ZURICH Patients taking Novartis' inhaled medicine Onbrez Breezhaler for chronic lung disease had benefits similar to those taking GlaxoSmithKline's Seretide, the Swiss drugmaker said on Friday, citing a late stage study.
Also known as QVA149, Onbrez Breezhaler belongs to a new type of dual-action treatments that are expected by analysts to become major sellers.
The Phase IV study in patients with moderate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) found Novartis' once-daily drug showed similar benefits in reducing shortness of breath as GSK's Seretide, which must be taken twice daily.
Around 210 million people worldwide suffer from COPD, a disease that causes breathing trouble and chronic coughing, and is sometimes fatal.
(Reporting by Caroline Copley; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)