
Afinitor is available in the form of tablets. Patients with locally advanced, unresectable or metastatic NETs may use the treatment for find relief.
NETs are a specific, rare cancer that happens within neuroendocrine cells in the body, typically settling in the lungs, GI tract or pancreas, causing serious illness. Afinitor has approval to be used inside the U.S. to treat all three of these variations.
"Afinitor is the first treatment approved for progressive, nonfunctional NET of lung origin and one of very few options available for progressive, nonfunctional GI NET, representing a shift in the treatment paradigm for these cancers," Bruno Strigini, president of Novartis Oncology, said. "We are proud of our Afinitor development program, which has translated to meaningful benefits for patients with several different cancers and rare diseases."