(Reuters) – Alkermes Plc’s treatment for schizophrenia met the main goals in a late-stage study, with patients not gaining as much weight as those treated with commonly used antipsychotic drug olanzapine, the company said on Thursday.
The high incidence of weight gain due to treatment from olanzapine limits the drug’s clinical use, Alkermes said in a statement.
Weight gain is a common side effect of atypical antipsychotic medications such as olanzapine, sold by Eli Lilly as Zyprexa.
Schizophrenia is a chronic, severe and disabling brain disorder, marked by hallucinations and depression. About 2.4 million American adults suffer from the disorder.
The company said it plans to submit the marketing application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in mid-2019.
The company’s shares, which closed up 4.6 percent on Wednesday, were halted.
Reporting by Saumya Sibi Joseph in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva