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New Drug Testing To Evaluate Quit Smoking Effectiveness Is Underway

Date: 28th March 2014

Arena Pharmaceuticals has reportedly started testing its weight loss medication Belviq to find out whether it is really effective in helping smokers quit smoking. The Phase 2 clinical testing on Belviq is underway.

Arena Pharmaceuticals, the pharmaceutical company based in San Diego, has revealed that it is carrying out the clinical experiment in association with Japanese drugmaker Eisai, its marketing partner. Craig Audet, senior senior vice president, operations, states that if Belviq is proved to be effective, it can open up a huge new market.

Arena has disclosed that a placebo-controlled, double-blind and randomized 12 week experiment will be conducted and 600 active smokers will be taken up for it. The smokers will be segregated into three categories. The first group of smokers will be provided with 10 milligrams Belviq (generic name lorcaserin), one per day. The second group will be given the same dose two times per day. The third group will be provided with a placebo. However, all three groups will be given counselling to motivate them for quit smoking.

As per disclosed by Craig Audet, studies conducted on rats have shown that Belviq decreases self-administration of nicotine in the animals. These studies were carried out at the Duke University and University of Toronto. Craig Audet reveals that administration of lorcaserin or Belviq to the rats is found to decrease the number of times nicotine is self-administered by the animals.


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