Esperion Therapeutics Inc Shares Plunge on Cholesterol Drug Safety Concerns

Esperion Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ:ESPR) stock was falling hard Wednesday on results from its Phase 3 trial for bempedoic acid.

Esperion Therapeutics Inc Shares Plunge on Cholesterol Drug Safety Concerns

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Bempedoic acid is a drug from the company that is designed to treat patients with elevated low density lipoprotein cholesterol. The company is specifically targeting patients that haven’t been receptive to other treatments, such as statin therapy.

The study was to test the safety of bempedoic acid in treating these patients. It had the company giving each patient 180 mg of bempedoic acid daily for a period of 52 weeks. There was a total of 2,230 patients patients that took part in the study. Two third of patients were given the drug while the other third was the placebo group.

The Phase 3 trial of bempedoic acid met both its primary and secondary endpoints. This includes its primary endpoint of safety and tolerability, as well as its secondary endpoint of lowering low density lipoprotein cholesterol 20% after 12 weeks. However, there are still concerns about the safety of the drug.

Some of the concerns include discontinuation of the treatment for roughly 11% of patients on the drug, as compared to 7% for those taking the placebo. The group taking the drug during the study saw about 79% suffer from adverse events. The same percentage of adverse events was also seen by those taking the placebo during the study.

Fatal adverse events that took place during the study were 1% of patients taking bempedoic acid and only 0.3% for those on the placebo. The company says that these adverse events aren’t connected to the treatments during the trial.

ESPR stock was down 30% as of noon Wednesday.

As of this writing, William White did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.

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