Amgen shares fall as drug gets partial nod
GAITHERSBURG, US: The world’s biggest biotechnology company Amgen won a partial endorsement this week for the most important product in its pipeline – a first-of-its-kind medicine made to compete in an $8 billion market for osteoporosis treatments.
A US Food and Drug Administration panel unanimously backed the drug, denosumab, as a treatment for osteoporotic patients, but concerns about serious infections and potential long-term risks led them to urge against giving the twicea-year injection to prevent the disease. The committee also rejected most cancer-related uses proposed.
Shares of the world’s biggest biotechnology company fell 2 percent to $60.86 before trading closed on Nasdaq and then dropped to $60.50 in late after-hours trade.
Shares had jumped 27 percent in the past three months, to 60, largely on news of clinical trials that showed the drug was as at least as effective, and sometimes better, than standard osteoporosis treatments.
The bone-thinning disease affects an estimated 10 million Americans. Global sales of osteoporosis drugs hit about $8.4 bn last year, according to IMS Health. – Reuters