Merck Consolidates All Rights To Vernakalant By Assuming North American Rights From Astellas
This article was originally published in The Pink Sheet Daily
Already holding worldwide rights to the oral formulation and rest-of-world rights to intravenous vernakalant, Merck will partner with Cardiome Pharma to obtain FDA approval of IV vernakalant.
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Cardiome may go it alone with atrial fibrillation drug vernakalant after Merck exited a 2009 partnership around the drug, but another possibility is that Cardiome will seek a buyer.
Higher regulatory hurdles for anti-arrhythmic drugs have pushed Merck to discontinue the development of Cardiome’s oral vernakalant.
The Phase IIIb trial was in patients who had had atrial fibrillation for at least six months; an earlier trial in heart failure also was terminated because of increased risk.