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Extended use of AstraZeneca's Brilinta reduces cardiovascular death risk

Published on 24/08/17 at 10:12am

New data for AstraZeneca’s blood thinner Brilinta (ticagrelor) has shown that extended use of the drug can cut the risk of heart attacks by almost a third in patients with a history of such atherothrombotic events.

The findings were derived from sub-analysis of data from the drug’s Phase 3 trial, which examined the effects of Brilinta plus low-dose aspirin in patients who had experienced a myocardial infarction (MI) within two years, or were within one year of stopping anti-platelet treatment with an adenosine diphosphate (ADP) inhibitor.

The trial found that use of the drug beyond the standard regulator-recommended 12 months post-event treatment could have a potential protective cardiovascular benefit. – those taking part in the study experienced a 29% risk reduction in cardiovascular death compared to placebo. Patients also experienced a 20% reduction in risk of death from all relevant causes, and a 20% reduction in the composite of cardiovascular death, MI or stroke.

“The conclusion for both clinicians and patients at high-risk of CV death post-MI is clear: Treatment with Brilinta 60mg, either as continuation therapy after the initial 12 month post-event period, or with as limited interruption as possible, is associated with a clear and favourable benefit-risk ratio for this population of patients,” commented Mikael Dellborg, Professor of Cardiology at the University of Gothenburg and member of the Steering Committee of the trial. “This new insight is potentially practice-changing, as while more than seven million people worldwide suffer a heart attack each year, we know that fewer than half receive adequate long-term treatment to reduce their risk of further CV events.”

Elisabeth Björk, Vice President, Head of Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases, Global Medicines Development at AstraZeneca, added: “The Phase 3 Pegasus-TIMI 54 trial continues to provide valuable data and insights with the potential to benefit both healthcare professionals and their patients. The results reinforce the importance of our continued investment in the science, helping to understand better the unique cardiovascular and mortality benefits that our medicines, such as Brilinta, can provide for the millions of patients living with cardiovascular disease, the leading cause of death globally.”

Matt Fellows

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