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Bayer drug shown to slow diabetic kidney disease

FRANKFURT, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Bayer’s finerenone drug slowed the progression of diabetic kidney disease in a late stage clinical trial, underscoring the company’s hopes for the drug to generate at least 1 billion euros ($1.2 billion) in annual sales.

In a Phase III trial, finerenone reduced the risk of either kidney failure, a lasting drop in kidney filtration or death from renal failure by 18%, the German drugmaker said on Friday.

It also reduced the risk of a range of serious cardiovascular conditions by 14%.

The drugs and farming pesticides maker needs to upgrade its drug development pipeline amid a weaker outlook for agricultural sales and as it seeks to finalise an $11 billion settlement over claims its Roundup weedkiller causes cancer.

Finerenone is an improved version of a troublesome class of heart drugs called mineralocorticoid receptor antagonists (MRAs)that is associated with a range of side effects.

Bayer, which is testing finerenone against a range of other heart and kidney conditions, plans to request marketing approval in diabetic kidney disease by end of this year.

$1 = 0.8505 euros Reporting by Ludwig Burger; Editing by Mark Potter

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