LONDON, June 24 GlaxoSmithKline's
experimental once-weekly diabetes drug albiglutide was effective
in late-stage clinical trials, but the medicine may struggle to
differentiate itself in an increasingly competitive market.
Albiglutide belongs to the same class of injectable GLP-1
drugs as Victoza, from Novo Nordisk, and Byetta and
Bydureon, from Bristol-Myers Squibb and AstraZeneca
GSK said in a statement on Monday that its treatment had
lowered glycated haemoglobin, an indicator of blood glucose
levels, more than placebo and some other treatments in the
series of trials.
Albiglutide, which has been submitted for U.S. and European
regulatory approval, met its main goal in five studies, although
it did not demonstrate that it was equally as good as
pioglitazone in one group of patients.
The most commonly reported adverse effects in the studies
were gastrointestinal, mainly nausea and diarrhoea, and
injection site reactions, the company said.
Given its clinical profile, industry analysts believe
albiglutide may struggle to generate major sales, seeing more
promise in new GLP-1 products such as Eli Lilly's
Consensus forecasts for albiglutide currently point to
modest annual sales of around $440 million by 2018, according to
Thomson Reuters Pharma.