February 13, 2009 / 11:26 PM / 10 years ago

UPDATE 1-Roche's antiviral meets main goal in late-stage study

Feb 13 (Reuters) - Swiss drugmaker Roche Holding AG ROG.VX said its already approved antiviral Valcyte, met the main goal of a late-stage study.

The study was designed to investigate whether extending therapy with Valcyte to 200 days from 100 days post-transplant will further reduce the incidence of CMV disease in high risk kidney transplant patients, the company said.

Roche, which was testing Valcyte in kidney transplant patients, said the drug reduced the number of patients who develop cytomegalovirus (CMV) disease, a year after the transplant.

The late-stage study tested Valcyte’s efficiency in two arms — patients who received Valcyte for 100 days, followed by a dummy drug for 100 days, and patients who were given Valcyte for 200 days.

“Valcyte, for 200 days, further reduced the risk of CMV disease without increasing this risk after stopping therapy,” said the company.

Valcyte is the current standard of care in prevention of CMV disease, and is indicated for patients who undergo kidney, heart, and kidney-pancreas transplant.

On Friday, American biopharmaceutical company ViroPharma Inc VPHM.O said it stopped a late-stage trial testing its experimental candidate, maribavir, for the same disease, four days after it said the drug failed in a prior late-stage study. (Reporting by Vidya L Nathan in Bangalore; Editing by Amitha Rajan)

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