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AstraZeneca, Merck ovarian cancer treatment improves progression-free survival

FILE PHOTO: The company logo for pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca is displayed on a screen on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., April 8, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

(Reuters) – AstraZeneca Plc and Merck & Co Inc said on Monday their treatment for newly diagnosed advanced ovarian

cancer improved progression-free survival in patients tested in a late-stage study.

The study tested Lynparza in patients as an add-on to an already existing standard of care, bevacizumab, and was compared to a group of patients given bevacizumab alone.

The treatment showed a statistically significant and clinically meaningful improvement in progression-free survival in women with newly diagnosed advanced ovarian cancer, the companies said.

Lynparza added to bevacizumab reduced the risk of disease progression or death by 41% in the overall trial population.

The combination also improved progression-free survival to a median of 22.1 months compared to 16.6 months for those treated with bevacizumab alone, the companies said.

The treatment, which is being jointly developed and commercialized by AstraZeneca and Merck, is approved for the treatment of advanced ovarian cancer and metastatic breast cancer and has been used to treat over 25,000 patients worldwide.

The American Cancer Society expects about 22,530 women to be newly diagnosed with ovarian cancer in 2019.

Reporting by Aakash Jagadeesh Babu in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr

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