Friday, April 29, 2011

Merck Executive Sees FDA OK, Launch Of Boceprevir Hepatitis C Drug In May

By Peter Loftus
Merck & Co. (MRK) expects to launch a new hepatitis C drug in May, pending U.S. regulatory approval, an executive said Friday. 
"We are ready to launch," Adam Schechter, president of Merck;s global human health unit, told analysts on a conference call. "We believe we have completed the studies required for approval, and we anticipate to launch in May."
On Wednesday, a Food and Drug Administration advisory panel unanimously recommended the agency approve Merck's drug, boceprevir, which Merck proposes to sell under the brand Victrelis. An FDA decision is expected by mid-May.
An FDA committee also recommended approval of a competing hepatitis C drug, telaprevir, from Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc. (VRTX) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ).
Analysts see a multi-billion-dollar market for this new crop of hepatitis C drugs, with the Vertex/J&J drug having a competitive edge due to superior clinical-trial data.
-Peter Loftus, Dow Jones Newswires; +1-215-982-5581; 
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
April 29, 2011 09:18 ET (13:18 GMT)
Copyright (c) 2011 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.

No comments:

Post a Comment