UCB won approval in the USA for an intravenous formulation of its epilepsy drug Keppra, making it the only recently introduced anticonvulsant medication to be available in both oral and injectable forms in the USA.
Keppra (levetiracetam) is already approved in tablet and oral solution formulations, but the intravenous version will extend use of the product into emergency seizure situations, where oral treatment is not an option, and help drive sales momentum for the product which has latterly become one of UCB’s biggest sellers.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared Keppra for use as adjunctive therapy in the treatment of partial-onset seizures in adults with epilepsy. The US approval follows European approval of the IV formulation of the product earlier this year.
UCB reported Keppra sales of 365 million euros in the first half of 2006, a rise of 42% that puts it in sight of surpassing antihistamine Zyrtec (cetirizine) as the firm’s top product.