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U.S. FDA puts Merck’s HIV drug trials on hold

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(Reuters) – Merck & Co said on Monday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has placed clinical holds on trials testing the company’s HIV drug islatravir. The health regulator’s move is based on observations of a drop in T-cell counts in some participants receiving the drug in clinical studies, the company said. T-cells are a critical component of the immune system that help the body fight infections. The FDA has placed six studies related to islatravir on full clinical hold and seven on partial clinical hold. Merck said it will stop dosing participants who are currently receiving the drug as …

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