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Update on Drugs & Drug News




Approval Dates and Comments

Antibacterial Agent

Wyeth Pharmaceuticals

The US FDA approved this novel IV antibiotic in June 2005 for the treatment of complicated skin and skin structure infections in adults. It has a broad spectrum of antimicrobial activity, including activity against the drug-resistant bacterium methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.

Antifungal Agent

Terbinafine HCl
Lamisil® Tablets
Ranbaxy Laboratories

The US FDA gave tentative approval to manufacture and market this antifungal agent in June 2005 for the treatment of onychomycosis of the toenail or fingernail due to dermatophytes (tinea unguium). Product launch is expected after the US FDA gives their final approval.

Antibacterial Agent

Moxifloxacin HCl

The US FDA approved this once-daily antibiotic in June 2005 for the treatment of complicated skin and skin structure infections in adults that are caused by methicillin-susceptible Staphylococcus aureus, Escherichia coli, Klebsiella pneumoniae, or Enterobacter cloacae.

Monoclonal Antibody

Abbott Laboratories

The EMEA issued a positive opinion in June 2005, recommending approval of this monoclonal antibody for the treatment of psoriatic arthritis.

Drug News

Research Results

In an article published in the June issue of the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology* scientists reported that dithranol, which is used for the treatment of severe psoriasis, induces keratinocyte apoptosis through a novel mitochondrial pathway dependent on oxidative respiration and involving electron transfer with the ubiquinone pool. They suggested that this could be a potentially important mechanism involved in the clearance of psoriasis.*
*FASEB J 19(8):1012-4 (2005 Jun).

Insect Repellant

According to a recent report in The Medical Letter*, Picaridin (KBR 3023) became available in June 2005 in the US as a 7% solution (Cutter Advanced®, Spectrum Brands). Picaridin has been used as an insect repellant for years in Europe and Australia, where no serious toxicity has been reported. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending it as an alternative to DEET. Repellants containing picaridin are not registered for use in Canada.
*The Medical Letter 47(1210):46-7 (2005 Jun 6).

Drug Warning

Skin Cap® (Cheminova Laboratories International SA) is a product made in Madrid, Spain that was sold in the US in the mid-1990s. Its active ingredients were reported to be pyrithione zinc and sodium lauryl sulfate. However, analysis of two lots of this product demonstrated that it also contained clobetasol propionate. In 1997, the US FDA stopped its importation into the US. In 2004, a sample purchased over the internet was again analyzed showing adulteration with highpotency glucocorticosteroids.*
*Arch Dermatol 141(6):801-3 (2005 Jun).

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