China's State Drug Administration has just given approval for the country's first domestically developed cancer treatment drug to enter the pharmaceutical market, ecns.cn reports.
The oral drug, which is called Fruquintinib, is reportedly effective for the treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer, also known as bowel or colon cancer.
Colorectal cancer is one of the most common cancers in the world, with 370,000 new cases reported each year, according to People’s Daily.
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Fruquintinib functions as an inhibitor of vascular endothelial growth factor receptors (VEGFR), developed as “a targeted therapy that is designed to cut off blood flow to solid tumors," according to Managed Care magazine.
The drug was produced at Shanghai Zhangjian Laboratory by Hutchison China MediTech Limited (Chi-Med), with the backing of both the Central and local government.
People's Daily also added that the drug took 12 years to develop, with over RMB1.5 billion invested in its creation.
The drug is expected to be rolled out in Shanghai over the next one to two months, and will likely be included in medical insurance packages. Chi-Med is also hopeful the drug will be approved in the US, with a phase one safety trial still pending.
[Cover image via Pixabay]