Amgen First-of-its-Kind Osteoporosis Drug

A first-of-its-kind osteoporosis drug lowers the risk of bone fractures as well as or better than current medicines, studies in older women and men with prostate cancer suggest. Wall Street sees Amgen Inc.'s genetically engineered denosumab as a potential blockbuster crucial to the company's future. But given the crowded market of treatments for the bone-thinning disease, doctors see its expected high cost as a big drawback.

"It'll find a particular niche where it'll be used, but I don't see it as taking over the market," said Dr. Sundeep Khosla, a professor and osteoporosis researcher at the Mayo Clinic not involved in the studies ,The Associated Press reports.

Overall, those fractures appeared in 2.3 percent of the denosumab group, compared with 7.2 percent of patients taking placebo, according to Dr. Steven Cummings of California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco and colleagues , ABC News reports.

However, d enosumab patients in the osteoporosis safety group had a slightly increased incidence of breast, pancreatic, gastrointestinal and reproductive cancers. ,Forbes reports.

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