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An anti-cancer drug, osimertinib, has been shown to be effective in a phase 3 trial, halving the risk of death for patients with lung cancer.

Presented at the annual meeting of the American society of clinical oncology (ASCO) which is currently being held in Chicago (United States), the results of the phase 3 study of a new targeted therapy against cancer of the lung are particularly encouraging.

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This clinical trial was conducted on 680 patients with stage 1B to 3A lung cancer in more than twenty countries, including France. All had undergone a complete removal of the tumor, before taking daily either the molecule osimertinib (marketed under the name of Tagrisso), or a placebo.

A survival rate of 88% at 5 years

The results of this stage 3 trial showed a “statistically significant and clinically significant improvement in survival compared to placebo in the treatment of patients with early stage non-small cell lung cancer”. Tagrisso reduced the risk of death in patients by 51% compared to placebo.

“88% of patients treated with this new targeted therapy were alive 5 years after the start of treatment compared to 78% in patients who received the placebo” underlines the Astra Zeneca laboratory.

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