LONDON Dec 5 Britain's healthcare
cost-effectiveness watchdog NICE said on Thursday there were
still questions to be answered about Sanofi's new
multiple sclerosis drug Lemtrada before it could decide if the
product was worth using.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE)
- the body that decides if drugs should be prescribed on the
state health service - is asking the French firm's Genzyme unit
to submit extra information by Jan. 9.
Lemtrada, an injectable treatment also known as alemtuzumab,
was approved in Europe in September. It is still awaiting a
green light in the United States, where experts have raised
questions about its safety and the quality of clinical studies.
The drug was at the heart of Sanofi's lengthy, $20.1 billion
takeover battle for Genzyme, which developed the drug. Sanofi
finally acquired Genzyme in 2011.
As part of the takeover deal, Genzyme shareholders received
contingent value rights, known as CVRs, entitling them
to future payments of up to $14 a share, depending on the
success of the medicine.