CV Therapeutics


said Wednesday that a late-stage test of its heart drug Ranolazine met its goal of increasing exercise time for people who suffer from angina, or heart pain.

A full briefing on the study's results is taking place today at a scientific meeting of the American Heart Association.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based biotech company is developing Ranolazine as apotential treatment for chronic angina -- attacks of cardiac pain thatafflict more than 6 million people in the U.S.

The late-stage test of 823 patients showed that patients takingRanolazine in combination with one of three current anti-angina medicinesshowed a 25% decrease in angina episodes, compared with patients takingcurrent medicines alone, according to Bernard Chaitman, professor ofmedicine at St. Louis University School of Medicine and principalinvestigator of the trial. The patients taking Ranolazine were able to exercise for 24 seconds longer than those taking a placebo.

"This is good news because they met the primary endpoint of the study,"says Robertson Stephens analyst Mike King, who rates CV Therapeutics a buy.His firm has done underwriting for the company.

This is the second of two positive late-stage tests of Ranolazineconducted by CV Therapeutics.

"With data from two successfully completed pivotal Phase III trials, wewill now focus our efforts on preparing our new drug application which weplan to file with the FDA in 2002," said CV Therapeutics' Chairman and CEOLouis Lange, in a statement.

After trading was halted for the trial results, shares of CV Therapeutics were up $9.51, or 25%, to $47.90 in recent trading.