July 8, 2008

NICE Recommends Against GSK’s Oral Cancer Drug

The National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence has advised against the use of GlaxoSmithKline's oral cancer drug Tyverb in the UK's National Health Service, reported the Financial Times.

According to the Financial Times, The National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has issued a provisional recommendation that Tyverb for advanced breast cancer failed to meet its threshold for clinical and cost effectiveness.

GSK tried to negotiate a 'risk-sharing' arrangement with the Department of Health, by which it would have only charged for the drug as a proportion of the patients estimated to have benefited significantly. However, Nice contended that based on data provided by GSK, the costs of Tyverb far outweigh the clinical benefits that it estimated at the equivalent of nearly $41,000 a patient a year.

The Financial Times quoted GSK as saying: "Recent evaluations of other cancer medicines have shown that demonstrating cost effectiveness in end-stage cancers is particularly challenging. Tyverb offers hope of slowing the disease to patients with advanced breast cancer who have few treatment options left."