Glaxo plays down diabetes drug study

Tue, 03 Jul 2007
Diabetes drug manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline has condemned a recent clinical trial that suggests the diabetes drug Avandia could cause bone fractures amongst both women and men.

According to Glaxo, the significance of the retrospective study, published by leading diabetes journal Diabetes Care, is limited. The study indicates that Avandia could lead to reductions in bone mineral density, increasing the likelihood of fracture. The risk to women had been established previously, but the new study showed that both sexes face danger from the drug.

Avandia, one of the major earners for Glaxo and a billion-dollar-per-annum blockbuster drug, has faced media controversy recently over claims that it increases the risk of heart attack and death.

The Glaxo response was reportedly: "The findings of this study are limited as it involves very low patient numbers and, as a retrospective study, it is not possible to draw meaningful comparisons nor rule out confounding factors, such as age and duration of diabetes."
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