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Drug to treat epileptic children on the anvil

Treatment of epilepsy among children seems set to get a boost soon in the form of a drug, Keppra, specifically tailored for children as young as six months.

india Updated: Nov 17, 2008 21:28 IST
Suprotip Ghosh

Treatment of epilepsy among children seems set to get a boost soon in the form of a drug, Keppra, specifically tailored for children as young as six months.

Belgian drug-maker UCB Pharmaceuticals has applied to the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) for approval of Keppra. It has been approved for use among children by the US Food and Drugs Administration, the company said. “We have applied for approval in children up to six months of age and expect to get the nod in two months,” said UCB’s India head, Charles-Antoine Janssen.

Keppra was the first drug to be approved for use in children as young as six months in the US, said Roch Doliveux, chief executive, UCB Pharma. This means that the drug would be available in finished dosages, suitable for various age-groups.

Doctors said that the drug is a welcome addition, as the current therapy regimen in the country consists almost only on small dosages of existing drugs meant for adults.

“We generally use drugs meant for adults in appropriate dosages to treat infants,” said Deepu Chatterjee, a neurosurgeon. “But a drug available in a finished dosage form and approved in the US is a welcome addition.”

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