December 21, 2012

Niacin No Good for High Cholesterol? Merck Tredaptive Failure

Merck Tredaptive failure: Niacin no good for high cholesterol?

Matthew Herper in Forbes on Merck’s Tredaptive a Niacin containing drug, Tredaptive 
failed to prevent heart attacks, strokes, and heart procedures in a large clinical trial, dashing any hope that the medicine would be approved. Worse, a “serious adverse event” cropped up, prompting Merck to instruct doctors in Europe not to start new patients on the drug.
And, similarly is fish oil containing heart drugs ineffective? 
Other companies developing heart drugs could be stung by the result. Amarin, which makes a new form of fish oil called Vascepa, could have marketing difficulties because doctors will draw comparisons between the niacin story and that for fish oil medicines, which showed benefit in early, open-label studies but have failed in more recent rigorous ones.

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