New drug approved to treat kidney cancer

It's been a productive few years in kidney cancer for the Food and Drug Administration. Since 2005, the FDA has approved six drugs to treat kidney cancer--three in the past eight months alone, the latest being Votrient (pazopanib).Word came late Monday that the agency approved the oral drug for advanced renal cell carcinoma, only two weeks after a panel that advises the FDA recommended the agency give the drug the green light. (Check out CURE's coverage of the ODAC recommendation.)The other targeted drugs approved for kidney cancer include Sutent (sunitinib), Nexavar (sorafenib), Torisel (temsirolimus), Afinitor (everolimus), which was approved in March, and Avastin (bevacizumab), which received the FDA nod in August.At a conference I attended earlier this year, kidney cancer expert Robert Figlin, MD, made a prediction: Afinitor and Avastin would be approved for kidney cancer in 2009. Check, and check. And within two years, he said, pazopanib would get the thumbs up. I guess the FDA didn't want to wait. By the way, Figlin made another prediction about a drug called axitinib; we'll keep you posted.Read CURE's extensive coverage of the latest in treating kidney cancer in "Reining in Renal Cancer" from the Summer 2009 issue.