Taxotere OK'd as induction therapy for new indication


Docetaxel approved for squamous cell head and neck cancer

Sanofi-Aventis' docetaxel (Taxotere) may now be used as induction therapy of locally advanced squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck. The drug recently received approval for the new indication from the FDA and should be used in combination with cisplatin and 5-fluorouracil before patients undergo chemoradiotherapy and surgery. The approval was based on results of the phase III TAX324 trial, which showed a relative risk of death that is 30% less after treatment with docetaxel-based regimen compared with patients receiving cisplatin and 5-FU alone (70.6 months vs. 30.1 months).

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