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Celgene's Revlimid receives approval in China

SUMMIT, N.J. (AP) -- Celgene Corp. said its bone marrow cancer treatment Revlimid has received approval from China's State Food and Drug Administration.

The Summit, N.J., drug developer said Monday that Chinese regulators approved its top-selling drug for use in combination with the chemotherapy dexamethasone to treat patients with multiple myeloma that has relapsed or has not responded to previous treatments.

Revlimid is already approved to treat multiple myeloma patients in about 70 countries, including the United States. Celgene said it expects that Revlimid will be available to patients in China later in the second quarter.

Several drugmakers are trying to expand their presence in China, which they see as a key developing market and source of future sales.

Celgene also said Monday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration granted a priority review to its application to use Revlimid in treating patients with a form of mantle cell lymphoma, a blood cancer. Regulators aim to make a decision by June 5.

Celgene said last month that revenue from Revlimid grew 17 percent in the recently completed fourth quarter to top $1 billion. The drug also is used to treat some anemia patients.

The company's shares climbed $1.22 to $101.35 Monday morning, while broader trading indexes fell less than 1 percent. The stock has already climbed about 29 percent in 2013 after closing the previous year at $78.47.