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Posts tagged with "Clinical Trials"

  • Business and Markets

    AstraZeneca Gets the Bad News

    After writing about Merck’s successes (so far) in immuno-oncology, it’s time to write about AstraZeneca’s failure. When the rumors started flying about Pascal Soriot leaving the company, one of the speculations was that the MYSTIC trial of the company’s PD-L1 (Imfinzi, durvalumab) and CTLA4 (trememelimab) therapies might be… Read More
  • Cancer

    The Keytruda Story

    This is a good history of Keytruda, the Merck immuno-oncology blockbuster, from David Shaywitz. Most big drugs have a tangled history, and this one is certainly not going to break tradition. As witness: It was discovered accidentally, by biotech scientists looking for drugs that would tamp down the immune response in patients with autoimmune diseas… Read More
  • Clinical Trials

    Too Big to Be True

    I recently wrote a column for Chemistry World on the concept of effect size – the readership there is from all sorts of chemistry, so it’s perhaps not as familiar a concept, and I thought it worth highlighting. (Briefly, effect size is the difference between the means of your treatment group and control group, divided… Read More
  • Business and Markets

    Chaos at AstraZeneca

    What on earth is going on over at AstraZeneca? The company has had plenty of wild ups and downs over the years, and managed to fight off a takeover attempt by Pfizer (and who else has managed that?) But in doing so, they made some pretty strong revenue projections (look what we’ll do if Pfizer… Read More
  • Cardiovascular Disease

    Hold On, Merck’s CETP Inhibitor Actually Works?

    Well, maybe. I have to admit that my first reaction was disbelief. Merck has come out this morning with a statement that its long-running outcomes trial with anacetrapib, their cholesteryl ester transfer protein (CETP) inhibitor, had positive results. Specifically, they say that the trial. . . . . .met its primary endpoint, significantly reducing m… Read More
  • Biological News

    A Heroin Vaccine?

    Drug addiction is a terrible public health problem, and a terrible personal problem for anyone facing it. Giving addicts a better chance to break the drug-taking cycle would be a great benefit, but that’s been an elusive goal. There’s a possible biochemical solution that’s been proposed for years, though, that is recently getting… Read More
  • Cardiovascular Disease

    Two Diabetes Drug Mysteries

    Here are some data to file under “Drugs do things that we don’t expect”. The SGLT-2 inhibitors are a class of diabetes medications that work by inhibiting the sodium/glucose transporter 2 protein in the kidneys. That keeps glucose from being reabsorbed there; instead, more of it is removed in the urine, and that lowers circulating… Read More
  • Cancer

    Why Did This IDO Inhibitor Trial Fail?

    Let’s put this one under the “This is why you run clinical trials” heading. A number of companies have looked at inhibitors of indoleamine 2,3 dioxygenase (IDO) over the last few years. The enzyme turns tryptophan into kynurenine, a pathway which (among other things) regulates immune function. Evidence has accumulated that many… Read More
  • Alzheimer's Disease

    A Movement Towards Tau in Alzheimer’s?

    Failure after failure has been the story on amyloid-targeting therapies in Alzheimer’s. Tau protein, which is involved in pathology of its own in the disease, has been less in the spotlight (although TauRx has done its part by missing its clinical endpoints with its own drug). But there’s a lot of activity going on with… Read More
  • Cardiovascular Disease

    Thoughts on An Antibody Failure

    Talking with some drug discovery folks the other day, I said “You know, if you don’t hold your breath when your compound goes into tox testing, you haven’t been doing this stuff long enough”. Well, it’s pretty hard to hold your breath across a full tox study, but you know what I mean. There are… Read More
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