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Reaction to Avandia Warnings Stronger Among Internists Than Endocrinologists, According to Study by GfK Market Measures

EAST HANOVER, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Jul 11, 2007 - Since the May 2007 release of a New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) report that Avandia users are 43 percent more likely to suffer a heart attack and 67 percent more likely to die of cardiovascular causes than non-users of Avandia, it is no surprise that physicians intend to switch many type 2 diabetes patients from Avandia to therapies believed to pose less risk. Research from GfK Market Measures' Event Flash, Physicians' Reactions to NEJM's Results on Avandia's Increased CV Risk, suggests, however, a greater negative response by internists than endocrinologists.

The GfK Market Measures study showed universal awareness of the NEJM report, though not all physicians recalled the exact percentages. The internists, however, demonstrated the strongest negative impact to the findings signaling they will "switch more than half their patients currently on Avandia to another therapy," according to Anna Marie Napolitano, Vice President and Leader of GfK Market Measures' Cardiology Practice. "This sharply contrasts with general/family practitioners and endocrinologists who expect to switch less than half of their patients."

Forty percent of internists also indicated a high likelihood they will take all of their Avandia, Avandamet and Avandaryl patients off each respective drug, even though the FDA has not required it, in contrast to a smaller percentage of endocrinologists. Internists are also more likely than the endocrinologists to indicate a reluctance to prescribe any product containing Avandia.

To a lesser degree, the news of Avandia's effect on cardiovascular risk may have negatively impacted physicians' perceptions of ACTOS. One-third of internists and about one-quarter of general/family practitioners and endocrinologists report they are reluctant to prescribe ACTOS or any other product containing ACTOS (i.e., ACTOplus met).

The GfK Market Measures research also identified Januvia and Januvamet as the therapies most likely to benefit from the Avandia switches implemented by all groups of physicians treating type 2 patients.

"While the news of Avandia's cardiovascular risk may provide a barrier for some physicians to any oral medications, on the other hand it could also expedite patients to insulin," said Napolitano. "About 30 percent of both internists and endocrinologists report a high likelihood to switch patients to insulin sooner due to the Avandia news."

200 Physicians Reveal Anticipated Actions

Reflecting views from 200 physicians who see no fewer than 10 type 2 diabetes patients per week, GfK Market Measures' Event Flash, Physicians' Reactions to NEJM's Results on Avandia's Increased CV Risk, provides an immediate read of physicians' reaction to the NEJM report. Using an Internet methodology, general/family practitioners, internists and endocrinologists expressed their expectations by responding to a survey that was self administered.

Both Avandia and ACTOS have been asked to add "black box" warnings on their labels while the FDA continues to investigate. On July 30, 2007, the FDA's Endocrinologic and Metabolic Drugs Advisory Committee and Drug Safety and Risk Management Advisory Committee will meet to discuss the cardiovascular ischemic and thrombotic (heart-related) risks of thiazolidinediones, focusing particularly on rosiglitazone (Avandia).

About GfK Market Measures

GfK Market Measures provides healthcare clients with a unique mix of custom and syndicated solutions to support the full marketing continuum, including market assessment, brand tracking, sales force effectiveness, healthcare consumer and product launch applications. GfK Market Measures is a member of the GfK U.S. Healthcare Companies, the largest provider of custom healthcare marketing research services in the United States. For further information please visit www.gfkmarketmeasures.com.

For more details on this study or to schedule an interview with a GfK Market Measures executive, please contact Jessica Makovsky, Group Vice President of Communications, GfK U.S. Healthcare Companies, at 215.283.3200 x372 or jmakovsky@gfkushc.com.

Contact

GfK Market Measures
by
Group VP Communications
Jessica Makovsky, 215-283-3200 x372
Fax: 215-283-3201
jmakovsky@gfkushc.com

Posted: July 2007

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