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MarketScreener Homepage  >  Equities  >  Swiss Exchange  >  Novartis    NOVN   CH0012005267

NOVARTIS

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Novartis: MS Pill Gilenya Patient Develops Rare Brain Disease

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04/13/2012 | 05:33am EST

Novartis AG (NVS) Friday said a patient treated with its multiple-sclerosis pill Gilenya has been diagnosed with a rare and often fatal brain disease.

The Swiss drug maker said the patient had been previously treated with another MS drug, Tysabri, co-marketed by Biogen Idec Inc. (BIIB) and Elan Corp. PLC (ELN), which has been already associated with progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy.

"The current assessment is that Tysabri is the drug most likely associated with this case of PML," Novartis said in a statement. "However, a contribution of Gilenya to the evolution of this case cannot be excluded."

The development comes at a critical time for Novartis's Gilenya, a potential blockbuster product whose safety profile has recently come into question after the death of one person in the U.S. last autumn within 24 hours of starting treatment.

The European Medicines Agency, the body responsible for licensing Gilenya in Europe a year ago, is expected to issue a decision on the safety of the medicine following an in-depth review next week.

Novartis said it doesn't know of any confirmed PML cases in patients treated with Gilenya, also known as fingolimod, who hadn't previously been treated with Tysabri.

At 0900 GMT, Novartis shares were trading 0.4% lower at CHF49.79.

-By Marta Falconi, Dow Jones Newswires; +41 43 443 8043; marta.falconi@dowjones.com

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
BIOGEN 0.40% 334.21 Delayed Quote.10.62%
ELAN CORPORATION, PLC 0.00% 12.71 End-of-day quote.0.00%
NOVARTIS 0.00% 90.04 Delayed Quote.7.14%
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Financials ($)
Sales 2019 53 517 M
EBIT 2019 14 117 M
Net income 2019 8 856 M
Debt 2019 14 672 M
Yield 2019 3,32%
P/E ratio 2019 22,11
P/E ratio 2020 19,81
EV / Sales 2019 4,54x
EV / Sales 2020 4,26x
Capitalization 229 B
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Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 28
Average target price 94,4 $
Spread / Average Target 5,3%
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Managers
NameTitle
Vasant Narasimhan Chief Executive Officer
Hans Jörg Reinhardt Independent Non-Executive Chairman
Harry Werner Kirsch Chief Financial Officer
John Tsai Chief Medical Officer
Srikant T. Madhav Datar Independent Non-Executive Director
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