Skip to Content

Weekly Drug News Round Up - September 3, 2014

Heart Failure Study Halted Early Due to Superiority Over Enalapril

Experts state that LCZ696 could replace ACE inhibitors, becoming the new gold standard for heart failure Read More...

As reported in the New England Journal of Medicine, Novartis’ investigational heart failure medicine, LCZ696, was superior to ACE-inhibitor enalapril in the trial PARADIGM-HF with over 8,400 enrolled patients. Results of LCZ696 compared to enalapril in heart failure patients with reduced ejection fraction were highly statistically significant and clinically important. Overall, there was a 20% risk reduction on the primary endpoint, a composite measure of cardiovascular death or heart failure hospitalization (p=0.0000002). LCZ696 combines an angiotensin II receptor blocker (ARB) and the neprilysin inhibitor known as sacubitril.

Fresenius Kabi Receives FDA Approval for Kabiven and Perikabiven

Kabiven and Perikabiven may be especially convenient for patients who require long-term parenteral nutrition at home Read More...

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved Kabiven and Perikabiven (amino acids, electrolytes, dextrose and lipid injectable emulsion) parenteral nutrition (PN) products in a three-chamber bag. Kabiven and Perikabiven are used as a source of calories, protein, electrolytes and essential fatty acids for adult patients requiring parenteral nutrition. The novel bag simplifies the delivery of PN by providing a premixed solution that is shelf-stable at 68° to 77°F until activated for patient use. Kabiven is given by infusion through a central vein catheter only, while Perikabiven is given by infusion through a peripheral or central vein catheter.

ASCO Releases Guidelines for HER2-Negative Breast Cancer

According to ASCO, “there is no single optimal chemotherapy” Read More...

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has released guidelines in the Journal of Clinical Oncology for the treatment of HER2-negative breast cancer, the most common form. The panel stated that in most cases hormonal therapy should be the initial treatment choice for women with hormone receptor-positive advanced breast cancer. In addition, treatments should be given in sequence, not combined, to help lessen side effects and improve quality of life. Among other recommendations, Avastin (bevacizumab) is not advised for most patients, unless they have an immediate life-threatening illness or severe symptoms.

Personalized, Targeted Treatments Changing Psoriasis Therapy

About 7.5 million Americans have psoriasis, which can lead to physical and emotional distress Read More...

Psoriasis is an immune skin condition characterized by irritation, swelling, redness, itching, and thick, dry, silvery scales. In the past, psoriasis has been treated in a gradual step-by-step fashion starting with topical therapy, but today doctors are optimizing therapy for moderate to severe psoriasis from day one, according to an FDA Consumer Update.  Patients can choose from targeted biological agents based on their severity of disease, drug effectiveness, lifestyle, and other health conditions. For example, Stelara (ustekinumab) contains an antibody that blocks two interleukin proteins that contribute to the inflammation and the overproduction of skin cells in psoriasis.

Melatonin Doesn't Curb Delirium After Surgery: Study

The study included 378 elderly patients who had undergone hip fracture surgery Read More...

In a study published this week in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, a melatonin supplement was not found to decrease the delirium many older patients experience in the hospital. Seniors may experience hospital delirium due to disruption of their normal sleep-wake cycle, and a possible lack of the hormone melatonin, although research is limited. Half of 378 patients received melatonin, while the other half received placebo. No effect on average duration of delirium was seen in the study, although those who took the melatonin were less likely to have delirium that lasted more than two days.