Isis Gains Most in Five Years on Diabetes Drug Results

Isis Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ISIS) climbed the most in more than five years on data showing the company’s experimental drug helped bring down diabetes patients’ triglyceride levels, an important measure of heart health.

Isis, based in Carlsbad, California, rose 20 percent to $26.43 at 12:42 p.m., after increasing as much as 24 percent in the largest intraday advance since Jan. 8, 2008.

Type 2 diabetes patients with high triglyceride levels saw a 72 percent reduction of the blood fat and a 40 percent increase in high-density lipoprotein, or HDL, the good type of cholesterol, according to a study. The data, from the second of three phases of clinical trials generally needed for regulatory approval, were presented yesterday at the American Diabetes Association meeting in Chicago, Isis said in a statement.

“Patients with high levels of triglycerides are at a significant risk for cardiovascular disease and stroke,” Joseph Witztum, professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego, said in the statement.

The study examined 11 patients over 13 weeks who either took the drug ISIS-APOCIII in a 300 milligram injection or a placebo. Two-to-one of the 11 were given the treatment, the company said in the statement.

The drug also showed a trend toward improvements in blood sugar control.

Isis’s focus is to bring the medication to market for patients who can’t reduce their triglyceride levels to a safe level with currently available drugs, Richard Geary, the company’s senior vice president of clinical development, said in the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Anna Edney in Washington at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reg Gale at

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