Genentech and Biogen Idec were taking it on the chin this morning after researchers announced that Rituxan had failed in a later-stage trial as a therapy for lupus. The failure won't harm the blockbuster's penetration of the markets for non-Hodgkin's lymphomaÂ and rheumatoid arthritis. But the companies had high hopes for the drug's ability to treat a condition with few therapeutic options to pick from. Analyst estimated potential sales in that one category at more than a billion dollars.
Rituxan block B cells, which play a role in inflammation, and has already been put into use for lupus on an off-label basis. Rituxan also recently failed a late-stage trial for MS.
- here's the Rituxan release
- read the story in the Wall Street Journal
Developers testing new therapies for lupus
New warning issued on Rituxan for lupus
HGS adds positive data in extended lupus trial