Weight-loss pill wins approval by Panel of Food and Drug Administration
Two earlier weight-loss drugs were rejected
Orexigen Therapeutics's Contrave, a weight-loss pill has won approval from a panel of the the Food and Drug Administration. In trial testing, the medication proved that at least 35 percent of test subjects were able to lose five percent of their weight. While there are heart risk concerns, it is the first new weight loss pill in the U.S. in almost a decade.
Attempts to create a successful diet pill have proved to be largely fruitless. The few such legitimate diet pills on the market have serious side effects.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Orexigen Therapeutics's Contrave, a weight-loss pill has won approval from a pnael of the Food and Drug Administration. In trial testing, the medication proved that at least 35 percent of test subjects were able to lose five percent of their weight. While there are heart risk concerns, it is the first new weight loss pill in the U.S. in almost a decade.
Contrave combines the alcohol and drug addiction drug naltrexone with the antidepressant bupropion in an attempt to boost metabolism while curbing appetite and cravings. Study data showed a slight increase blood pressure and pulse rates.
The Food and Drug Administration rejected two rival medicines in October. While advisers were not overly impressed with the modest weight loss seen in patients taking Contrave, some said that the rejection of the pill could prohibit development of such drugs at a time when two out of three Americans are overweight or obese.
"My concern is ... we will potentially kill development of these medications, and it is the most serious disease that the United States is facing," panel chairman Abraham Thomas, head of endocrinology at Henry Ford Hospital says.
The fate of Contrave is essential to California-based manufacturer Orexigen, which focuses solely on obesity drugs and has no products on the market so far. Contrave sales could reach $1.2 billion by 2018, making it the top player in a U.S. weight-loss drug market that sees just $382 million in sales annually.
Drug makers seeking a pill to help people slim down have been thwarted for decades by serious side effects. Many weight loss medications prescribed in the forties and fifties concentrated solely on stimulants, which had a very bad effect on the heart.
Xenical from Roche Holding AG, approved in 1999, remains an approved prescription weight-loss drug. In addition, GlaxoSmithKline markets a lower-dose, over-the-counter version called Alli. Both can cause serious liver problems, uncontrolled bowel movements and gas.
Abbott Laboratories'' Meridia, on the market since 1997, was removed in October over concerns about heart risks.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Diet pill, FDA, side effects
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