26. July 2011 15:40
Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) has received approval from the European Commission for Yervoy (ipilimumab), to treat patients with previously-treated advanced melanoma.
Yervoy, an immunotherapy, demonstrated long-term survival in patients with advanced melanoma in a randomised, double-blind Phase III study.
The new treatment uses immuno-oncology to indirectly target the tumour by stimulating the patient’s immune system to recognise and eliminate cancer cells.
Ron Cooper, President of Bristol-Myers Squibb Europe, stated: “The European Union approval of Yervoy is a milestone for patients with advanced disease and is the first outcome of Bristol-Myers Squibb's commitment to immuno-oncology.”
The one and two-year estimated survival rates for patients treated with Yervoy were 46% and 24% respectively.
BMS will now work with local health authorities to make Yervoy available across the European Union.
Prior to approval, BMS provided Yervoy to almost 3,000 patients throughout Europe through Compassionate Use/Named Patients Programmes.