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Lung Cancer Treatment Breakthrough: Experimental Therapy 40% Better Than Chemotherapy At Preventing Death

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Feels like progress:

Researchers presented the results from their phase three clinical trial at the European Society for Medical Oncology congress this weekend in Copenhagen, Denmark. Their experimental treatment, a synthesized antibody that triggers the immune system into attacking tumor cells, proved to be a clear winner over conventional chemotherapy for patients with advanced non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC).

Previously untreated patients given the drug, called pembrolizumab, responded more often, lived longer, and had less signs of disease progression by the ten month mark than did patients given chemotherapy. The results were so stark that researchers halted the trial early so every patient could switch onto pembrolizumab. The findings were simultaneously published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

"Remember this day. It's a new day for lung cancer treatment," Dr. Stefan Zimmermann, an oncologist at the University Hospital in Lausanne, Switzerland, commented to reporters at the conference announcing the trial results, according to Reuters.

The research:

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