ROME, July 25, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
Oncaspar, indicated for the treatment of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, is one of the "orphan drugs" acquired by sigma tau group from the US Pharmaceutical Company Enzon in November 2009.
Acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) is a cancer of the white lymphoid blood cells, which under normal circumstances fight infections. This disease causes the body to produce abnormal and immature white blood cells that cannot accomplish this purpose. While ALL is most common in children, people can be diagnosed with ALL at any age with increased risk after age 45. Over the past 35 years, thanks to the advancement of research and the introduction of innovative therapeutic protocols including Oncaspar®, the overall five year survival rate for children with ALL has greatly improved from less than 5 percent in the 1960s to approximately 85 percent today.
The direct management of Oncaspar by the sigma tau group will have no impact on product availability.
About ONCASPAR® (pegaspargase):
While normal cells can produce amino acid asparagine, many leukemic cells are unable to produce this amino acid essential for their survival. L-asparaginase is often administered together with chemotherapy in patients with ALL to deplete levels of circulating asparagine in the blood. This asparagine depletion (starving the leukemic cells) ultimately results in leukemic cells death.
Sigma-Tau is a leading, all Italian capital, International pharmaceutical Group, founded in 1957, that invests in research, development and marketing of innovative and effective treatments to improve human well-being and quality of life.
Sigma-Tau has its headquarters in Pomezia (Rome, Italy), and subsidiaries in France, Switzerland, Belgium, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Germany, the UK, USA and India. The Group operates production facilities in USA (Indianapolis) and Spain. With 2400 employees and a global network of licensees, in 2011 Sigma-Tau achieved a global turnover of € 663 million.
Sigma-Tau consistently invests more than 10% of its annual turnover in R&D; featuring, as well, a very high number of patents. Sigma Tau's research and development projects (about 25) focus on: rare and neglected diseases, oncology, immune-oncology and biotechnology.
Website : http://www.sigma-tau.it
For additional information:
Sigma-Tau Communications and Information Manager
SOURCE Sigma-Tau Group