Cetuximab (Erbitux)

Cetuximab (IMC-C225—marketed under the name Erbitux) is a chimeric (mouse/human) monoclonal antibody, an epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) inhibitor, given by intravenous infusion for treatment of metastatic colorectal cancer and head and neck cancer.

 Cetuximab is indicated for the treatment of patients with epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-expressing, KRAS wild-type metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC), in combination with chemotherapy, and as a single agent in patients who have failed oxaliplatin- and irinotecan-based therapy and who are intolerant to irinotecan. The positive opinion from the Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) was received for mCRC 1st line use in May 2008

Cetuximab (Erbitux) is indicated for the treatment of patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck in combination with platinum-based chemotherapy for the 1st line treatment of recurrent and/or metastatic disease and in combination with radiation therapy for locally advanced disease. The positive CHMP opinion for this indication was received in October 2008.

A diagnostic immunohistochemistry assay (EGFR pharmDx) can be used to detect EGFR expression in the tumor material. Approximately 75% of patients with metastatic colorectal cancer have an EGFR-expressing tumor and are therefore considered eligible for treatment with cetuximab or panitumumab 

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