Weekly injections vs daily pills...
Adam Feurestein wrote:
The study enrolled 11 patients with Type 2 diabetes who had baseline levels of triglycerides between 200 mg per dl and 500 mg per dl.
On the safety side, the injections of ISIS-APOCIIIRx caused no significant serious adverse events, including no "clinically meaningful" increases in liver enzymes, which can be a sign of liver toxicity.
The Isis drug is designed to work by turning off the gene responsible for producing the apoCIII protein. Last year, Isis and partner Sanofi were granted U.S. approval to market Kynamro to treat patients with severely high levels of cholesterol. Kynamro works in a similar manner as ISIS-APOCIIIRx but can also cause liver damage and painful injection-site reactions. European regulators rejected Kynamro due to concerns about the drug's safety.
On Monday, Isis said its new triglyceride-lowering drug appears to be safer and better tolerated than Kynamro, although the former (APOCIIIRx) has been studied in far fewer patients and for a shorter period of time.
ISIS-APOCIIIRx is a potential competitor to Amarin's Vascepa, but the need for weekly injections plus the risk that long-term use may lead to safety issues are likely to limit it to use in patients with much more severe disease (than those treated by Vascepa).
Isis Pharmeceutical says:
It's important to note that the treatment of patients with moderately high triglycerides is simply not as robust as the treatment for patients with moderately high LDL-C. For patients with moderately high triglycerides, there are three main groups of drugs that are used, Fibrates, Niacins and Fish oils.
The patients we are focused on for ISIS-APOCIIIRx have extremely high triglycerides, as defined by triglyceride levels greater than 880 milligrams per deciliter.
There is room in the marketplace for both company's drugs as they are structured towards different market segments.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.