In study, Alexza's schizophrenia treatment significantly improves symptoms

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. — An investigational schizophrenia drug appears effective in reducing agitation in patients with the disease, according to results of a late-stage clinical trial published in the British Journal of Psychiatry.

Alexza Pharmaceuticals announced results of a phase-3 trial of the inhaled drug AZ-004 (loxapine), which showed statistically significant improvement in symptoms of agitation in patients compared with the placebo.

“Individuals with schizophrenia are highly vulnerable to episodes of agitation,” said Michael Lesem, lead study author and medical director of the Houston-based Claghorn-Lesem Research Clinic. “Current treatment options are not optimal for managing these episodes. There is a clear need for novel anti-agitation treatments that are quick to act, safe and well-tolerated, easy to administer and accepted by patients and staff.”