A pill for advanced kidney cancer described as "an important step" for future treatment has been launched in the UK.
Axitinib, marketed as Inlyta, is one of a new generation of drugs that cut off the blood supply to tumours.
In a late-stage phase-three trial, axitinib lengthened the time tumours stopped growing by 45pc compared with a standard treatment.
All 723 patients with advanced renal cell carcinoma had stopped responding to previous treatments. Dr Tom Powles, consultant oncologist at Barts Health NHS Trust in London, said: "Today's news marks an important step for the future treatment of patients with this cancer.
"The data supporting the treatment of patients with axitinib after progression. . . is very encouraging."
But at an estimated cost of £3,000 (€3,725) per month, it remains to be seen whether axitinib is made widely available on the NHS in the UK.