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NPS Pharma Shares Jump on Drug Study Results

BEDMINSTER, N.J. -- Shares of NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc. climbed 23 percent Monday after the drug developer said a late-stage study of its potential adult short bowel syndrome treatment showed it reduced patient dependency on intravenous fluids.

The Bedminster, N.J., company said the study showed patients receiving Gattex saw a 4.4-liter reduction in weekly intravenous volume to supplement nutritional needs compared to a 2.3-liter reduction in patients who received a placebo. NPS also said the drug was tolerated well.

Short bowel syndrome typically develops after sections of the bowel are removed due to Crohn’s disease, ischemia or other conditions. Patients can suffer from severe diarrhea, malnutrition and dehydration because they can no longer absorb nutrients and water. NPS said patients who receive nutrients and fluids intravenously can develop blood clots, and kidney and liver damage.

The company said the study suggests that Gattex helps restore normal intestinal function in patients.

NPS, which specializes in developing treatments for rare gastrointestinal and endocrine disorders, expects to submit Gattex for Food and Drug Administration approval in the second half of this year.

Company shares climbed $1.78 to $9.39.

Posted: January 2011