J&J’s drug for Crohn’s disease proves more effective than standard treatment

10/7/2008

TRENTON, N.J. A study has found that Remicade (infliximab), Johnson & Johnson’s injected Crohn’s disease drug, works better than a commonly used pill.

The six-month study, run by J&J biotech subsidiary Centocor, gave 508 adult patients Remicade plus a placebo pill, Remicade plus azathioprine or azathioprine plus a placebo injection. Fifty-seven percent of patients receiving the injection and the pill had no symptoms and were able to discontinue the use of steroids. In the group getting Remicade plus the placebo, 44 percent of patients improved, while 31 percent of those receiving the pill and placebo injection improved.

Forty-four percent of patients receiving both treatments also experienced healing of their bowels. Crohn’s disease is an autoimmune disorder that causes the body to attack the intestinal lining.

Azathioprine is the generic name for Prometheus Labs’ Imuran. It is also available in generic form.

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