Amgen drug tied to death risks in tests as transfusion substitute

A new study of Amgen's Aranesp said it was linked to an almost 45% increase in death in trials testing it for reducing the need for blood transfusions in anemic cancer patients. Aranesp already is approved for treating the anemia itself, a side effect of chemotherapy, and an FDA advisory panel plans to meet in May to consider the entire class of erythropoiesis-stimulating agents.

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