Raptiva finally pulled in US over PML link
Genentech has withdrawn its psoriasis drug Raptiva (efalizumab) from US shelves on continuing concerns about its link to the brain disease progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML).
Genentech, which will be bought by Swiss drug major Roche, said that: “Although we believe that many psoriasis patients are benefiting from Raptiva, the balance between benefit and risk in the psoriasis population for which Raptiva was approved has significantly changed.”
Earlier this year the US Food and Drug Aministarion (FDA) warned physicians to carefully monitor patients treated with the drug after it confirmed that two people taking the drug had died from PML.
Genentech said it would work with Merck Serono, its licensee outside the United States and Japan, to inform other regulatory authorities of Raptiva’s withdrawal from the US market.