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Merck May Be Positioned For First Approval Of A Protease Inhibitor In HCV

This article was originally published in Pharmaceutical Approvals Monthly

Executive Summary

In the years-long race to bring an oral protease inhibitor to market for hepatitis C, Vertex Pharmaceuticals has been perceived as running ahead of competitor Merck & Co. on two fronts – superior efficacy findings in clinical trials and proximity to the finish line. Vertex still appears to enjoy an edge based on Phase III data detailed last fall at the American Association for the Study of Liver Disease meeting, but Merck may be in line to get its candidate, boceprevir, approved a few weeks ahead of Vertex’s telaprevir.
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