Amgen breathes a sigh of relief on Aranesp results

Finally, some much-needed good news for Amgen. Dispelling fears that its anemia drug is unsafe, Amgen has release new data from a Phase III trial of Aranesp showing no difference in risk of death among patients with small-cell lung cancer. The study demonstrated a significant change in hemoglobin concentration in favor of Aranesp (a co-primary endpoint). Aranesp-treated patients also experienced a significantly lower risk of blood transfusions. Recently, Amgen's stock has taken a dive as concerns have mounted that the drug could be linked to a higher rate of death. Given that Amgen did a brisk $4.1 billion in sales of Aranesp last year, the results of this study are indeed great news for the biotech company. An expert FDA panel is scheduled to review the safety of anemia drugs on May 10.

- check out this release on the data
- read this explanation from TheStreet