NOF urges care on Acomplia hopes

The president of the National Obesity Forum this week warned that drugs giant Sanofi-Aventis faces a PR challenge to manage growing expectations for its pre-launch drug Acomplia – described by the press last week as a ‘wonder drug’ that will ‘treat obesity, help smokers quit and tackle cholesterol levels’.

While himself positive as to the drug’s benefits, Dr Ian Campbell told PRWeek that some media reports on the drug’s efficacy had ‘rather overegged the pudding’ and Sanofi-Aventis needed to encourage the media to ‘restore some balance’.

Sanofi-Aventis is working alongside PR agency Manning Selvage & Lee, whose UK healthcare director is Sally Bradford, to promote the drug.

Neither MS&L nor Sanofi-Aventis would comment on planned PR activity for the brand as PRWeek went to press.

The drug – which is also known as rimonabant – could be available in the

UK within 18 months and is currently in phase III clinical trials.

The latest press reports touting the drug’s potential appeared last week following the release of fresh data on the product’s efficacy

at a medical congress in the US.

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