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New Studies Evaluating NexiumIn Pediatric GERD To Be Presented At,Annual Digestive Disease Week Meeting

AstraZeneca Focuses Research on Growing Childhood Condition

WASHINGTON, May 22, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- AstraZeneca will present several studies today regarding pediatric patients with gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) during oral and poster sessions at the annual Digestive Disease Week meeting held at the Washington Convention Center.

The studies being presented further support AstraZeneca's commitment to research in the area of gastrointestinal health among the pediatric population. NEXIUM (esomeprazole magnesium) received approval in April 2006 for the short-term treatment (up to 8 weeks) of GERD in adolescent patients aged 12 to 17. The approval is supported by extrapolation of results from adequate and well-controlled studies that supported the approval of NEXIUM for adults, and safety and pharmacokinetic studies performed in adolescent patients. The safety and effectiveness of NEXIUM for the treatment of symptomatic GERD in patients less than 12 years of age and for other pediatric uses have not been established.

The exact prevalence of GERD in children is unknown. However, GERD can lead to potentially serious complications like failure to thrive and erosive esophagitis in children. There are very few studies in the medical literature reporting the frequency of GERD symptoms in children. One such study, a practice-based survey looked at the prevalence of GERD symptoms in 3-17 year old children. The study included 566 parents of otherwise healthy 3-9 year old children and revealed that symptoms of GERD (heartburn, epigastric pain and regurgitation) were reported weekly in 2-8%, which is not that uncommon.

"GERD, which can potentially lead to more serious conditions, not only impacts adults but it is also common in childhood," said Marta Illueca, MD, F.A.A.P., Director, Clinical Research, GI Respiratory, AstraZeneca. "With patient health being our priority, one of our object
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