The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given the approval for a new Pfizer drug which will be useful for treating certain group of lung cancer patients having specific genetic mutation.
The drug called Xalkori has been given the approval along with the accompanying diagnostic test by a unit of Abbott Laboratories (ABT.N) which will be identifying who are the patients who will be benefiting from the treatment.

This drug will be targeting a small division of the lung cancer patients having advanced non-small cell lung cancer with a specific genetic mutation. This will be translating to around 6000 to 10000 patients in the United States annually.

In addition to the U.S. it is also reported that in the European Medicines Agency also Pfizer has made the application to get the approval.

It is informed that it is possible for Xalkori to finally touch the peak sale of $2.5 billion on an annual basis.

Certainly it is going to be expensive with a monthly cost of $9600. At the same time Pfizer has reported that it is developing a program by which an eligible patient having a private insurance will be able to have the drug at $100 co-pay for a month.

Overall, lung cancer is responsible for more deaths each year worldwide than any other type of cancer, said Pfizer CEO Ian Read in a statement. He added, Xalkori is an advance in the treatment of this devastating illness, providing a new therapeutic option for a subset of patients with the disease.

The most common side effects of the drug include were nausea, diarrhea, swelling, constipation and vision disorders like flashes of light or blurred vision.

The drug priority review has been granted by FDA for the drug. This is pointing to the fact that this drug is deemed to be an important advancement when compared to the therapies which are presently available.