"Aromasin is the second new breast cancer treatment we've brought to patients
in just four months, and with this launch, Pharmacia & Upjohn is solidifying
its position as a global leader in cancer care," said Carrie Smith Cox,
executive vice president, Global Business Management. "We are pleased to be able
to offer both cytotoxic and hormonal breast cancer treatments that are not only
new and effective but also options that treat early- or late-stage breast
Unlike agents currently available, Aromasin is the first oral hormonal
therapy that binds irreversibly to the aromatase enzyme, an action that
interferes with the supply of estrogen to the cancerous tumors that are
dependent on the hormone.
The unique mechanism of action has prompted a prestigious cooperative cancer
study group to begin further study of Aromasin. The European Organization for
Research and Treatment of Cancer (EORTC) has recently concluded a randomized
Phase II trial of Aromasin versus tamoxifen as first line hormonal therapy in
postmenopausal breast cancer patients. The data from this trial has been
submitted to the American Society of Clinical Oncology for consideration for
their annual meeting.
Pharmacia & Upjohn gained FDA approval for Aromasin in the fourth quarter
of 1999. Aromasin is currently available in Switzerland, the United Kingdom,
Germany and the Nordic nations. Pharmacia & Upjohn anticipates Aromasin to
be available in France, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, Portugal and
Latin America by the middle of this year.
Like some other hormonal therapies, Aromasin should not be administered to
women with premenopausal endocrine status, or coadministered with
estrogen-containing agents that can interfere with its action. Adverse events
associated with Aromasin are typically mild to moderate and include hot flashes,
nausea and fatigue.