Nitec's Lodotra works in late-stage arthritis study

ZURICH, Sept 2 Wed Sep 2, 2009 1:34am EDT

ZURICH, Sept 2 (Reuters) - Privately owned Swiss biotech firm Nitech said its Lodotra drug proved effective in a late-stage trial of patients with rheumatoid arthritis and it will use the data to apply for U.S. approval.

Lodotra, which is partnered with Merck KGaA (MRCG.DE) in Germany and Austria, was more effective against inflammation of joints than a placebo in the 350-patient study, Nitec said.

Mundipharma has distribution rights for Lodotra in the rest of Europe and Nitec retains all commercialisation rights for the United States and rest of the world.

(Reporting by Sam Cage; editing by John Stonestreet)

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