Novartis muscle wasting drug gets 'breakthrough' status

ZURICH Tue Aug 20, 2013 4:56am EDT

A Novartis logo is pictured on its headquarters building in Mumbai April 1, 2013. REUTERS/Vivek Prakash

A Novartis logo is pictured on its headquarters building in Mumbai April 1, 2013.

Credit: Reuters/Vivek Prakash

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ZURICH (Reuters) - Novartis said on Tuesday U.S. regulators have granted breakthrough therapy status for its investigational compound bimagrumab for the potential treatment of patients with sporadic inclusion body myositis (sIBM).

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) created the "breakthrough therapy" designation earlier this year for medicines deemed likely to demonstrate "substantial improvement" over existing drugs.

sIBM is a rare yet potentially life-threatening muscle-wasting condition. Patients suffering from the disease can gradually lose the ability to walk. There are currently no approved treatments, according to Novartis.

Bimagrumab was developed by Novartis in collaboration with Morphosys. The drug works by stimulating muscle growth by blocking from inhibitory molecules.

(This corrects day of the week to Tuesday from Thursday)

(Reporting by Caroline Copley)

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Comments (1)
scott860 wrote:
Every now and then some loser has to comment on how big pharmaceutical companies make us sicker, not better, and how these medicines are poisons.

Let’s hear it folks. Who wants to be the first to claim that we shouldn’t use these medicines in this case? Who wants to tell sIBM sufferers to eat an organic vegan diet and all will be well?

I know people who would be dead now if it weren’t for Lipitor or Metformin or chemotherapy or lisinopril. And no, I don’t work in the industry, I’m a software engineer at a window factory.

Aug 20, 2013 12:49pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
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