August 23, 2014
Two studies suggest a first-of-its-kind osteoporosis drug lowers the risk of bone fractures as well as or better than current medicines.
The genetically engineered drug, called denosumab, was tested in older women and men with prostate cancer.
It's made by biotech company Amgen and is being reviewed this week by Food and Drug Administration advisers.
Wall Street sees it as a potential blockbuster crucial to Amgen's future. But given the many treatments for the bone-thinning disease, doctors see its expected high cost as a big drawback.
Denosumab is injected just under the skin just twice a year. If approved, it would compete against eight types of pills and injected medicines, including estrogen and generic and brand-name Fosamax.
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