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MabThera/Rituxan: promising new data in leukemia and lymphatic cancers to be presented at the American Society of Hematology (ASH), the world’s leading meeting in blood cancers


More than 160 key abstracts confirm MabThera/Rituxan as the standard of care in hematological cancers

Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY) announced today that updated results of the pivotal phase III study, CLL8, will be one of many key presentations at the forthcoming 51st Annual Meeting of the American Society of Hematology (ASH) in New Orleans.

Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL) is the most common type of leukemia in adults, accounting for approximately 30-40% of all forms of leukemia in Western countries. The randomized CLL8 trial examines whether patients with previously untreated CLL live longer when they receive MabThera/Rituxan plus fludarabine and cyclophosphamide (FC) chemotherapy rather than FC alone. Initial results of the CLL8 trial were presented at ASH in 2008. The updated results of the CLL8 trial, which will feature in an oral presentation, are based on longer follow-up time.

A randomized Phase III study comparing MabThera/Rituxan with two different chemotherapy regimens as first-line treatment of patients with advanced follicular, indolent and mantle cell lymphomas, will be highlighted in the official ASH press programme. Abstracts selected for inclusion in the press programme are those identified by ASH as congress highlights.

More than 40 abstracts are being presented in oral sessions and 120 in poster sessions covering trials that show the essential role MabThera/Rituxan plays in the treatment of CLL, diffuse large B-cell lymphoma, and indolent non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, among others. The data confirms MabThera/Rituxan as the standard of care in hematological cancers, with over 1.9 million patient exposures recorded worldwide since MabThera/Rituxan launch in 1997.
About Roche

Headquartered in Basel, Switzerland, Roche is a leader in research-focused healthcare with combined strengths in pharmaceuticals and diagnostics. Roche is the world’s largest biotech company with truly differentiated medicines in oncology, virology, inflammation, metabolism and CNS. Roche is also the world leader in in-vitro diagnostics, tissue-based cancer diagnostics and a pioneer in diabetes management. Roche’s personalised healthcare strategy aims at providing medicines and diagnostic tools that enable tangible improvements in the health, quality of life and survival of patients.

In 2008, Roche had over 80,000 employees worldwide and invested almost 9 billion Swiss francs in R&D. The Group posted sales of 45.6 billion Swiss francs. Genentech, United States, is a wholly owned member of the Roche Group. Roche has a majority stake in Chugai Pharmaceutical, Japan. For more information:

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