The Latest: Startup could bring back Vioxx for hemophilia

Markets Associated Press

The Latest on the possible return of Vioxx (all times local):

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10:30 a.m.

Could the once-popular arthritis pill Vioxx (VEYE-ochs) get a second life? A startup pharmaceutical company hopes so.

In 2004, Merck & Co. voluntarily pulled the blockbuster drug amid evidence it doubled the chances of having a heart attack or stroke.

Now tiny Tremeau (treh-MOH') Pharmaceuticals is working to Vioxx back, to treat severe joint pain caused by the bleeding disorder hemophilia. That would be for far fewer patients than the millions who took Vioxx pills for arthritis and other chronic pain.

Tremeau announced Tuesday that U.S. regulators have designated it an orphan drug, which brings financial and other benefits. If it's approved in a few years, following patient testing, doctors could again legally prescribe it to anyone.

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6 a.m.

Could the once-popular arthritis pill Vioxx (VEYE-ochs) get a second life? A startup pharmaceutical company hopes so.

In 2004, Merck & Co. voluntarily pulled the blockbuster drug amid evidence it doubled the chances of having a heart attack or stroke.

Now tiny Tremeau (treh-MOH') Pharmaceuticals is working to bring back Vioxx to treat severe joint pain caused by the bleeding disorder hemophilia. That would be for far fewer patients than the millions who took Vioxx pills for arthritis and other chronic pain.

If it's approved in a few years, following patient testing, doctors could again legally prescribe it to anyone.

Tremeau was announcing Tuesday that U.S. regulators have designated it an orphan drug, which brings financial and other benefits.