Psoriasis drug sickens patient

The FDA issued a warning yesterday confirming that another patient taking the psoriasis drug Raptiva developed a rare form of brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML). The warning came after Genentech reported that a 47 year old man in Germany had been hospitalized for the infection. Two other patients--a 70 year old and a 73 year old--died of PML in October and November of last year. All of the patients who developed PML were taking the psoriasis drug for more th

Tia Ghose
Feb 22, 2009
The FDA issued a warning yesterday confirming that another patient taking the psoriasis drug Raptiva developed a rare form of brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML). The warning came after Genentech reported that a 47 year old man in Germany had been hospitalized for the infection. Two other patients--a 70 year old and a 73 year old--died of PML in October and November of last year. All of the patients who developed PML were taking the psoriasis drug for more than three years. The drug already carries a black-box warning, the sternest warning required by the FDA. In response, Tara Cooper, spokesperson for Genentech, said, "As a company, we take the risk of PML very seriously and we're working with the FDA to put the right plan in place to protect people's safety. We're looking at all possible approaches, including a risk minimization plan." Since its approval in 2003,...



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