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Sanofi's Genzyme Says MS Drug Lemtrada Shows More Trial Success

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04/24/2012 | 09:39pm CEST

Genzyme, the U.S. biotechnology unit of France's Sanofi SA (SNY), Tuesday said latest results from a late-stage clinical study showed its multiple sclerosis drug Lemtrada significantly reduced relapses and any worsening of the condition, and in some cases showed a reversal in disability.

In a Phase III trial called CARE-MS II involving 840 patients, the relapse rate was reduced by 49%, compared with an older drug called Rebif, or subcutaneous interferon beta-1a, which is sold by German rival Merck KGaA (>> Merck KGaA).

The company said 65% of patients treated with Lemtrada were relapse-free after two years into the study, compared with 47% treated with Rebif.

Genzyme is developing the drug, also known as alemtuzumab, in collaboration with German drug maker Bayer AG (>> Bayer AG), and Sanofi aims to launch the drug by the end of next year. Multiple sclerosis is a chronic disease that attacks the central nervous system.

"We believe these ground-breaking results from CARE-MS II, including reversal of disability accumulation in some patients, achieved over the standard therapy Rebif, provide a message of hope for people living with MS," said David Meeker, Genzyme's CEO, said in a statement, adding: "We are on track to submit alemtuzumab for review to U.S. and EU regulatory authorities in the second quarter of this year."

In the CARE-MS II trial, alemtuzumab was given as an injection eight times over the course of the two-year study. The first treatment course of alemtuzumab was administered on five consecutive days, and the second course was administered on three consecutive days 12 months later. Rebif was administered by injection three times per week, each week, throughout the two years of study.

Sanofi, which is struggling with patent expiries on its blockbuster drugs, bought Genzyme in February 2011 in a bid to widen its research net.

--By Sten Stovall, Dow Jones Newswires; +44 207 842 9292; [email protected]

Stocks mentioned in the article : Merck KGaA, Bayer AG
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
BAYER -2.08% 96.5 Delayed Quote.-2.22%
MERCK KGAA -1.38% 81.66 Delayed Quote.-7.79%
SANOFI -1.20% 67.44 Real-time Quote.-4.41%
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Financials (€)
Sales 2018 35 273 M
EBIT 2018 8 334 M
Net income 2018 5 099 M
Debt 2018 15 707 M
Yield 2018 4,42%
P/E ratio 2018 16,42
P/E ratio 2019 15,34
EV / Sales 2018 2,88x
EV / Sales 2019 2,72x
Capitalization 85 782 M
Duration : Period :
Sanofi Technical Analysis Chart | SAN | FR0000120578 | 4-Traders
Technical analysis trends SANOFI
Short TermMid-TermLong Term
Income Statement Evolution
Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 27
Average target price 77,0 €
Spread / Average Target 13%
EPS Revisions
Olivier Brandicourt Chief Executive Officer & Director
Serge Weinberg Chairman
Jérôme Contamine Chief Financial Officer & Executive VP-Finance
Elias A. Zerhouni President-Global Research & Development
Ameet Nathwani Executive Vice President-Medical Affairs
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