Bayer announced Monday that its experimental pill, Riociguat, was effective against a chronic condition called pulmonary arterial hypertension, Reuters reported.
Pulmonary hypertension is a rare and life-threatening disorder that affects estimated 52 in 1 million people globally. The condition is mostly found in younger women, Bayer said in a statement.
According to PubMed Health, pulmonary hypertension is when there is "abnormally high blood pressure in the arteries of the lungs". Also, the heart has to pump harder in people suffering from this condition. Over time, the heart weakens that leads to a heart failure.
The results will be presented at this week's annual meeting of the American College of Chest Physicians (ACCP) in Atlanta, Reuters reported.
The clinical trial for the drug involved 443 participants. Researchers found that, over a 12-week period, participants who received the drug could walk farther than people who were on placebo. On an average, the riociguat group saw an improvement of 36 meters in walking distance along with better heart conditions, Reuters reported.
"The six-minute walk distance test is a well-validated clinical measure in patients with PAH (Pulmonary arterial hypertension), and therefore, the results of the PATENT-1 (Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension sGC-Stimulator) trial are encouraging," said Professor Hossein Ardeschir Ghofrani of University Hospital Giessen and Marburg, Germany and principal investigator of the latest study.
The drug had certain side-effects like nausea, dizziness, headache and vomiting.
The drug, Riociguat is an investigational agent and is not approved by the FDA, EMA or other health authorities, says MarketWatch.