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Bristol Myers' bowel disease drug fails in late-stage study

FILE PHOTO: Test tubes are seen in front of a displayed Bristol Myers Squibb logo in this illustration

(Reuters) -Bristol Myers Squibb said on Thursday its experimental drug to treat Crohn's disease, a chronic inflammatory bowel condition, did not help patients achieve disease remission in a late-stage study.

Crohn's is a chronic bowel disease that causes inflammation in the digestive tract, and can lead to diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue and weight loss. It affects about 12.6 million people worldwide, according to the company.

The drug, ozanimod, was added to the U.S. drugmaker's portfolio through its $74 billion buyout of Celgene in 2019.

Ozanimod did not help patients achieve a state where they were no longer experiencing any gastrointestinal symptoms after 12 weeks, compared to a placebo, the company said.

Branded as Zeposia, ozanimod is approved in the U.S. to treat another chronic inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis, and certain relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis in adults. It generated global sales of $434 million in 2023.

Bristol Myers said it will evaluate the trial data and work with investigators to share the results with the scientific community.

Last year, the U.S. health regulator approved AbbVie's Rinvoq for certain adult patients with moderately to severely active Crohn's disease.

(Reporting by Mariam Sunny in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)