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Costly EXPEDITIONs to darkest amyloid bring Lilly a tantalizing trinket

This article was originally published in Scrip

Executive Summary

Two costly 80-week Phase III pivotal trials have failed to show that Eli Lilly's anti-amyloid antibody solanezumab improved cognition and function in patients with mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s disease. However, solanezumab will not yet be joining Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson's beta amyloid antibody bapineuzumab in the trash can of drug development (scripintelligence.com, 7 August 2012) because combined data from the two trials - EXPEDITION and EXPEDITION2 – did demonstrate that the drug candidate slows cognitive decline in patients with milder disease. Rather than the widely anticipated complete failure of solanezumab, therefore, Lilly’s drug may still have a path to market, pending discussions with regulators and further clinical trials.

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