Contrave Recommended For Approved by FDA panel
Contrave, a weight loss drug , has been approved by a Federal Drug Administration panel which reccomends it get the full nod followign additional studies.
Experts voiced safety concerns about the drug but additional studies conducted show benefits outweigh risks. This is an about-face for the FDA which previously rejected Arena Pharmaceuticals Inc.'s lorcaserin and Vivus Inc.'s Qnexa because of safety concerns for those weight loss drugs.
Contrave is made by Orexigen Therapeutics Inc. It works as a combination pill mising togther an anti-depressant and an anti-addiction drug. Experts say side effects could be headches, dizziness, and insomnia. Not enough clinical trials had ben conducted on long-term risk like stroke or heart disease.
Critics say diet pills are not a good solution for weight loss.
"The diet pill Contrave is the latest in a long line of dangerous and, ultimately, failed weight loss drugs," Dr. Sidney Wolfe, director of Public Citizen's health research group, said in a statement, citing drugs that have been pulled from the market, including fen-phen.
Orexigen's stock had been halted throughout the day ahead of the panel meeting and vote. It later rocketed 155 percent to $4.87 in after-market trading.