Obecure obesity drug fails trial

In contrast to a previous trial, Obecure's Histalean did not prevent weight gain by patients taking the antipsychotic drug Zyprexa.

Bio-Light Israeli Life Sciences Investments Ltd. (TASE:BOLT) portfolio company Obecure Ltd. today announced the failure of its clinical trial of, Histalean, for the prevention of weight gain by people taking psychiatric drugs. Histaelean was not found to be more effective than the placebo in preventing weight gain.

Histalean was given in combination with Eli Lilly's (NYSE: LLY) antipsychotic drug, Zyprexa, which is known to cause weight gain. In previous trials, Obecure was able to show that patients taking Zyprexa gained less weight when also taking Histalean than when taking Zyprexa alone.

In the current trial using a higher dosage of Histalean, Obecure was unable to repeat the results.

Bio-Light has not yet stated its opinion about the trial results, saying that it must first complete analysis of the statistical data before making a decision. It may decide to rerun the trial with a lower dosage of Histalean, in order to find out if the problem was the dosage, or if the results of the earlier trials simply could not be repeated.

Eli Lilly, which partly financed the first trial of Histalean, on the grounds that ameliorating the side effects of Zyprexa would help product sales, is no longer involved in Histalean.

Bio-Light's share price fell 8.5% today to NIS 0.368, giving a market cap of NIS 39 million.

Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on December 22, 2010

© Copyright of Globes Publisher Itonut (1983) Ltd. 2010

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