Gov’t panel backs drug for delusions in Parkinson’s patients


WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal health experts have endorsed an experimental drug intended to treat psychotic delusions and behaviors that often afflict patients with Parkinson’s disease, the debilitating movement disorder.

The panel of Food and Drug Administration advisers voted 12-2 that the benefits of the drug from Acadia Pharmaceuticals outweighed its risks. That vote, considered a recommendation for approval, is non-binding though the FDA often follows the advice of its panelists.

Acadia Pharmaceuticals Inc. has asked the FDA to approve pimavanserin to treat hallucinations, delusions and irrational behavior associated with Parkinson’s Disease, a neurodegenerative disease that causes tremors and other movement problems.

Approximately half of all Parkinson’s patients suffer from the problems, known medically as psychosis in Parkinson’s disease. There are no FDA-approved drugs currently available for the condition.