Merck highlights crucial hit for Keytruda in second-line esophageal carcinoma — but there are also 2 misses
Merck has unveiled a Phase III data package backing Keytruda’s case as a second-line treatment for the tough indications of esophageal and esophagogastric junction carcinoma, underscoring its earlier confidence that the PD-1 inhibitor represents a significant advance in this field despite only hitting one of three primary endpoints.
The key number the company wants to focus on is 31% — the degree by which Keytruda reduced the risk of death compared to chemotherapy in patients with squamous cell carcinoma or adenocarcinoma, who had progressed after standard therapy and whose tumors expressed PD-L1 (as quantified by a combined positive score, or CPS, of 10 or above).
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