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Roche drug gets NICE recommendation

Roche has announced that the National Institute of Clinical Excellence has recommended its drug, NeoRecormon
Roche has announced that the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) has recommended its drug, NeoRecormon.

It has been developed for the treatment of chemotherapy-induced anaemia and will be used in combination with intravenous iron. NeoRecormon is one of many erythropoietic proteins (EPOs) that have been given NICE authorisation that can be prescribed to women suffering from low levels of blood after undergoing chemotherapy for ovarian cancer.

Dr Paul Cornes, consultant clinical oncologist at the Bristol Haematology and Oncology Centre, said: "The positive NICE guidance for EPOs offers women with ovarian cancer who are treated with platinum-based chemotherapy another option which could improve their quality of life, help conserve scarce blood resources and reduce the risk of transfusion associated infection."

Symptoms of chemotherapy-induced anaemia include severe fatigue which can significantly affect a patient's standard of living and their ability to perform normal daily tasks. Nurses have reported that some patients elect to discontinue their chemotherapy because of the crippling side effects and the impact they can have on their life.

Blood transfusions are currently the only way to treat chemotherapy-induced anaemia but the number of blood donors are decreasing, forcing clinicians and researchers to find alternative methods. NeoRecormon and other EPOs could prove to be a step forward in helping women going through arduous chemotherapy regimens for ovarian cancer.

28th May 2008

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