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Aug 29, 2012

Schizophrenia Drug Fails in Phase III

  • Lilly is pulling the plug on Phase III development of its schizophrenia candidate pomaglumetad methionil (mGlu2/3) because an independent analysis of data from a second Phase III study (designated HBBN) concluded that the drug simply doesn’t seem to work. A recently completed Phase II trial (HBCO) that evaluated pomaglumetad methionil as an adjunctive treatment to atypical antipsychotics also failed to meet its primary endpoint.

    Lilly says discontinuing Phase III development of the drug will result in an expected third-quarter charge related to R&D expense of some $25–$30 million, pre tax. While the firm admits it’s disappointed with the failure of pomaglumetad methionil, it says it still has about a dozen neuroscience candidates in its clinical pipeline, targeting diseases including depression, bipolar disorder, and cognitive impairment associated with schizophrenia.

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Scientifically Studying Ecstasy

MDMA (commonly known as the empathogen “ecstasy”) is classified as a Schedule 1 drug, which is reserved for compounds with no accepted medical use and a high abuse potential. Two researchers from Stanford, however, call for a rigorous scientific exploration of MDMA's effects to identify precisely how the drug works, the data from which could be used to develop therapeutic compounds.

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