FDA approves Bristol-Myers Squibb/ImClone’s drug for early cancer treatment


NEW YORK The Food and Drug Administration has given priority review to an application by Bristol-Myers Squibb and ImClone to sell the drug Erbitux as an initial treatment for head and neck cancers, the companies announced Thursday.

The drug is approved for treating head and neck cancer in advanced stages or whose head or neck cancer has spread or recurred despite chemotherapy treatment. The drug is a biologic known generically as cetuximab.

ImClone recently rejected an acquisition offer by Bristol-Myers Squibb, announcing that Eli Lilly had agreed to acquire the biotech company.

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