July 3, 2019 / 6:37 AM / in 21 days

Roche says one-dose Xofluza flu drug as good as older Tamiflu in kids

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Swiss drugmaker Roche is seen at its headquarters in Basel, Switzerland February 1, 2018. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo

ZURICH (Reuters) - Swiss drugmaker Roche said its new one-dose flu medicine Xofluza was comparable to its 20-year-old drug Tamiflu in reducing the duration of symptoms of the viral disease, citing a study of the drug in children aged one to 12 years old.

Xofluza, an oral treatment, was well tolerated in children, said Roche, whose medicine is already approved broadly in Japan and for people older than 12 in the United States. The company is seeking to establish Xofluza as a more-convenient alternative to its older Tamiflu, which must be taken twice daily for five days and which is off patent, allowing cheap copies to crowd in.

Xofluza’s list price is about $150, while generic Tamiflu, also called oseltamivir, can cost less.

Reporting by John Miller; Editing by Michael Shields

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