Merck: Gardasil may prevent anal warts, cancer in men
WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J. A vaccine made by Merck for preventing human papillomavirus works for preventing anal warts and cancer in men who have sex with men ages 16 to 26 years, according to results of a phase-3 trial announced Wednesday.
The drug maker presented data from the study of Gardasil (human papillomavirus quadrivalent [types 6, 11, 16 and 18], recombinant) at the conference of the European Research Organization on Genital Infection and Neoplasia in Monte Carlo, Monaco.
“We are excited to learn about the potential of Gardasil to help prevent HPV and HPV-related cancers and disease in both men and women,” Merck Research Labs executive director Richard Haupt stated.
For the study, researchers administered Gardasil or placebo to 598 men who have sex with men, a general term used by many clinicians for men who may give themselves such labels as gay, bisexual or otherwise or maybe closeted. This group is considered to be at high risk of anal HPV infection. Cases of infection and anal cancer were counted after the seventh month, with an average follow-up of two and a half years. In the end, the vaccine prevented 77.5% of infections and cancers. Twenty-four men who took placebo were diagnosed with HPV infection, compared with five who took the vaccine; there were no cases of anal cancer in either group.
The vaccine has approval from the Food and Drug Administration for females ages 9 to 26 years to prevent cervical, vulvar and vaginal cancers, genital warts and lesions caused by HPV. It also has approval for use in boys and men ages 9 to 26 years for prevention of genital warts.
Duane Reade opens fifth walk-in medical clinic in New York
NEW YORK A new walk-in clinic at a Duane Reade store in Chelsea officially opened on Wednesday, making it the fifth Duane Reade location with “Doctor on Premises” walk-in medical care.
The physician-staffed clinic is managed by Consumer Health Services and is also affiliated with Beth Israel Medical Center and St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center. It is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and accepts most insurance plans.
“Walk-in, neighborhood-based medical care is a growing trend in this country, and it’s a very positive trend,” stated Dr. Maggie Bertisch, M.D., medical director for New York Walk-In Medical Group PC. “It allows healthcare providers to offer a more convenient, affordable alternative to crowded emergency rooms, while delivering safe, quality medical care in a New York minute.” According to CHS, Duane Reade is planning to add more on-site health clinics in 2010.
As reported, Walgreens, which owns retail-based clinic operator Take Care Health Systems, announced on Wednesday that is has reached an agreement to buy Duane Reade in a deal valued at nearly $1.1 billion.
Hi-Tech Pharmacal, Mission Pharmacal to market new kidney stone treatment
AMITYVILLE, N.Y. Hi-Tech Pharmacal and Mission Pharmacal Co. are planning to market a new treatment for kidney stones to doctors starting in April, the drug maker announced Wednesday.
Under a license agreement between the two companies, Hi-Tech will promote UroCit-K 15mEq (potassium citrate) extended-release tablets to primary care physicians through subsidiary ECR Pharmaceuticals, while Mission will promote it to urologists. The drug is a twice-daily treatment.
“We are pleased to introduce another unique prescription branded product to the primary care market,” Hi-Tech president and CEO David Seltzer said in a statement. “UroCit-K 15mEq is a highly effective product, available in a convenient dosing regimen which will increase patient compliance.”