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Pfizer’s Lyrica (pregabalin) fails in two neuropathy studies

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(Reuters) – Pfizer Inc’s big-selling Lyrica (pregabalin) failed to help HIV patients and diabetics relieve neuropathy in two separate clinical trials, the drugmaker said on Friday.

Pfizer said it stopped a late-stage study involving patients with HIV neuropathy, which is characterized by burning pain. An interim look at the data by independent advisers overseeing the study prompted Pfizer to halt the study.

Lyrica did no better than a placebo in relieving the pain, according to the interim analysis. No safety concerns were raised by the advisers, Pfizer said.

A second late-stage study tested Lyrica for diabetics with peripheral neuropathy. About 20% of diabetics suffer pain resulting from nerve damage, Pfizer said. Lyrica did not meet the main effectiveness goal of the second study, either.