The weight-loss drug, Contrave, has been endorsed by no less than the FDA. An FDA advisory committee has voted 13-7 for the endorsement of the drug because it contains naltrexone and bupropion that outweighs the drug’s blood pressure risk.
According to the report, contrave combines an antidepressant and an anti-addiction drug, both of which have been used individually for 20 years — naltrexone for opioid addiction and alcohol dependence and bupropion for depression and smoking cessation.
The bupropion-naltrexone combo is the last in a trio of new weight-loss drugs that went before FDA panels this year, striving to be the latest treatment in the dwindling field of medications to fight obesity. The previous two drugs, phentermine/topiramate (Qnexa) and lorcaserin hydrochloride (Lorqess) were both rejected by the FDA after they fared poorly at advisory committee meetings.
But Tuesday’s advisory committee ended very differently than the previous two.
Bupropion/naltrexone appeared to offer fewer side effects than the previous two drugs, although it also doesn’t appear to work as well at helping obese patients lose weight.
The FDA will make an approval decision by Jan. 31.