Cytokinetics, Inc. Says 58 in ALS Trial Got Placebo in Error

Published: Jul 09, 2013

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Cytokinetics Inc. (CYTK) is evaluating the costs and timing of a clinical trial for its amyotrophic lateral sclerosis treatment after some patients were given a placebo by mistake. The shares fell as much as 8.8 percent. Fifty-eight patients slated to receive the drug, called tirasemtiv, were instead given the placebo due to a computer programming error, the South San Francisco, California-based company said in a statement today. The error has been fixed and the trial is continuing, Cytokinetics said. No participants assigned to the control group were given the treatment. Tirasemtiv treats amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease, a fatal breakdown of the central nervous system with no known cure. The trial, designed to enroll as many as 500 patients, was in the second of three stages usually required to win marketing approval in the U.S.

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