Drugmaker cuts 75% of R&D workforce after FDA declined lung cancer drug

Henderson, Nev.-based drugmaker Spectrum Pharmaceuticals will reduce three-fourths of its research and development workforce because the FDA declined to approve its lung cancer drug candidate. 

The FDA said it could not approve poziotinib to treat non-small cell lung cancer, and if Spectrum wanted to resubmit an application it would need more data and a randomized study, the drugmaker said in a Nov. 28 news release. In response, Spectrum said it will deprioritize the poziotinib program, effective immediately. 

The biopharmaceutical company said the 75 percent reduction in its R&D workforce will "generate the working capital required to support its strategic refocusing through 2024."

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