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First Hypertension Drug to Inhibit Kidney Enzyme Approved

Published: Tuesday, March 6, 2007 | 9:40 PM ET

(HealthDay News) - Tekturna, a new molecular entity that acts at the earlier stages of the blood pressure regulation process to inhibit hypertension, has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Tekturna (aliskiren) inhibits renin, a kidney enzyme associated with blood pressure regulation, the agency said in a statement. The drug's effectiveness was demonstrated in six clinical studies involving more than 2,000 people with mild-to-moderate hypertension. Its effects were maintained for up to one year.

As is true for similar drugs, blood pressure reductions among blacks who used Tekturna tended to be lower than for whites and Asians. The drug should not be used by pregnant women, the FDA said.

Common side effects reported during clinical testing included diarrhea, and in rare instances, allergic reactions and difficulty breathing, the agency said.

Tekturna is manufactured by New Jersey-based Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp.

Copyright 2007 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.

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