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R&D news in brief

Our weekly round-up of R&D news in brief

Long acting Risperdal shines in study
Patients with first episode psychosis experienced significant improvements in their symptoms and social functioning after treatment with Janssen-Cilag's Risperdal Consta, according to research presented at a schizophrenia workshop in Switzerland.

The study said the long-acting injectable drug was found to be effective and generally well tolerated in people experiencing a first episode of psychosis.

ìIt is vitally important that a person's first experience of antipsychotic treatment is positive, as this can have a lasting impact on the individual's attitude to taking medication long-term,î said lead investigator, Professor Robin Emsley from the University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Question mark over anti-clotting treatment
The practice of treating heart-attack victims as soon as possible with anti-clotting drugs doesn't benefit patients and increases the risk of subsequent heart attacks and strokes, a new study published in the Lancet suggests.

The practice, known as ìfacilitated angioplastyî is a popular course of action while patients await the procedure to unblock their arteries, known simply as angioplasty.

In a pooled analysis, involving more than 4,500 patients, the two kinds of drugs commonly used in facilitated angioplasty were studied: the so-called IIb/IIIa inhibitors, which prevent blood-clot formation, and the thrombolytics, which dissolve existing blood clots.

Using the drugs within hours of angioplasty led to more deaths, more subsequent heart attacks, more episodes of major bleeding and more strokes than angioplasty by itself, the study found.

30th September 2008

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