Amarin shares jump as FDA panel backs heart drug

Shares in Amarin jumped on news that it had won the backing of an FDA advisory panel to sell its heart drug Vascepa to a wider group of patients. The shares, which had jumped over 20 per cent earlier in the week as the panel prepared to meet, added another 8 per cent when the Nasdaq market re-opened on Friday. It was trading around the $22.87 mark at lunch in New York, up 6.4 per cent on the day. The specially convened FDA advisory committee voted unanimously to approve the expanded use of Amarin’s Vascepa drug as an add-on therapy for reducing the chance of heart attacks and strokes in high-risk patients with cardiovascular disease. However, there were differences within the group as to just how widely it should be prescribed. Vascepa is a highly purified fish oil capsule targeted at people who are at risk of stroke or heart attack because they continue to have high levels of harmful blood fats, called triglycerides, despite being prescribed treatment with statins.

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