LONDON Aug 14 AstraZeneca said on
Thursday it was starting final-stage Phase III clinical trials
for its experimental drug tralokinumab as a treatment for severe
The drug, which showed promising results in mid-stage trials
in May, was among those highlighted by AstraZeneca as part of
its defence against an abortive $118 billion takeover bid by
Like many of AstraZeneca's biggest new drug hopes, the
medicine was developed by MedImmune, the U.S.-based biotech
company acquired by AstraZeneca in 2007.
Several firms are racing to develop injectable biotech
asthma drugs for patients with severe disease who do not respond
well to traditional inhalers, in pursuit of a new market worth a
possible $7.5 billion a year.
(Reporting by Ben Hirschler, Editing by Paul Sandle)