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The University of Southampton
Southampton Health Technology Assessments CentreNews

SHTAC is critically appraising manufacturer’s submission to NICE on imatinib for gastrointestinal stromal tumours

Published: 3 March 2014

SHTAC is assessing the clinical-effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of imatinib for the adjuvant treatment of gastrointestinal stromal tumours for the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) Single Technology Appraisal process.

Gastrointestinal stromal tumours (GISTs) are rare connective tissue tumours which can occur along the length of the GI tract. The majority of tumours arise in the stomach or the small intestine. The annual incidence of GIST is estimated to be approximately 900 new diagnoses per year in the UK.

The main treatment for GIST is surgical excision. However, recurrence occurs in 40-50% of patients who have had complete resection. To reduce the risk of recurrence drug therapy may be given with surgery.  Imatinib (Glivec, Novartis Pharmaceuticals) is a selective kinase inhibitor authorised for the adjuvant treatment of adult patients who are at significant risk of relapse following resection of KIT (CD117)-positive GISTs.

NICE are currently reviewing their existing guidance on imatinib for adjuvant treatment of GIST and are expected to issue updated guidance in October 2014.

For more information on SHTAC's research on cancer see our Research page.

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