The FDA's cardiovascular drug advisory panel has voted unanimously to recommend that BiDil be approved for use. If the agency follows the advice, it would be the first time a drug was approved after being tested on a single race. Blacks traditionally have suffered higher rates of heart failure, and a two-year trial of BiDil among blacks demonstrated a statistically significant effect for patients taking the drug. BiDil, which was developed by NitroMed in Lexington, Massachusetts, increases levels of nitric oxide in the blood, a substance that blacks typically have lower volumes of. Two of the nine members of the panel recommended that BiDil's label be race specific.
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