Data on Vertex hep C drug impresses in Phase IIb

Vertex has posted impressive new interim data from a Phase IIb trial of VX-950 (telaprevir) for hepatitis C, renewing hopes that the company is on to a striking success. Almost nine in 10 of the 74 patients receiving VX-950 in combination with long-acting interferon and the antiviral drug ribavirin demonstrated undetectable levels of the virus after 12 weeks of therapy compared to 52 percent of patients taking long-acting interferon and ribavirin with a placebo. Long-acting interferon and ribavirin are the current gold-standard therapies for hep C.

"This interim analysis of PROVE 1 is an important step forward in the telaprevir clinical development program, as it strongly supports the initiation and conduct of large clinical trials designed to evaluate the safety and antiviral activity of telaprevir," says CEO Joshua Boger, Ph.D.

- here's the release on the data

ALSO: The data was worth a $15 million milestone payment for Vertex. Report