Showcasing our ambition in oncology at the 2018 ASCO Annual Meeting

WRITTEN BY

David Fredrickson Executive Vice-President, Global Head Oncology Business Unit

At the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting kicking off in Chicago this weekend, AstraZeneca is showcasing the latest developments from our research programmes in oncology at a particularly special moment. As we continue to demonstrate our ability to push the boundaries of science, we’re following up a banner year of scientific and commercial milestones with all the ongoing research that is driving our growth.

Underpinning our presentations at this year’s meeting is our commitment to delivering on the science that has generated four new medicines in four years and 16 regulatory approvals across major markets in the last 12 months alone. It is rewarding to reinforce this commercial leadership with a particularly robust development presence: 14 oral presentations, including seven “Best of ASCO” presentations, from more than 90 total accepted abstracts. 

I am particularly eager to showcase the expansion of our key portfolio medicines into new areas of unmet need. Data is being presented in metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer, and new results for our burgeoning haematology portfolio in hairy cell leukaemia and Waldenström macroglobulinemia.

Most exciting is the breadth of our pipeline science illustrated at this year’s congress; molecules from each of our four scientific pillars of focus are being profiled across presentations over the course of the weekend, and I’m proud to share new advancements that truly showcase the diversity of our pipeline in Immuno-Oncology (IO), DNA Damage Response (DDR), Anti-Drug Conjugates (ADCs), and Tumour Drivers and Resistance. 

Our strategy is now delivering one of the most robust development programmes in oncology, and our most recent year of commercial successes are the hard-won results of these efforts. We are now more than halfway to our goal of launching at least six new medicines in oncology between 2014 and 2020.

But we know we can’t do it all alone. To truly accelerate advances in oncology and explore every scientific opportunity to improve patient outcomes, we understand that we must look to bring together partners who can not only help tackle scientific challenges, but can also help broaden the reach of our pipeline to bring our best-in-class science to more areas where unmet need remains. The breadth of investigator-sponsored research at this meeting is impressive, and reminds us of the inspiration of collaboration. 

This weekend, each one of the abstracts shared represents an important step forward for patients. As we’ll hear from a range of presentations discussing the work of my colleagues, I am proud that we as a company continue to follow the science, and make progress towards our goal of eliminating cancer as a cause of death.