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Schwarz's New Epilepsy Drug Reduces Seizures

An experimental epilepsy drug, lacosamide, developed by U.S firm Schwarz has found to be potential in reducing the frequency of seizures in patients// not controlled by other drugs - the company said on Monday following the results of a phase 3 trial.

The results of the 485-patient study were presented at the North American Regional Epilepsy Congress. The results proved that epileptics treated with a 200-mg dose of the drug, lacosamide, had 14.4 percent fewer seizures than those given a placebo, while patients given a 400-mg dose had 15 percent fewer seizures than placebo-treated patients. Dizziness, headache and double vision, are considered to be the two major side effects of the drug, lacosamide - the company added.

"We are delighted that lacosamide has demonstrated efficacy in a very difficult-to-treat patient population," said Iris Loew-Friedrich, a member of Schwarz' executive board.

"This trial will be submitted to the regulatory agencies in both the European Union and the (United States) as part of the marketing authorization application for lacosamide as adjunctive therapy in adults with partial seizures," Loew-Friedrich added.

Around 2.3 million Americans suffer from epileptic seizures and about 30 percent of them require two or more drugs to control the seizures, said Mike Davis, product director for Schwarz Pharma, which is being acquired by Belgian pharmaceutical group UCB SA.

It is expected that the full results from a second Phase III trial of lacosamide will be announced early next year and the drug could be on the market within the next year or so depending on the regulatory issues. – added the report.


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