'The pretzel' (courtesy Janssen)

Cor­rect­ed: 'A piece of plas­tic with a 40-year-old drug in it': J&J touts promis­ing ear­ly da­ta for blad­der can­cer treat­ment

This sto­ry was cor­rect­ed to re­flect up­dat­ed da­ta with a lat­er cut­off date.

In an ear­ly cut of da­ta, John­son & John­son said Sun­day af­ter­noon that 16 of 22 pa­tients who re­ceived its ex­per­i­men­tal blad­der can­cer treat­ment — a decades-old chemother­a­py de­liv­ered in a de­vice which its de­vel­op­ers call “the pret­zel” — saw their tu­mors go away.

The Phase II study, known as Sun­RISe-1, looked at pa­tients with non–mus­cle-in­va­sive blad­der can­cer (mean­ing that their can­cer has not in­fil­trat­ed their blad­der wall) who did not re­spond to Bacil­lus Cal­mette-Guérin, or BCG, the stan­dard-of-care treat­ment.

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