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AstraZeneca's Brilinta combo reduces rate of disabling stroke or death in stroke patients, according to Phase 3 data

Published on 09/11/20 at 01:39pm

AstraZeneca has unveiled new Phase 3 data for Brilinta (ticagrelor) as a treatment for patients who have suffered an acute ischaemic stroke or transient ischaemic attack, showing that, when combined with aspirin, the therapy was more effective than aspirin alone.

In patients who had suffered a recurrent stroke, the data revealed that Brilinta, taken twice daily in combination with aspirin, led to a 17% reduction in the rate of disabling stroke or death compared to aspirin after 30 days of treatment. At 30 days, the rate of the composite of non-disabling stroke or death stood at 1.3% in the combo group and 1.6% in the group receiving only aspirin.

The combo was also shown to generate a “nominally significant” effect on disability burden over aspirin alone, as measured according to modified Rankin scores.

“Until now, only aspirin had shown a significant reduction in disabling stroke during the first 90 days following an ischaemic stroke in a single trial,” explained Professor Pierre Amarenco, International Coordinating Investigator and Vice-Chair of the THALES Executive Committee and Professor of Neurology at Paris University. “These new findings from THALES show that aspirin plus ticagrelor could provide a clinically meaningful reduction of the composite of disabling stroke and death compared to aspirin alone at day 30 due to subsequent ischaemic stroke.”

Dr Clay Johnston, International Coordinating Investigator and Chair of the THALES Executive Committee and Dean of the Dell Medical School at The University of Texas, added: “Without early treatment, up to 10% of people are at risk of a major stroke in the first month after a transient ischaemic attack or acute ischaemic stroke. The THALES trial demonstrated that the risk of the composite of stroke or death at 30 days was lower with aspirin-ticagrelor than with aspirin alone.”

The results were presented at the virtual European Stroke Organisation and the World Stroke Organization Conference 2020 and published in JAMA Neurology.

Matt Fellows

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