KarXT: Breakthrough Schizophrenia Drug Reduces Symptoms Without Weight Gain – Bristol Myers Squibb

2024-04-06 17:15:00

Bristol Myers Squibb said Saturday that data from late-stage trials of its experimental schizophrenia drug showed it reduced symptoms of the disorder without the common side effect of weight gain associated with other antipsychotics.

The drugmaker gained access to the drug, called KarXT, through its $14 billion acquisition of Karuna Therapeutics last year. The drug’s long-term data confirmed the results of previous short-term studies, the company said.

In a one-year follow-up, the drug helped curb symptoms such as delusions and reduced speech ability by greater than or equal to 30% in over 75% of patients, as measured on a scale measuring the disease.

“Current antipsychotic treatments are associated with a range of adverse effects, including adverse metabolic profiles, weight gain… and there remains a need for more effective treatments,” said Roland Chen, SVP, Global Drug Development for Immunology, Neuroscience and Cardiovascular Development at Bristol Myers.

The data shows that KarXT reduced weight by an average of 2.56 kilograms after 52 weeks. The majority of participants, 65.1%, experienced weight loss over the course of the study, with 17.6% of them experiencing a loss in body weight greater than or equal to 7%.

Overall, 14.9% of patients discontinued the study due to treatment-related adverse events. The most common adverse events were nausea and vomiting, most of which were mild and transient, the company said.

KarXT is expected to drive sales into the late 2020s and into the next decade, at a time when two of Bristol Myers’ flagship drugs, blood cancer therapy Revlimid and blood thinner Eliquis, face generic competition . (Reporting by Sneha SK in Bengaluru; Editing by Shilpi Majumdar)

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