Long term study points to Teva drug Copaxone safety

More than 80% of patients were still walking without assistance despite a mean MS disease duration of 22 years.

Pharmaceutical company Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. (Nasdaq: TEVA; TASE: TEVA) today announced the publication of data from a long term clinical study of Copaxone which highlighted the multiple sclerosis (MS) drug's safety and efficacy.

The data was published in the February issue of the journal Multiple Sclerosis.

In the 15-year clinical study, more than 80% of patients were still walking without assistance despite an average MS disease duration of 22 years, and two-thirds of patients had not transitioned to secondary progressive MS.

The most common adverse events associated with Copaxone were local injection-site reactions and immediate post-injection reactions. No other immune-mediated disorders, infections or malignancies were reported.

The study's primary investigator, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center professor of neurology and director of the multiple sclerosis specialty clinic Dr. Corey Ford said, “This study is important for the MS community as it further confirms the benefits of continuous long-term use of Copaxone and its ability to effectively slow the natural progression of this disease.”

The study, currently in its 19th year, was extended to 20 years based on the positive results seen thus far and the interest of the MS community in the long term outcomes of treatments for this life-long disease.

Shares in Teva rose 1% to $60.17 by late afternoon today.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on February 25, 2010

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2010

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