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DBV Technologies peanut allergy drug fails key study

WASHINGTON: DBV Technologies SA said on Friday its peanut allergy treatment did not meet the main goal in a highly anticipated late-stage study, sending its U.S.-listed shares sharply down. Nasdaq-listed shares of the French drug developer plunged 60.5 percent to $19 in extended trading. The trial, which tested a 250 microgram stick-on patch called Viaskin Peanut, in 356 children between the ages of 4-11, missed the main goal of achieving a certain tolerance to peanut protein. Shares of rival Aimmune Therapeutics…

Novartis hopeful for novel heart drug, despite ‘modest’ benefit

ZURICH: Novartis will seek regulatory approval this year for a new kind of anti-inflammatory heart drug, though some experts fear fatal infection risks and a high price may overshadow the medicine’s limited benefits. Keenly awaited clinical trial results released on Sunday showed heart-attack survivors on one of three doses of canakinumab were 15 percent less likely to suffer another major cardiac event than those on a placebo. Novartis had said in June that the drug met its goal in the study but details were only…

Anti-diabetes drug also ‘lessens kidney, heart disease’ risk

WASHINGTON: An anti-diabetic drug that lowers blood sugar levels for type 2 diabetes sufferers also significantly cuts the risk of cardiovascular and kidney disease, according to a study published Monday. The findings, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, came in a clinical trial of more than 10,000 patients in 30 countries, using canagliflozin. It found the drug reduced the overall risk of cardiovascular disease by 14 percent and reduced the risk of heart failure hospitalization by 33 percent. It was also…

Cholesterol-slashing drug does not impair brain: study

WASHINGTON: A new cholesterol-slashing drug that has shown promise for high-risk patients does not impair brain function, according to a study out Saturday. Previous research had raised the possibility that evolocumab, sold under the brand name Repatha by Amgen, may have a damaging effect on memory and cognitive function. Evolocumab is part of a new class of cholesterol-lowering drugs called PCSK9 inhibitors, which dramatically lower bad cholesterol, or low-density lipoprotein (LDL). The drug has been shown to…

Drug shortages and malnutrition in Mosul

MOSUL: Malnutrition, child deaths and drug shortages -- healthcare in west Mosul is getting worse by the day as Iraqi forces press an offensive to wrest it from the Islamic State group. "Our neighbours' son died four days ago," Abu Ahmad, a resident of Bab al-Jadid district, told AFP by phone from the militants' last remaining Iraqi stronghold. "The lack of food, combined with the boy's fragile health, killed him. He was just six years old." Abu Ahmad, who did not want to give his full name, said many residents had…

Roche’s emicizumab haemophilia drug succeeds in trial

SHANGHAI: Roche Holding AG's emicizumab drug for treating haemophilia A showed it worked in a phase III study, the Swiss drugmaker said on Thursday. Roche is hoping to win a slice of the $11 billion-a-year haemophilia drug market with the drug, also known as ACE910, which represents a threat to more traditional treatments from Novo Nordisk and Shire. Roche's drug is being closely watched because it could change the way the disease is treated. The study showed a statistically significant reduction in the number of…

Czech scientists develop human lung model to aid treatments

PRAGUE: Czech scientists have developed a model of a functioning human lung that can be used to simulate problems like asthma or other chronic diseases and their treatments. The research group from the Brno University of Technology says its mechanical- and computer-based model of the lung can help devise treatment methods with more precision than past testing and tailor it to individual patients. It can also be used as a reference model for developing inhaled drugs. "This model will show whether an inhaled drug will…

Researchers in US report promising new Alzheimer’s drug

WASHINGTON: A new experimental treatment against Alzheimer's has proved to be promising and free of harmful side effects, researchers in the United States reported Wednesday. The research published in the journal Science Translational Medicine on the basis of a small 32-person sample gave rise to two broader clinical trials that are now underway with more than 3,000 subjects. The treatment uses a compound called verubecestat, developed by US pharmaceutical firm. It reduces levels of proteins called beta amyloids by…

Roche lung cancer drug success adds to pressure on Bristol

COPENHAGEN: Lung cancer patients on Roche's immune system-boosting drug Tecentriq lived on average 4.2 months longer than those taking chemotherapy in a pivotal study, pressuring Bristol-Myers Squibb's dominant position in the field. The trial involved second-line patients, who have already used chemotherapy, and it found the Roche drug worked even in people with low or no levels of a protein called PD-L1, which is often used to test suitability for immunotherapy. The study results were presented at the annual European…