Last weekend, Pfizer
The duo said yesterday that they were stopping a trial testing apixaban in patients with atrial fibrillation, a type of irregular heartbeat, because it was clear that the drug worked better than aspirin at reducing strokes and blood clots. They're saving the full data for a medical presentation, but you can bet that the results will be substantially positive because the trial was stopped early.
Passing the trial is certainly a positive for Pfizer and Bristol, but the true test for apixaban is still to come. Yesterday's results were for a trial testing patients who couldn't take warfarin, a common drug used to treat prevent blood clots, but the largest market will be in patients who can take warfarin. The two companies are running a trial testing apixaban against warfarin, which should wrap up next year -- assuming it doesn't get stopped early as well.
Unlike other drugs that have tried to go after large indications but failed -- Eli Lilly's
Pfizer and Bristol-Myers aren't the only one to notice the need for a new drug. Bayer and Johnson & Johnson
Until then, coagulate in the comments and discuss the possibilities.
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