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Home Industry News Valeant initiates phase IIb clinical trial of taribavirin

Valeant initiates phase IIb clinical trial of taribavirin

15th March 2007

Valeant Pharmaceuticals has announced the initiation of a phase IIb clinical trial of taribavarin in conjunction with pegylated interferon as a potential treatment for chronic hepatitis C.

The company has started enrolling participants in the trial, which will involve 260 treatment-naive genotype one patients being administered with 20 mg/kg, 25 mg/kg or 30 mg/kg of taribavirin in conjunction with pegylated interferon alfa-2b, in addition to a control group receiving doses of ribavrin with pegylated interferon alfa-2b.

Taribavirin is an investigational oral nucleoside (guanosine) analog that has not yet been approved by any regulatory bodies worldwide.

President and chief executive officer of Valeant Timothy C Tyson said: “We are hopeful that this phase IIb study will provide us with sufficient information to establish the path for registration of taribavirin for the treatment of hepatitis C.”

He added that previous studies had confirmed dosing of the compound should be based on patient weight in order for it to attain efficacy equal to that achieved with ribavirin.

In December 2006, Valeant announced the signing of a definitive agreement with Metabasis Therapeutics relating to the development and commercialisation rights of hepatitis B treatment pradefovir, with the compound being licensed to Schering-Plough.

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