AstraZeneca PLC (AZN) Takes On Merck & Co., Inc. (MRK) In Alzheimer's Drug Race  
2/6/2014 7:45:03 AM

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AstraZeneca is moving an experimental Alzheimer's drug into late-stage development, taking on U.S. rival Merck & Co which announced plans to start similar final-stage research in December. Britain's second-biggest drugmaker revealed its plan to move AZD3293 into the last phase of testing needed for registration as it announced full-year results on Thursday. Both the AstraZeneca and Merck medicines work by blocking an enzyme called beta secretase that is involved in production of beta-amyloid, a protein that creates brain plaques considered a major cause of Alzheimer's disease.

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