FDA notes heart events, tumors with Novo drug

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Federal health officials say a potential blockbuster diabetes drug from Novo Nordisk appears to work. But it says questions remain about its effect on the heart and other organs.

Results from the drugmaker show liraglutide (Leer-A'-gloo-tyde) helps control blood sugar when used alone or with other medications. But regulators have concerns about heart problems and thyroid tumors seen in some company studies.

Novo Nordisk is hoping its once-a-day injection can take sales away from Byetta, a twice-a-day injection from Eli Lilly and Amylin Pharmaceuticals that works similarly.

The FDA meets with its outside diabetes experts this week to review liraglutide and another drug looking to compete in the expanding $5.1 billion U.S. market for diabetes drugs.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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