[MOL] PHOTOFRIN receives approval for Lung Cancer in Canada..... [00713] Medicine On Line

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[MOL] PHOTOFRIN receives approval for Lung Cancer in Canada.....

Photofrin Receives Approval For Lung Cancer In Canada

VANCOUVER, BC -- July 16, 1999 -- QLT PhotoTherapeutics Inc. announced that it has received clearance from the Canadian Health Protection Branch to market its proprietary light-activated drug PhotofrinŽ (sterile porfimer sodium) as a treatment for certain early and late-stage lung cancers. Photofrin is already approved in Canada for the treatment of certain esophageal and bladder cancers.
Specifically, photodynamic therapy with Photofrin received clearance for the reduction of obstruction and palliation of symptoms in patients with completely or partially obstructing endobronchial nonsmall cell lung cancer; and treatment of superficial endobronchial nonsmall cell lung cancer (carcinoma in situ or microinvasive tumors) in patients for whom surgery and radiotherapy are not indicated.

Photofrin is the world’s first and only approved photodynamic therapy drug, and is now used in the treatment of a number of cancers throughout parts of North America, Europe and Japan. There are currently over 129 cancer centers performing photodynamic therapy using Photofrin around the world.

Photodynamic therapy with Photofrin is also in Phase III clinical testing at approximately 35 centers in North America and Europe to treat the advanced form of Barrett’s esophagus. Barrett’s esophagus is a pre-cancerous condition which occurs when the lining of the esophagus converts to stomach-type tissue in response to chronic acid reflux, or heartburn. For patients with advanced Barrett’s, other than surgical removal of the esophagus, there are currently no approved treatments for this condition.





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