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Onyx Drug Fails Lung Cancer Study: BioBuzz

Nexavar fails to prolong survival in a second pivotal study of newly diagnosed lung cancer patients.

EMERYVILLE, Calif. (

TheStreet

) --

Onyx Pharmaceuticals

(ONXX)

and the German drug firm

Bayer

said Monday that their cancer drug Nexavar failed to prolong the survival of lung cancer patients in a phase III study.

This is the second time that Nexavar has failed to help patients live longer in a late-stage lung cancer study.

Monday's results came from the so-called "Nexus" study, which tested Nexavar plus the chemotherapy drugs cisplatin and gemcitabine against the chemo combination on its own in patients with newly diagnosed non-small cell lung cancer. Treatment with Nexavar did not help patients live longer -- the study's primary endpoint -- although the time before patients' tumors started to grow again was extended, the companies said.

A previous phase III lung cancer study of Nexavar combined with a different chemo regimen similarly failed to boost patient survival. The companies said Monday that additional clinical studies in lung cancer continue.

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Nexavar is approved for the treatment of kidney cancer and liver cancer.

Onyx is expected to release top-line results from a pivotal study of its multiple myeloma drug carfilzomib later this year.

Onyx shares closed Friday at $22.83.

-- Reported by Adam Feuerstein in Boston.

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Adam Feuerstein writes regularly for TheStreet.com. In keeping with TSC's editorial policy, he doesn't own or short individual stocks, although he owns stock in TheStreet.com. He also doesn't invest in hedge funds or other private investment partnerships. Feuerstein appreciates your feedback;

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