X-Message-Number: 25216
From: "Basie" <>
Subject: Nuvelo Drug Breaks Up Catheter Clots Faster
Date: Sat, 4 Dec 2004 20:14:59 -0500

Study: Nuvelo Drug Breaks Up Catheter Clots Faster

Sat Dec 4, 3:03 PM ET   Health - Reuters

By Deena Beasley

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Nuvelo Inc.'s experimental blood clot dissolver 
restores function in patients with blocked catheters faster than existing 
therapy, the company said on Saturday.

The catheters, known as central venous access devices, are used to deliver 
chemotherapy, drugs or nutrition to patients. Each year, about five million 
of the devices are used in the United States and about 25 percent of them 
become blocked.

Nuvelo's drug, alfimeprase, is a protein that breaks up the fibrin that 
holds blood clots together.

A mid-stage trial of 55 patients compared three doses of alfimeprase against 
the approved dose of Genentech Inc.'s clot buster Cathflo Activase, which 
works by converting a protein into a substance that dissolves clots.

The highest dose of alfimeprase produced cumulative blood flow rates of 50 
percent 15 minutes after the first dose, 60 percent at two hours, and 80 
percent two hours after the second dose. For Cathflo Activase flow rates 
were zero percent 15 minutes after the first dose, 46 percent at two hours 
and 62 percent two hours after the second dose.

"This is all about speed," said Nuvelo's Chief Executive Ted Love. "This is 
an opportunity to give a drug more rapidly so the patient can get their 
chemotherapy and go home."

No major bleeding events were reported in the trial patients and one patient 
had a catheter-related infection.

Sunnyvale, California-based Nuvelo plans to launch in the first quarter of 
next year a pivotal-stage of alfimeprase as a treatment for "leg attack," in 
which the peripheral leg artery becomes blocked by a blood clot.

"We believe alfimeprase in "leg attack" and catheter occlusion addresses a 
worldwide $500 million-plus market opportunity. Additional indications 
including stroke, heart attack and deep vein thrombosis represent 
significant upside," Bank of America analyst Jennifer Chao said in a report 
on Friday.

The trial results were presented at a meeting of the American Society of 
Hematology in San Diego.

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