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New Veterinary Drugs Debut at NAVC

Posted: Jan. 23, 2014, 6:00 p.m. EST

Three major U.S. veterinary pharmaceutical makers—Merial Ltd., Bayer Animal Health and Zoetis Inc.—used the North American Veterinary Community conference this week to unveil new drugs formulated for dogs and cats.

Merial, based in Duluth, Ga., released NexGard (afoxolaner) Chewables, an FDA-approved flea and tick killer for dogs. The company reported that NexGard is the first and "only soft, beef-flavored chew” designed to provide "long-lasting, next-generation flea and tick control.”

The prescription-only drug comes in a vegetable-based, meatless nugget that is approved to prevent flea infestations and kill both fleas and the American dog tick.

NexGard contains a new molecule, afoxolaner, that disrupts the nervous systems of fleas and ticks, causing hyperexcitation and death, the company stated.

 New Drugs
From left, Merial's NexGard, Bayer's Remend and Zoetis' Apoquel.
The drug may be given once a month to dogs at least 8 weeks old and more than 4 pounds.

Bayer, based in Shawnee Kan., introduced Remend, a topical line formulated to manage wounds, abrasions and lacerations in cats and dogs and lubricate dry eyes.

Wound Spray Gel and Corneal Repair Gel contain hyaluronic acid (HA), which Bayer’s director of veterinary technical services, Cristiano von Simson, DVM, MBA, said fosters "an environment conducive to re-epithelialization at the site of the wound.”

The company’s Eye Lubricating Drops is a preservative-free gel containing 0.4 percent Hyasent-S (cross-linked HA).

All three products are designed for use in-clinic and at home.

Zoetis, based in Florham Park, N.J., launched Apoquel (oclacitinib tablet), a twice-daily drug formulated to stop canine itching. After 14 days, Apoquel may be given once a day for maintenance purposes.

The FDA-approved treatment is the first and only Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor approved for veterinary use, Zoetis reported.

A trial involving dogs suffering from allergic dermatitis found that Apoquel worked within 24 hours, the company stated.

"In a trial of dogs with atopic dermatitis, dogs treated with Apoquel experienced a significant and long-term reduction in itch and inflammation at Day 28 of the study,” Zoetis added. "In cases where Apoquel treatment was continued, success rates remained constant through Day 112.”

Another drug maker, Greenfield, Ind.-based Elanco Companion Animal Health, announced that the company took over the manufacture and sale of Surolan otic suspension, which had been marketed by Vetoquinol.

Surolan, indicated for the treatment of canine otitis externa, contains three active ingredients: miconazole nitrate, polymyxin B sulfate and prednisolone acetate.

The NAVC conference, which ended Wednesday, drew more than 16,000 attendees to Orlando, Fla.


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