Crestor is one of the world's most successful drugs with annual sales of $2bn, and those sales are likely to double very quickly now that it can also be used for atherosclerosis. Other statin drug manufacturers are expected to follow AstraZeneca's lead.
But researchers have discovered that the drug isn't even good at what it was originally intended to do. The drug doesn't help prevent heart patients from suffering a heart attack or stroke, and it certainly doesn't reduce their chances of dying from a heart problem.
But the news came too late America's drug regulator, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which, on the same day, widened the drug's remit.
(Sources: Reuter's; The Times, November 5, 2007).