AstraZeneca receive green light on Lokelma and Farxiga

AstraZeneca PLC (LON:AZN) have received a positive start to 2020, updating the market on two of its drug programs.

AstraZeneca said that the Lokelma drug has been approved in China for the treatment of hyperkalaemia and Farxiga granted a priority review by the US Food & Drug Administration.

Lokelma was approved by the National Medical Products Administration, based on positive results from the clinical trial program. The results showed that patients receiving the product experienced a sharp, sustained reduction of potassium in the blood.

Lokelma is used to treat conditions such as hyperkalaemia which is diagnosed by high level of potassium in the blood, which can lead to many other long term health complications.

Additionally, Farxiga had received the green light from the Food & Drug Administration in the United States.

The drug also granted the medication a priority review for reducing the risk of death in patients with heart conditions.

The new drug application was based on results from the phase III DAPA-HF trail publishing in September 2019, which demonstrated that Farxiga reduced the outcome of heart failure worsening, compared to placebo.

Astra Comments

“This approval marks an important milestone for more than two million patients in China who suffer from hyperkalaemia. Lokelma will offer the opportunity for patients and physicians to achieve long-term disease control and potentially reduce the risk of acute episodes, which can have serious, even life-threatening consequences,” said Mene Pangalos, executive vice president for Biopharmaceuticals R&D.

“Farxiga is well established in the treatment of type-2 diabetes and this Priority Review shows its potential to also impact millions of patients with heart failure. If approved, Farxiga will be the first and only medicine of its kind indicated to treat patients with heart failure,” Pangalos concluded.

AstraZeneca continue the good form into 2020

In December, Astra announced two updates which would have pleased shareholders.

Deepmatter Group PLC (LON:DMTR) saw their shares rally following a pharmaceutical technology collaboration with AstraZeneca. The firm joined forces with the FTSE 100 giant in a digital technology venture, designed to speed up the drug delivery process.

Additionally, the firm have continued their expansion into China. Astra told shareholders that they had joined forces with Merck & Co (NYSE:MRK) to receive marketing authorization from China’s National Medical Products Administration for their Lynparza drug.

As well as receiving the marketing approval, Astra also told shareholders that they had planned to create a both a research centre and am artificial intelligence innovation center both in Shanghai, and a “first-of-its-kind” healthcare industrial fund with China International Capital Corp Ltd (HKG:3908).

Shares in AstraZeneca trade at 7,572p. (-1.81%). 6/1/20 10:31BST.

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