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Pfizer says organ transplant drug fails in study

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November 8, 2013 01:13 PM EST | AP


NEW YORK (AP) — Pfizer said Friday its organ transplant drug Rapamune failed in a clinical trial.

Rapamune as an immunosuppressant drug approved to prevent organ rejection in patients who have received a kidney transplant, and it is recommended for use in patients who have just had a transplant. The latest trial compared patients who were treated with an older drug, tacrolimus, to patients who started on tacrolimus and transitioned to treatment with Rapamune three to five months after their transplant procedure.

Pfizer said patients on both regimens had similar improvements in kidney function.

Sales of Rapamune — which was approved in 1999 — fell 7 percent to $346 million in 2012. Earlier this year the company finalized an agreement with the federal government that will see Pfizer pay almost $491 million to resolve an investigation into illegal marketing of the drug by Wyeth, a company Pfizer acquired in 2009.

Shares of Pfizer Inc. rose 33 cents to $31.24 in afternoon trading.