Six suicides fail to kill FDA panel’s enthusiasm for new psoriasis med

It’s a frightening drug that already has six suicides on its resume.

And if Big Pharma has its way, that’s all going to be swept right under the rug.

An FDA advisory panel of so-called experts has just given a unanimous thumbs-up to a new med for psoriasis called brodalumab. It could be coming to your local doctor’s office and pharmacy in just a few short months.

And when that happens, the mainstream will do everything in its power to make sure you never know the real story about brodalumab.

It’s a story of suspicious deaths and a medication so risky that even some of the top drug companies around wanted nothing to do with it.

‘Damaged goods’

Those in the know never thought brodalumab would get this far.

That is, just inches away from being handed out to countless patients.

Recently an FDA advisory panel voted 18-0 that the agency should go ahead and approve the drug, something that’s expected in the next few months.

And yes, all 18 panel members knew full well about the suicides.

Another FDA division, one that reviews psychiatric meds, said that the drug’s history of suicide during testing was higher than what would be expected in a large trial for a mind-altering drug.

That supposedly gave “some panelists pause” — but they sure didn’t pause for long.

And I guess that’s not too surprising. The panel included members like Dr. Lynn Drake from Harvard, who’s actually done training for Big Pharma on how to get drugs approved.

Dr. Drake said she hoped to see broadalumab “out and about” really soon.

Really? She does know that an FDA advisory panel is supposed to be giving unbiased, expert advice to guide the agency in making decisions, doesn’t she?

But it seems that even the companies that were making brodalumab aren’t as enthused about it as Dr. Drake is.

First, Amgen bailed on the drug after the suicides were reported. It tossed the “damaged goods,” as the med was called, in the lap of AstraZeneca, which quickly and quietly made a deal with another pharma company to buy it on the cheap.

Valeant, the current owner, is proposing fact sheets for patients and even a wallet card telling where you can go to get help if you feel that you may harm yourself.

Are you kidding me?

Another idea on the table is a registry where the drug maker would keep tabs on those who injured or killed themselves while on the med.

And the FDA itself may mandate black box suicide warnings — or not.

What I do know is that very soon commercials for this drug will be running nonstop. And they’ll promise you clear skin, blue skies and puppies running in fields of flowers.

But I think we know enough about this drug already to just say no.

Something the FDA’s advisory panel should have done for us.

Sources:
“FDA panel backs approval of psoriasis drug brodalumab” Alicia Ault, July 20, 2016, Medscape, medscape.com