Revisiting cost-benefit for CentoRx

Virtually all drugs have side effects, and ultimately clinicians have to weigh the benefit of using a product versus its side-effect profile. The issue was highlighted last week by an editorial accompanying the publication in the New England Journal of Medicine of the data from Centocor Inc.'s Phase III study of its CentoRx antibody fragment to prevent complications in high-risk angioplasty patients.

Laurence Harker, professor of medicine and division director of hematology/oncology at the Department of Medicine at Emory University, said that while use of CNTO's IIb/IIIa platelet inhibitor is an appealing strategy, the EPIC study also shows the importance of assessing concurrent risks of hemorrhage in antithrombotic therapies.