Lundbeck Falls After Alzheimer’s Drug Fails in Late-Stage Study

H. Lundbeck A/S dropped the most in almost four years after its experimental Alzheimer’s drug failed to meet targets in a final-stage patient trial.

The shares dropped as much as 17 percent, the steepest intraday decline since the Danish drugmaker slashed two years of sales and profit forecasts in December 2012. Lundbeck was down 15 percent to 231.10 kroner at 10:06 a.m. in Copenhagen.

The trial failed to replicate earlier encouraging results for the experimental compound, idalopirdine, Lundbeck said in a statement late Thursday. Two additional late-stage studies are still going on, with results expected early next year.

Lundbeck’s compound is designed to promote a chemical the brain uses to process thought by blocking a cell receptor called 5-HT6. Axovant Sciences Ltd. has a similar therapy in final-stage tests. Pfizer Inc. stopped work on its own drug aimed at 5-HT6 earlier this year after it didn’t show effectiveness in an interim analysis.

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