Issue Date: May 14, 2012
Pfizer’s Arthritis Pill Gets FDA Panel’s Okay
An FDA advisory panel has recommended the approval of Pfizer’s rheumatoid arthritis drug tofacitinib. The JAK3 inhibitor is widely viewed as a potential blockbuster drug. The panel voted 7-2 in favor of approving the drug for use in patients with rheumatoid arthritis whose disease has failed to improve with other treatments. The committee raised concerns over the safety of long-term use of tofacitinib, leading analysts to believe FDA might approve only a low dose of the drug. Pfizer is trying to revive growth after the recent loss of patent protection for its top-selling drug, Lipitor. Analysts are projecting that tofacitinib could bring in peak sales of up to $2 billion per year.
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