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Cancer breakthroughs add pressure to control costs

Reuters, June 6, 2013

(Reuters) - An exciting class of new cancer drugs may boost patients' odds for survival, but healthcare providers and insurers will be under pressure to find savings elsewhere to pay for the high price tags of the new treatments. Doctors at this week's annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology heard groundbreaking data on a new class of immune system boosters that some believe will become the main treatment for more than half of all cancers in the next 10 years. They included drugs from Bristol-Myers Squibb and Merck & Co that shrank tumors in patients with advanced melanoma and lung cancer.