Roche trial finds new drug cocktail cuts breast cancer deaths


A woman walks under a canopy of umbrellas erected outside the Public Health Ministry, part of a campaign aiming at raising awareness of breast cancer prevention, in Beirut, Lebanon, on Sept 30, 2016. (Reuters photo)

ZURICH - Roche's bid to shield its ageing but lucrative oncology franchise from cheaper copies got a lift from a trial showing a new drug cocktail kept breast cancer patients alive longer.

Combining its drug Perjeta with Herceptin and chemotherapy after surgery cut recurrence of an aggressive type of early breast cancer or death compared to Herceptin and chemo, the Swiss pharmaceuticals giant said in a statement on Thursday.

Shares in the world's biggest maker of cancer drugs were higher, although analysts advised caution given Roche gave few specifics. It pledged more details at a 2017 medical conference.

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