The Swiss pharmaceutical giant, Roche, has filed an application with the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a new oral chemotherapy treatment for breast cancer.
The therapy is a combination of two drugs, Xeloda and Taxotere, which are already on the market.
Clinical trials have shown that the combination therapy is more effective than Taxotere alone. It improved survival rates significantly, and reduced the treatment time from six to four months.
The therapy is intended for women with locally advanced or metastatic breast cancer, who have not responded to previous chemotherapy.
Both Xeloda and Taxotere have been approved as monotherapy treatments for metastatic breast cancers in over 50 countries. Xeloda was also approved for market release last month as a treatment for colorectal cancer.
Roche expects to file a similar request with the European authorities within the next few months. More than 1.2 million people are diagnosed with breast cancer every year, and over 700,000 die from the disease according to the World Health Organisation.
swissinfo with agencies