A Novartis logo is pictured on its headquarters building in Mumbai April 1, 2013.
A Novartis logo is pictured on its headquarters building in Mumbai April 1, 2013. (VIVEK PRAKASH)

ZURICH -- Novartis said on Friday the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) had approved its drug Ilaris to treat a serious form of childhood arthritis.

Ilaris inhibits interleukin-1 beta, excessive production of which plays a prominent role in certain inflammatory diseases, the company said.

The drug is the only approved treatment specifically for the condition that can be given as a monthly subcutaneous injection, Novartis said.

Ilaris is also approved in the European Union for the treatment of refractory gouty arthritis, Novartis said.




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