PHARMACY

Oramed completes mid-stage trial of Type 2 diabetes drug

BY Alaric DeArment

JERUSALEM Oramed Pharmaceuticals has finished a mid-stage clinical trial of a pill-based treatment for Type 2 diabetes, the Israeli drug maker announced Thursday.

The company expects to report results from the phase 2b trial of the oral insulin capsule ORMD-0801 within the next few weeks. The trial took place at five locations in South Africa.

“The completion of the phase 2b clinical trial for ORMD-0801 is a significant milestone for Oramed,” Oramed CEO Nadav Kidron stated. “We are especially thankful for the dedication of all the investigators who participated in the study.”

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FDA approves expanded use of Xifaxan

BY Alaric DeArment

SILVER SPRING, Md. The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new use for a drug made by Salix Pharmaceuticals, the FDA announced Wednesday.

The agency approved Salix’s Xifaxan (rifaximin) for treating hepatic encephalopathy, a deterioration in brain functioning in patients with liver disease that results from the liver’s no longer being able to clear toxins from the body.

The drug already had approval for treating traveler’s diarrhea.

“The approval of Xifaxan for this new indication provides an additional treatment optin for patients with liver disease,” FDA Division of Gastroenterology Products deputy director Joyce Korvick said in a statement. “Hepatic encephalopathy occurs commonly in patients with liver disease, and there are few effective treatments for this serious condition.”

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Teva gets tentative approval for argatroban

BY Alaric DeArment

JERUSALEM The Food and Drug Administration has given tentative approval to a generic anticoagulant by Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Teva announced Thursday.

The FDA gave the authorization to the injected drug argatroban, a generic version of a GlaxoSmithKline drug for treating heparin-induced thrombocytopenia that is branded with the same name. The branded version of the drug has annual sales of around $137 million, according to IMS Health.

A tentative approval means that the generic version of the drug meets the conditions for full approval by the FDA, but it can’t be marketed yet because the patent has not expired.

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