August 29, 2014 / 2:05 PM / in 3 years

Germany's Bayer to launch three new Xarelto trials

FRANKFURT, Aug 29 (Reuters) - Germany’s Bayer said it plans to launch three new studies to add more uses for its anti-clotting drug Xarelto, one of its top five new medicines.

Xarelto, which competes with Bristol-Myers Squibb and Pfizer’s Eliquis pill in stroke prevention, reached sales of $1.7 billion in the 12 months through June, with analysts estimating annual sales could rise to more than $9.5 billion by 2020.

Two new Phase III trials are to test Xarelto, jointly developed with U.S. peer Johnson & Johnson, on patients with embolic stroke of undetermined source and peripheral artery disease, Bayer said in a statement on Friday.

The third new study is a Phase II trial designed to evaluate Xarelto for long-term prevention in patients who have suffered an acute coronary syndrome. If the study is successful, a Phase III study will follow, Bayer said. (1 US dollar = 0.7592 euro) (Reporting by Maria Sheahan; Editing by Jonathan Gould)

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