Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
GSK Gains European Approval for Combination Antiretroviral Drug Kivexa
GlaxoSmithKline on Wednesday announced that it has received marketing approval from the European Commission for its antiretroviral drug Kivexa, which is a once-a-day tablet that combines the company's Epivir and Ziagen, known generically as lamivudine and abacavir, respectively, Reuters reports. Kivexa has no food or fluid restrictions, according to Reuters. Studies have shown that patients taking antiretrovirals more easily adhere to drug regimens when there are no food or fluid restrictions (Reuters, 12/22). "Kivexa is an important advance in GSK's ongoing commitment to provide new options in antiretroviral therapy for HIV patients," Didier Lapierre, vice president of infectious diseases at GSK, said, adding, "Kivexa will provide clinicians and HIV-infected patients with a flexible, well-tolerated and potent combination of the two [nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors] that have been widely used in antiretroviral therapy for years. Prescribers are familiar with these medications, which have an established resistance and long-term safety profile" (GSK release, 12/22).
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