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Out of the Ordinary

Cholesterol shot has success in early phase trial

Brittney Elkins

A cholesterol shot may be the answer for patients who don't tolerate statins or whose diet changes have failed to lower cholesterol levels.

The new drug reduced bad cholesterol in patients, but has a long way to go before passing by the FDA

A cholesterol shot produced by the biotech firm Amgen looks promising after early clinical trials reduced patients’ cholesterol by up to 66 percent.

The monthly injection that has been dubbed the cholesterol shot was given to 51 patients either once every two or every four weeks. The early phase 1 clinical trial was designed to see if the cholesterol shot was safe.

Patients who received the cholesterol shot every two weeks saw their bad cholesterol decrease an average of 63 percent in the eighth week, while patients taking the cholesterol shot every four weeks saw a decrease of 66 percent.

Phase two of the study will begin later this year. If it eventually passes by the Food and Drug Administration, the cholesterol shot may be ideal for patients who cannot tolerate statin therapy or who have had difficulty lowering their cholesterol with diet changes.

The cholesterol shot did not result in any deaths or side effects in the phase 1 study. High LDL, or ‘bad’ cholesterol, leads to strokes and heart attacks, which is the leading cause of death in the United States.

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