Novartis looks to squelch neuro worries over its would-be cardio blockbuster

Novartis ($NVS), at work on a cardio drug widely expected to bring in billions of dollars once approved, is working to tamp down concerns that the oral treatment could increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease, adding measures of brain function to an ongoing trial. As The Wall Street Journal points out, Novartis is responding to a paper published this month warning that the drug, LCZ696, could inadvertently interrupt the body's natural method of fighting the plaques thought to cause Alzheimer's. No study on the drug has charted any evidence of cognitive decline, Novartis said, but the company is expanding its evaluation of the issue quot;to provide an answer to the scientific community," an executive told the Journal. More (sub. req.)