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Takeda to Launch Ads Touting Safety of Actos (Japan)

This article was originally published in PharmAsia News

Executive Summary

Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. has launched print ads touting the safety of its diabetes drug Actos (pioglitazone hydrochloride), a campaign that began just days after the U.S. FDA put new safety warnings on rival drug Avandia (rosiglitazone maleate), from GlaxoSmithKline PLC. The full page ads, running in approximately 60 newspapers and several magazines in the U.S., tell patients: "If you have type 2 diabetes, Actos has been shown to lower blood sugar without increasing your risk of having a heart attack or stroke." Takeda received a marketing age after the FDA's decision compelling Glaxo to add a new warning to Avandia's prescribing label about potential heart-attack risks for patients taking the drug. The FDA will also ask makers of other diabetes drugs, including Takeda, to note in their labels that their drugs haven't been proven to reduce cardiovascular risk. Shay Weisbrich, general manager of diabetes marketing at Takeda, said the company is concerned that the Avandia controversy has scared some patients off oral diabetes drugs altogether. "The more media there is out there, the more confusing it is for patients. We designed [the ads] to cut through that and provide some clarity," she said. Some doctors have been switching their patients to Actos from Avandia in recent months, as concerns about Avandia's safety have increased. (Click here for more - May Require Paid Subscription

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