AstraZeneca drug routs gout in phase III trials
- AstraZeneca's lesinurad is a serum uric acid (sUA) re-absorption inhibitor.
- When used in combination with xanthine oxidase inhibitors, a 200-mg dose of lesinurad helps patients reach target sUA levels without a high incidence of adverse renal events.
- Gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis that affects 8.3 million Americans.
AstraZeneca procured lesinurad through its $1.26 billion acquisition of Arden Biosciences in June 2012. After testing both the 200-mg and 400-mg doses in phase III trials, the company has decided to focus on the lower dose regimen, as the higher dose was associated with a higher incidence of renal-related adverse events and kidney stones.
According to AZ’s chief medical officer, Briggs Morrison, 40% to 70% of gout patients do not meet target levels of sUA. Clearly, there is an unmet medical need here -- one that AZ hopes to address with lesinurad.