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AstraZeneca’s diabetes drug data shows significant cut in death rates

A study of more than 300,000 people spanning six countries showed Farxiga significantly cut the risk of death or heart failure in diabetes sufferers
diabetes sign
Farxiga works by removing excess glucose from the kidneys

AstraZeneca PLC (LON:AZN) has hailed the latest data from a “real world” trial of its Farxiga diabetes drug, which showed the treatment had a “striking” positive impact on sufferers.

The study of more than 300,000 people in six different countries revealed that treatment with Farixga reduced the rate of hospitalisation for heart failure by 39% and death from any cause by 51%, compared to other type-2 diabetes drugs.

 “Diabetes is a growing epidemic worldwide, which is associated with significant comorbidities that contribute to an increased risk of costly hospitalisations and even death,” said head of global medical affairs Bruce Cooper.

“Real-world data from this study provide striking evidence that the [Farxiga] class of medicines cuts the rate of hospitalisations for heart failure and death by approximately half.”

Farxiga – marketed as Forxiga outside of the US – works by removing excess glucose from the kidneys.

Although the focus from investors is very much on Astra’s drug portfolio – particularly the MYSTIC lung cancer trials – chief executive Pascal Soriot has high hopes for the company’s diabetes treatment.

“[I’m] very confident that, in 2017, Farxiga will become a blockbuster product and exceed £1bn in sales,” the boss said last month.

Shares dipped 0.5%, or 25p, to £48.72 on Monday morning.

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