Amgen researchers said that, based on recent Phase 3 clinical data, its Repatha is an improvement over statin drugs, a class of medicines credited with reducing death by heart disease in a generation of patients.
In a May 20 press release, Amgen said Repatha, a new treatment that cuts low-density cholesterol (LDL, the "bad" cholesterol linked to heart disease), showed better results compared to standard treatment with statin therapy.
Among the study’s nearly 28,000 test subjects, Repatha reduced the LDL levels from a median 65.5 mg/dl to 21 mg/dl, the release said. In patients whose LDL was below 70 mg/dl, Repatha also reduced the incidence of heart attack by almost one-third.
Researchers praised the study’s findings, presented during this year’s National Lipid Association Scientific Sessions.
“We now have additional evidence of the benefit of (Repatha) in reducing cardiovascular event risk, even in patients starting with LDL-C levels below the most aggressive current guideline targets and in patients already on maximum-intensity statin therapy,” Dr. Marc Sabatine, a Harvard Medical School professor of medicine and a distinguished chair in cardiovascular medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, said in the release.
Dr. Sean E. Harper, Amgen’s executive vice president of research and development, said in the release that the drug improves LDL levels beyond what is considered successful treatment today.
"The Repatha cardiovascular outcomes trial shows that even patients already at lower levels of baseline LDL-C are still at risk for a cardiovascular event, and the addition of Repatha can continue to safely lower these patients' cardiovascular risk by reducing their LDL-C levels beyond current targets,” Harper said.