Another NICE recommendation for melanoma drug Keytruda

Posted: 9 October 2015 |

This new recommendation for Keytruda is for treating advanced melanoma that has not been previously treated with ipilimumab…

The UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended MSD’s Keytruda (pembrolizumab) for treating advanced skin cancer in final draft guidance.


Earlier this week, NICE published final guidance recommending Keytruda as an option for the treatment of advanced melanoma after the disease has progressed with ipilimumab. This new recommendation is for treating advanced melanoma that has not been previously treated with ipilimumab.

Professor Gillian Leng, Deputy Chief Executive at NICE, said, “The incidence of malignant melanoma has increased fivefold since the mid-1970s in the UK, with around 37 new cases diagnosed every day.  We are, therefore, pleased to be able to recommend pembrolizumab as an option for some people with the disease that has not been previously treated with ipilimumab, in final draft guidance. I am sure this will be welcome news to patients and healthcare professionals alike.”

Commenting on the new recommendation, Deepak Khanna, senior vice president and regional president, Europe, MSD Oncology, said, “We are pleased that the UK government has recognised the value of Keytruda, and thank the government for its efforts to ensure that patients in the UK who have advanced melanoma have access to Keytruda as soon as possible. Merck has demonstrated our strong commitment to ensuring Keytruda would be available as quickly as possible to patients in the UK, and around the world. Since the first approval in the United States just more than a year ago, Keytruda has been approved in 39 countries, including throughout the European Union.”

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