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'Disappointing' stroke trial abandoned

26th October 2006

Pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca has abandoned trials of a new drug designed to treat stroke patients after it failed final stage tests.

The company said trials of NXY-059 had produced "disappointing" results and consequently further development of the drug would be cancelled.

It was hoped that the drug would help to preserve brain cells following an acute ischemic stroke and thus reduce the risk of neurological disabilities.

But the trials found it to be of no benefit to stroke patients when compared with a placebo, and the company therefore took to decision to drop the drug from its development pipeline.

John Patterson, executive director of development at AstraZeneca, said: "These clinical trial results, while not without precedent given the challenging nature of the science, are disappointing for patients looking for new treatments for stroke and for AstraZeneca as we seek to build our research and development pipeline."

NXY-059 was one of two experimental drugs that AstraZeneca had planned to submit for approval early next year.