Bristol clot drug wins EU green light for wider use
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[June 27, 2014] LONDON
(Reuters) - Pfizer and Bristol-Myers Squibb's oral
anticoagulant Eliquis has been recommended for wider use
in Europe, boosting prospects for an important drug to
both U.S. companies.
European Medicines Agency (EMA) experts recommended that Eliquis,
also known as apixaban, should be approved for treating deep vein
thrombosis and pulmonary embolism, as well as for preventing
recurrent cases, the drugmakers said on Friday.
The two conditions occur when a clot blocks the flow of blood in a
deep vein - usually in the lower leg, thigh or pelvis - or in blood
vessels in the lungs.
Eliquis is already approved for reducing the risk of stroke in
patients with atrial fibrillation, a form of irregular heartbeat
common among the elderly.
The new approval will help Eliquis to compete with Xarelto, a
similar drug from Bayer and Johnson & Johnson, as well as other
rivals in the nascent field. Industry analysts believe the new
generation of blood thinners could eventually generate sales of more
than $10 billion a year.
Recommendations for marketing approval by the EMA's Committee for
Medicinal Products for Human Use, or CHMP, are normally endorsed by
the European Commission within a couple of months.
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(Reporting by Ben Hirschler; editing by Kate Kelland)
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