BI tests new Pradaxa uses, antidote may be in the works

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Boehringer Ingelheim is testing its blood thinner Pradaxa in two new scenarios: to prevent stroke among patients who have had an embolic stroke of undetermined source and among patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation who have had percutaneous coronary intervention with stenting.

Pradaxa is currently indicated for atrial fibrillation that is not associated with a valve problem.

The company said in a statement that the new tests will be part of its larger Re-Volution clinical trial.

The news comes one day after news that a bleeding antidote may be on its way. Reuters reported Monday that an early-stage trial showed an experimental treatment appears to be able to help blood clot through a protein that is “meant to mop up Pradaxa circulating in the blood stream.” The data was presented at the American Heart Association in Dallas.

Reuters notes that the finding is significant because none of the recent warfarin replacements, such as Pradaxa, J&J's Xarelto or BMS's Eliquis have a pro-clotting counterpart, which has made some doctors uneasy about the new drugs.

“It's always easier to prescribe a therapy if you feel you have a bailout strategy,” cardiologist Jonathan Piccini told Reuters.

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