New Lantus(R) ClikSTAR(TM) eco-friendly insulin pen now available in Canada

    
    - Easy-to-use and reliable device helps patients achieve their treatment
    goals -
    

LAVAL, QC, Oct. 19 /CNW/ - Health Canada has approved the ClikSTAR reusable insulin pen for use with Lantus, giving patients with diabetes an additional option to safely and effectively achieve and sustain control of their blood sugar levels. The new insulin delivery device was launched today in conjunction with the 20th World Diabetes Congress being held in Montreal, Quebec, making Canada one of the first countries worldwide to launch this state-of-the-art pen.

"With the introduction of Lantus ClikSTAR, we offer a new device for patients with type 1 and type 2 diabetes," said Dr. Laurent-Didier Jacobs, Vice-President, Medical Affairs at sanofi-aventis Canada Inc., explaining that Lantus ClikSTAR ideally complements the previously launched Lantus(R) SoloSTAR and Apidra(TM) SoloSTAR(R) pre-filled insulin pens. "The Lantus SoloSTAR and Apidra SoloSTAR ready-to-use insulin pens were launched to respond to the different lifestyle needs of patients by providing them with an easier way to self-administer their insulin injections. For this reason, SoloSTAR will continue to be available for patients who find the process of loading or changing insulin cartridges burdensome and even difficult," he said.

The Lantus ClikSTAR pen, designed in partnership with nearly 2,000 patients and 500 nurses, is the result of over four years of intensive development and testing aimed at addressing patients' needs. The reusable pen has all the benefits of the pre-filled Lantus SoloSTAR and Apidra SoloSTAR delivery device, including a low injection force, a dial and dose setting that allows patients to administer doses from one to 80 units in a single injection, numbering that is both large and clear that lessens the possibility of injection error, and a dial back safety feature to correct dose selection errors.

Canada, along with four other countries, participated in a study comparing ClikSTAR with other pens. The results, being presented at the World Diabetes Congress, reveal that a higher proportion of patients found ClikSTAR easier to use than other comparator pens when assessed in specific categories such as replacing the cartridge, dialing a dose and hearing/feeling the clicking sound.

"It's an added bonus that the Lantus ClikSTAR was developed with patients' needs in mind," said Stacey Horodezny, a diabetes educator based at the Trillium Health Centre in Mississauga, Ontario.

"For patients, ease of use, flexibility and comfort are what matter most," she added. "For us, as nurse educators, these features are also important because they allow us to spend more time on all the other aspects of insulin and diabetes management."

In addition to Canada, the new pen is being launched in Switzerland, Greece and the Netherlands. ClikSTAR is currently being reviewed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Diabetes in Canada

Diabetes is a chronic condition in which the body does not produce or properly use insulin - the hormone needed to convert glucose (sugar) into energy. In Canada, more than two million people have diabetes. By the end of the decade, the number is expected to rise to three million. It is estimated that one-third of adults with diabetes are unaware of their condition. According to the Canadian Diabetes Association, diabetes and its complications cost the Canadian healthcare system an estimated $13.2 billion every year. By 2010, it is estimated that this number will rise to $15.6 billion a year, and by 2020 to $19.2 billion a year.

About Lantus and Apidra

Lantus is a novel recombinant human insulin analog approved for once-daily administration in the treatment of patients over the age of 17 with type 1 or type 2 diabetes who require basal (long-acting) insulin for the control of hyperglycemia (abnormally high blood sugar). Lantus is also indicated in the treatment of pediatric patients with type 1 diabetes.

Apidra is a rapid-acting recombinant human insulin analog that offers patients (both type 1 and type 2) mealtime dosing flexibility. The injection can be administered up to 15 minutes before or within 20 minutes after starting a meal.

Hypoglycemia (low blood glucose) is the most common adverse event associated with Lantus and Apidra. Other adverse events commonly associated with Lantus and Apidra include allergic reactions, injection site reaction and lipohypertrophy (small fat deposits at injection site).

About sanofi-aventis

Sanofi-aventis, a leading global pharmaceutical company, discovers, develops and distributes therapeutic solutions to improve the lives of everyone. Backed by a world-class R&D organization, the company is developing leading positions in several therapeutic areas: cardiology, thrombosis, oncology, metabolic disorders, the central nervous system, internal medicine and vaccines.

Sanofi-aventis is represented in Canada by the pharmaceutical company sanofi-aventis Canada Inc., based in Laval, Quebec, and by the vaccines company Sanofi Pasteur Limited, based in Toronto, Ontario. Together they employ more than 2,000 people across the country. With combined R&D investments of $211.5 million in 2008, they are leaders in Canada's pharmaceutical/biotech sector, a critical knowledge-based industry that generates jobs, business and opportunity throughout the country.

SOURCE SANOFI-AVENTIS CANADA

For further information: For further information: or to speak with an endocrinologist, please contact: Laine Jaremey, MS&L, (416) 847-1321, Laine.jaremey@mslworldwide.com; Claudette Baltayan, sanofi-aventis Canada, (514) 856-8748, Claudette.Baltayan@sanofi-aventis.com

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