Discovering breakthrough therapies begins with deeply understanding the diseases themselves. Learn more about Pfizer’s commitment to tackling some of the most challenging cancers.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women in the U.S. with 1 in 8 women and a small percentage of men having a diagnosis in their lifetimes.1 In 2024, over 310,000 women and over 2,700 men will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S.2 For the past two decades, more people have been diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S., but fewer people are dying from it.2 Early detection, more awareness, and new medicines are key to continuing improvements in breast cancer outcomes.1,3
Pfizer has been treating breast cancer for over two decades, and today, we offer five approved medicines, including the first CDK4/6 inhibitor. We are also investigating additional medicines across different types of breast cancer including HR+/HER2- and HER2+ breast cancer. With these new medicines, we hope to further improve outcomes for people with breast cancer.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men in the U.S., aside from non-melanoma skin cancer, and is a leading cause of death from cancer.2 About 1 in 8 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in their lifetimes.4 Black men are 70% more likely than White men to be diagnosed with prostate cancer.2 In 2024, an estimated 300,000 new cases of prostate cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Though the death rate had been improving, lately this trend has slowed. This change is likely from an increase in later-stage diagnoses that are more difficult to treat.2
For over a decade, Pfizer has worked to help people living with prostate cancer. We have three currently approved medicines, including a medicine that can treat three different forms of prostate cancer. We are also investigating a new medicine that inhibits a specific protein (EZH2) in prostate cancer cells, which has potential in combination with the current leading medicine for prostate cancer.
Bladder cancer is the 6th most common cancer in the U.S.5 In 2024, an estimated 80,000 new cases of bladder cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Men are four times more likely to be diagnosed with bladder cancer than women.2 Though the rates of both new bladder cancers and deaths from bladder cancer have been dropping in recent years, many people still face cancer progression and advanced bladder cancer is a common cause of cancer-related death.2
Pfizer offers a leading medicine in advanced bladder cancer, which has shown the potential to transform outcomes for patients with advanced disease when used in combination with an immunotherapy. We are continuing to study the potential for this medicine in earlier stages of bladder cancer, along with two additional new potential medicines, including an immunotherapy and an antibody-drug conjugate (ADC).
Kidney cancer (also known as renal cancer or renal cell adenocarcinoma) in the U.S. is the 6th most common cancer in men and the 9th in women.2 In 2024, an estimated 80,000 new cases of kidney cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Men are twice as likely as women to be diagnosed with kidney cancer.2 Renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is the most common type of kidney cancer, making up 90% of all cases.6 Though kidney cancer death rates have been declining, more people are being diagnosed with kidney cancer every year.7
Since the first introduction of a groundbreaking medicine 15 years ago, Pfizer has been changing the way advanced kidney cancer is treated. Currently, we have three approved treatments for kidney cancer.
Multiple myeloma (MM) is a blood cancer that affects cells made in the bone marrow, specifically plasma cells, that are an important part of the body’s immune system. More than 35,000 people are diagnosed with MM in the U.S. every year, making it the second most common type of blood cancer.8 Currently there is no cure for MM, leaving a difficult journey ahead for the people impacted by MM. An additional challenge is that MM is likely to progress quicker after each line of treatment.9,10
Pfizer recently received approval for a new bispecific medicine to treat advanced MM that is no longer responding to previous medicines. We are continuing to study how it may help people with other stages of MM, including earlier stages. New medicines are also being explored to provide effective options when other medicines no longer work.
Leukemia is a broad term for blood cancer. Leukemia causes the bone marrow to produce large amounts of abnormal blood cells, which make it hard for healthy cells to do their jobs.11 There are several types of leukemia, which are classified based mainly on whether the leukemia is acute (fast growing) or chronic (slower growing), and whether it starts in myeloid cells or lymphoid cells. In 2024, an estimated over 60,000 new cases of leukemia will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Different types of leukemia have different treatment options and outlooks, but survival is increasing every year.2
Pfizer has a robust selection of blood cancer medicines, including several approved medicines that treat a range of leukemia types in special need of treatment. We are also investigating a number of medicines in early development that may have the potential to treat certain types of leukemia and other blood cancers.
Lymphoma is a type of cancer that starts in cells that are a part of the body’s immune system.12 The two main types are Hodgkin lymphoma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). In 2024, an estimated nearly 90,000 new cases of lymphoma will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Due to improvements in medicines, Hodgkin lymphoma is today considered a curable disease for most patients, and the survival rate has been increasing both for Hodgkin lymphoma and NHL.2,13
Pfizer offers a targeted antibody drug conjugate (ADC) medicine for certain types of lymphoma, including Hodgkin lymphoma.
Melanoma skin cancer is the 5th most common cancer in the U.S. and causes the majority of skin cancer deaths.14,15 Melanoma is considered dangerous because it is likely to invade nearby tissue and spread to other parts of the body if not caught and treated early. In 2024, an estimated 100,000 new cases of melanoma skin cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Gene changes (mutations) in melanoma may help the cancer grow; one such change is to the BRAF gene. About half of all metastatic melanoma have a mutation in the BRAF gene.16 Though some groups of people have seen increasing rates of melanoma skin cancer, advancements in medicine have helped improve survival over the past decade.2
Pfizer offers a targeted combination medicine that fills an important need for people with advanced melanoma who are positive for a specific gene mutation.
Colorectal cancer (CRC) affects the large intestine (including the colon and rectum). They are part of the digestive system, which processes foods for energy and waste.17,18 CRC is the third most common cancer diagnosed in both men and women in the U.S.2 In 2024, an estimated over 150,000 new cases of CRC will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Survival and the number of new cases have improved or stayed the same for adults 55 years of age and older.2 However, adults younger than 55 years of age have had higher rates of CRC and a decrease in survival.2
Pfizer offers two approved targeted medicines for certain types of metastatic CRC. We are continuing to study our approved medicines for additional types of CRC, as well as a potential new antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) medicine for the treatment of CRC.
Cervical cancer begins in the cervix, which is found in the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina.19 In 2024, an estimated over 13,000 new cases of cervical cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S.2 Despite advances in vaccination and preventative screening practices, approximately 15% of patients present with metastatic disease at diagnosis.20 Among patients with initial diagnosis of early-stage disease, up to 61% will recur.20 Recurrent or metastatic cervical cancer is a devastating and mostly incurable disease with an urgent need for more treatment options. Patients who experience disease progression on or after first-line systemic therapy have limited effective therapy choices.21-23
Pfizer offers a leading antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) medicine for cervical cancer, providing hope for patients who need a new treatment option. It is currently being studied for use in earlier lines of treatment.
Lung cancer remains the leading cause of cancer-related death among men and women, and it is the second most common cancer in the U.S.24 In 2024, an estimated 230,000 new cases of lung cancer will be diagnosed in the U.S. The two main types of lung cancer are non-small cell (NSCLC) and small cell (SCLC), with NSCLC being more common than SCLC.25 Lung cancer is difficult to treat because the cancer cells may have many different mutations and the medicines may no longer work as time goes on.
Pfizer offers multiple approved targeted medicines that treat several forms of NSCLC. We are also exploring a new antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) medicine in a Phase 3 trial for NSCLC.
Head & Neck
Head & Neck
Head and neck cancers occur in the larynx, throat, lips, mouth, nose, and salivary glands.26 About 4% of all cancers in the U.S. are head and neck cancers.27 These cancers are more than twice as common among men than among women.27 In 2023, an estimated over 65,000 new cases of head and neck cancer were diagnosed in the U.S.27 There is a high need for additional effective treatment options for head and neck cancers.
Pfizer is conducting clinical trials to explore the potential of antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) medicines for squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck, including the potential for combination therapy.